9 MIN. READ
For companies in the healthcare industry that use a content marketing strategy, it’s essential to consider the Google algorithm update 2021. Google is at it again and optimizing ranking based on a new set of criteria.
What criteria might you ask? It’s all based on how the user interacts with your content and their overall experience. Healthcare companies should be well aware of optimizing content marketing for a better page experience for patients.
Learn more about preparing your organization for the Google algorithm update 2021 and ways to optimize your healthcare content for the best results.
Main components of the Google algorithm update 2021
When it comes to optimizing healthcare content for your website, the primary metric to consider for Google’s update is page experience.
Page experience will significantly impact rankings, which includes determining how easily a user can interact with your page. Google will take into account five key metrics:
- Core Web Vitals (loading, interactivity, and visual stability).
- Intrusive guidelines.
These metrics can affect everything from bounce rate to page security. In an industry that relies so much on trustworthiness and expertise, healthcare organizations must have strategies that address these components.
How healthcare industries can prepare themselves for the Google algorithm update
You should consider each and every user who visits your webpage and the experience that you’re giving them. Thus, you need to consider your content, the components of your content, and the content’s metrics to create a great experience.
Ensure that you have a blogging strategy in place that highlights quality. After all, that will always be a priority for optimizing content for the healthcare industry. You want to show your patients the services you offer so that they want to learn more. Selling aside, quality educational content that covers everything from technological advances to common disease symptoms also encourages patient engagement and trust.
As you strengthen your content to prepare for the Google algorithm update 2021, you’ll get a head start on the competition as well. While others are scrambling to make adjustments after the rollout, you will be ahead of the game, reaching more potential patients and focusing on providing quality care.
Consider the overall page experience and metrics
There are several different metrics to consider when creating content for each page of your website. To ensure you’re optimizing your page experience as much as possible, make sure you’re using these tools and strategies for your content marketing plan.
1. Core Web Vitals
Core Web Vitals are the series of metrics focusing on site speed. When loading your home page and various pillar pages, observe how quickly you can access the information.
If it takes quite some time to load a page, it’s time to consider an alternate strategy. Luckily, you can use Google tools to determine your progress when it comes to measuring these metrics. Some tools you can use are:
- Search Console report for Core Web Vitals.
- PageSpeed Insights.
- Google Lighthouse.
Think about your target audience. When patients search online, they are always looking for answers – possible treatment options, explanations for symptoms, information on insurance, facility contact information, and more. They want solutions, so if their first encounter with your home page is a delay, it will set the tone for their overall experience.
Another crucial factor about page experience is mobile-friendliness. With over 52% of global online traffic coming from mobile devices, you can rest assured that patients are viewing your website on their mobile. Especially in this age of medicine, ensuring mobility without sacrificing quality is critical in offering patients what they need.
You’ll want to optimize each page for a mobile experience and make sure the content is formatted correctly for different mobile devices. A select few individuals don’t use an iPhone, so make sure they can view everything just as well. In addition to the typical considerations like speed and responsiveness, optimize for:
- Skimmability/readability (think larger font sizes, white space, etc.).
- Ease of use (make journeys and common traffic areas easily visible and clickable).
- Brand consistency (don’t forget to include brand colors and style for a seamless experience).
3. Safe browsing
With so much corruption in the digital world, it makes sense that Google would consider any website intending to spam or mislead your users. Simply put, if your patients don’t feel safe accessing your website, they won’t use it. Thus, you need to make sure it’s a safe place for them to browse. Use outside hyperlinks, make sure portal pages are secure and address your communication protocol with HTTPS.
In the healthcare arena, protecting patient data is extremely important. You should never risk having sensitive physical/mental information on your patients getting out. Practices that lose patient info can suffer high fines or other legal consequences.
Does your website start with HTTPS://? If not, it doesn’t have a Secure Sockets Layers (SSL) certificate that scrambles sensitive information so hackers cannot intercept it.
