Happy Halloween! Hope you are finding a way to celebrate, or rest, or both, and please remember to set your clocks back if you’re reading this right away.
Why would I title this post, “Is SEO Dead?”
While searching the internet one day recently, I came across this question a few times: “Is SEO dead?” Now, as an SEO Specialist, I would certainly hope not! Perhaps, “SEO” is a person folks are concerned about? In which case, I also hope all is well for Seo. But, if this search is actually a referendum on Search Engine Optimization (aka: SEO in our little world), then I have some thoughts.
OH, THE IRONY.
Really? People are going to SEARCH for “Is SEO dead?” as a way to find out? Not a carrier pigeon, newspaper, or telegram? Nope. I didn’t think so. They’re searching for it. Good. Thank you for proving my point for me. I appreciate it.
Who is searching for this?
Is it concerned business owners who are worried about getting scammed out of money because they are being encouraged to invest in something that is actually outdated? Is it people in the SEO industry who are concerned about their job security? Perhaps, the searchers are folks who are currently paying for SEO services but not so sure their investment is worth it? Maybe, the searchers are considering what they need to do to get their website ready for SEO and have some doubts or concerns.
Things about SEO that should be dead
Having done this work for a while now, I know that there are some things about SEO that make sense. Logically, strategically, and ethically. There are also some things about this work that should probably end now.
Keyword stuffing…yes, that should be dead.
Keyword stuffing is a tactic in which a specific keyword is used way more than is appropriate in the content. This is especially harmful when the keyword is not relevant to the content. In fact, keyword stuffing could diminish the page or post’s overall quality due to its overuse. This is why Google frowns upon the practice.
Paying for backlinks…also dead.
This practice isn’t just one that should be dead ASAP, but also against Google’s Webmaster Policy Guidelines. You do not need to pay for backlinks to get your SEO where it needs to be. Laying intentional and ethical groundwork to increase your trust and credibility with search engines takes time, but it pays off in the long-run. Quality SEO strategy is a long-game. There are things you can do in the meantime to help boost your site traffic. Meanwhile, focusing on content creation, technical site auditing, on-page optimization, improving the user experience on your website and increasing conversion is worth it. If you want to learn more about ethical backlink strategies, consider our comprehensive backlinks course.
Rest in peace, unethical, and unsustainable SEO practices. We won’t miss you over here.
As always, with SEO we have to stay flexible.
Yes, there are some constants. Keyword research matters. Speaking to your ideal client matters. And, the reality is that things change with SEO all the time. For example, Google recently changed the algorithm again. This could sound scary, especially to someone who relies on search engines to power your marketing and client attraction strategy. But, for our clients, we currently expect this most recent set of updates to be in-line with the recommendations we have been making for years.
So, how do we stay flexible with SEO strategy for therapy websites?
Search engines, like Google and Bing, change the mysterious algorithm and no one is privy to the exact information. We know many of the factors the top search engines use to inform rankings. And, we know there are around 200 factors considered. It would not be a good SEO strategy for therapist websites to try to optimize for all of these 200 factors. We focus on about 7-10 factors that we have found work very well for therapists and helping professionals. Different SEO companies focus on different factors (backlinks, video, blog posts, on-page SEO, metadata, and a whole host of other technical components of SEO). One of the constants regarding SEO strategy for therapy and other helping websites is keyword research.
Keyword Research: Every page, every time.
We use a number of tools to inform keyword research, and we do the keyword research every time. This is key (see what I did there?) because it would be easy to get lazy or make assumptions based on previous search or keyword activity in the region. But, search behavior changes over time! For example, not many people were searching for “Online Therapy” in 2019. Globally, search volume started to increase for “online therapy,” “online counseling,” “telehealth,” and “video therapy” as 2020 started and progressed. In the United States, we’ve seen these trends change over the months. That’s why it is important to make sure we do the research for each new client in their region. Like universal screening for mental health issues, we have to keep this central to any comprehensive SEO training, service package, or strategy. This piece is the cornerstone of a comprehensive and successful SEO strategy that converts more ideal clients.
Now you know that SEO is, in fact, NOT dead.
We can absolutely be grateful that SEO is still relevant. And, we can talk about your concerns. Every SEO company is different, with a different focus for their clients. We highly recommend consulting with a couple of SEO companies, asking the tough questions, and making a decision that will be the best fit for YOU. No matter who you choose, we know that SEO is a worthwhile investment for private practice and small business owners.
Curious About SEO for Your Therapy Website?
Hopefully, you now know that not only is SEO not dead, but that there are some pretty amazing ways to help therapists. If you’re ready to begin optimizing your website to help you reach your ideal client on Google, we are ready to help! Follow these steps to begin SEO services with Simplified SEO consulting:
- Make an appointment for a free 30-minute consultation with a member of the Simplified SEO Consulting team
- Learn more about our SEO packages and training opportunities
- Start optimizing your website to get in front of more of the people who are looking for you
Other SEO Services Offered by Simplified SEO Consulting
The Simplified SEO Consulting team is passionate about providing SEO services for helping professionals and therapists. Our popular, comprehensive SEO services are included in our Done for You SEO Service packages. Our SEO staff team provides several SEO training opportunities. including our “Top of Search Engines” online course and 12 weeks of online video training. We also offer an SEO strategy package to learn more about SEO and what you can do to rank better on search engines.
About the Author: Danica Wolf, Director of SEO Services
Danica Wolf is an MSW with years of experience in the mental health field. First providing advocacy and education, then directing, our local campus Relationship and Sexual Violence Prevention Center. She spent years managing the website for that Center, then for her own birth business.
Soon after joining Simplified SEO Consulting in 2019, Danica quickly became a favorite among our clients! Now, Danica leads our team of SEO Specialists working on the Done For You and Alumni Care services. She loves interacting with small business owners around the world and watching their business grow as they start ranking well on websites. One of her favorite things about this work is hearing client success stories! Danica takes a very client-centered approach to optimizing and managing. Making sure websites not only rank well on Google but truly serve the needs of clients and potential clients who visit the site.