With HIPAA privacy laws and other regulations, it is vital to keep information safe and secure. Otherwise, you may face hefty fines, legal issues, and, perhaps worst of all, patient distrust. To effectively optimize your page experience for the Google algorithm update 2021, remember sites without an SSL get flagged.
5. Intrusive guidelines
When including pop-ups on your website, it’s important to note that gathering patient information has legal consequences. Healthcare businesses should be particularly cautious about this component when it comes to the page experience for patients.
So, think twice about collecting a user’s information. Make sure you have compliance, meet all regulations, and that your patient’s information is safe and secure.
Publish quality content that educates your audience
In today’s society, in a post-COVID-19 era, it’s important to keep quality at the forefront of your content marketing process. When creating your plan for your facility, you need:
- A beneficial purpose.
- E-A-T, or expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness.
- Y-M-Y-L, or your money or your life.
When creating your healthcare content, are you sure it is helping your users? Each page should have a clear purpose.
Your patients must be able to easily navigate and learn more about the idea behind the page, whether it be about the services you provide or the scope of your medical background.
To prepare for the Google algorithm update 2021, the content on each page should highlight:
- Your expertise in the healthcare industry and your specific field of medicine.
- Your voice and content as authoritative, positioning your company as a thought leader in your industry.
- The trustworthiness of your content and honesty about what your company provides.
Your content should always influence readers in some way. In an industry like healthcare, where the patient’s health, happiness, and financial situation are all affected, your content should always strive to address one of those areas to provide the most value.
Y-M-Y-L stands for Your Money or Your Life, and when creating content, you should always address this issue. Ask yourself, “How is my content affecting my patient’s life?” If your answer to that question is that it’s impacting your patients’ lives directly, then your content is doing its job.
SEO strategies for the Google algorithm update 2021
You’re looking to get the most out of your marketing efforts for your healthcare facility. To do so, you need to optimize for SEO and update your strategy so you can rank higher on search engine result pages (SERPs).
For a solid strategy, you need to consider several different ways to optimize your content for your patients. A few key areas to focus on are:
- Medical-based keyword research.
- Meta titles, headings, and descriptions for keywords.
- Google My Business pages.
Medical-based keyword research
When implementing your SEO strategy to prepare for the Google algorithm update 2021, start with keyword research based on your medical niche. For example, let’s say you’re in regenerative medicine. Your research tells you that users search for phrases like “regenerative foot and ankle treatments.”
Use that phrase in the title of an article, subheaders, and the body of the content so Google will recognize that article as a possible solution to that patient’s query.
Meta titles, headings, and descriptions for keywords
You can effectively drive traffic to your website when optimizing meta titles and descriptions. The meta description appears on SERPs, so include a few sentences about the article (and your keyword) to entice users to click on your page. As mentioned above, using the keyword in your headers will also help you rank, showing search engines that the actual content pertains to the topic (and you didn’t just game the meta information for higher rankings).
Create and optimize your Google My Business page
One of the easiest ways to strategize your content marketing plan for SEO is to utilize Google My Business. It’s a free tool to promote your company and website on Google Search and Maps.
You can connect with your customers, post updates, and read reviews about patient experience in your facility. It’s essential to optimize your Google My Business page to appear at the top rankings for the medical-based keywords you’ve researched.
When it comes to your healthcare facility’s content marketing plan, it’s important to optimize for the Google algorithm update 2021 if you want to prepare and keep an edge on the competition. In an industry that requires expertise, trust and quick answers, fixing up your page experience will increase your patient engagement levels, lead to stronger relationships and more leads.
Solution for optimizing content for healthcare companies
If you’re looking for a solution for optimizing your content marketing strategy, Tempesta Media has a managed services solution for your healthcare facility.
With Tempesta Media, you can optimize your content for Google while also leveraging social and influencer marketing to drive better results at less cost. When you implement a plan that considers the Google algorithm update 2021 and optimizing page experience and SEO, you’ll get the most out of your website and content marketing efforts.
As you prepare for the update, there are other areas to consider to set your content marketing program up for success. Read our latest e-book on 100 mistakes companies make in implementing their programs to learn other ways to improve yours.