Technology is at the forefront of health and wellness today. With the click of a button, you can get information on any topic you desire. Search engines like Google, Bing, and Duckduckgo dictate what is seen by readers including those seeking any information on nutrition.
As a dietitian and business owner, you need to keep up with nutrition education and also be on the cutting edge of marketing and technology. You want to make sure people searching for nutrition topics will get your name placed into their hands.
One way to ensure you are reaching your ideal client is to be on page 1 of the Google search results.
So how do you get to the top of the list?
Three words: Search Engine Optimization or SEO for short.
This marketing practice is integral for health professionals to learn. It is a smart marketing tactic that will help grow your business.
It is important to note that hiring an SEO expert can also be very expensive. This can be problematic especially if you are just starting out and cannot spend thousands of dollars on a marketing agency.
Instead of spending a lot of money on personal SEO services, there is an easy and affordable approach to help you master SEO and get your website to the top of the search results.
This article discusses how to drive traffic to your website with the four pillars of Search Engine Optimization providing you with affordable SEO packages.
Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization or SEO online marketing for short. Search Engine Optimization is a process that makes a website appealing to different search engines in order to place it at the top of the search results. Ultimately giving you a higher rank and driving more free traffic to your site.
In other words, SEO is a way to gain more visitors. It is learning to write about things that people are already searching for.
Depending on the industry SEO tactics can vary but most of the strategy revolves around four pillars: keyword research, building backlinks, optimized content, and making a good website.
Keyword searches are different words and queries that people type into search engines like Google. These include words like “nutrition,” “weight loss,” and “meal planning tips.”
At the heart of SEO is learning to know what questions and keywords are being searched.
Knowing what queries are being asked the most will give you the ability to create content readers are already searching for.
Websites that contain articles and content with highly searched keywords have a better chance of being seen by readers.
Want to see what words are being searched for? Use the chrome extension Keywords Everywhere to learn how often terms are being searched for per month. This tool also gives you other related words that are also being highly Googled.
The volume of a keyword search is not the only important aspect of SEO. You also want to make sure that your website will be able to rank for that word.
This is because keywords with high volume searches can be competitive to rank for. For example, if you type in the word “meal plan” you will find those words are being searched 33,100 times per month. With such a high volume it could be very hard to compete with bigger websites.
That is why it is important to look for niche keywords with high volume that you can rank for. Once you know this ranking you will be able to target easy keywords that are also highly often searched.
Keyword Search Tools
Website ranking can be found with keyword search tools like KeySearch and SemRush. These tools will show how your own website ranks in relation to the competition. For example, a brand new website will have a harder time ranking certain words in comparison with a highly regarded health brand like Healthline or WebMD.
If you are just starting out KeySearch is a cost-effective tool that is easy to use (get an 18% discount when you use the code KSDISC).
There is some criticism of KeySearch and others have found that SemRush to be a little more accurate when it comes to rankings. However, I have been using KeySearch with our new website and have been able to find many high ranking keywords with a low competition score.
Once you find your keyword searches you can then start creating content around that searched query.
Building SEO Backlinks
Another factor of keyword search is to know how your website ranks in terms of domain authority (DA). Domain authority is a ranking score developed by an SEO company called Moz. This number predicts how well a website will rank on search engine results pages or SERPS.
It is calculated by a culmination of various facets of a website including how many other websites link to your website.
It ranges from one to 100. Websites with higher DA numbers have a higher strength. For example, websites like Healthline and Mayo Clinic have DAs in the 90s while the Academy of Dietetics website has a rank of 68 and the NJ Dietetic Association has a rank of 25.
One thing to note is that Google does not take this metric into account so you can have a lower DA and still rank high on google. For example, when you search the term “leaky gut treatment” the first page lists a dietitian’s website who has a domain authority of only 44.
So how do you improve your DA? Link building. Getting other respectable websites to link back to your articles will improve your DA as well as your credibility with Google. Having relationships with quality websites will look good in the eyes of the search engine and will make them want to put you at the top of their list.
Link building can be done by guest posting on reputable websites as well as sending pitches to writers who may need expert opinion quotes. Sharing your articles in groups like Dietitians on the Blog to get meaningful comments on individual blog posts is another way to increase your website DA.
Optimized Content and why Google likes to EAT
Google is the most used search engine so what they say goes. So anyone who runs a website with content that impacts someone’s future happiness, health, or wealth of users is going to be under scrutiny when it comes to ranking.
That is why it is so important to feed Google some very high-quality content. This is content that is of a high level of Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trustworthiness (EAT).
Google has implemented the EAT guidelines for these “Your Money or Your Life” (YMYL) pages as a way to protect searchers when searching for things tied to health and wealth.
The nice thing about these new rules is that dietitians have a leg up on the competition. Just having the R.D. initials after your name gives you an authoritative voice in the eyes of Google.
However, the credentials alone will not get your posts up to the top. This involves incorporating evidence-based research that validates content and reliability.
Creating a Good Website that Will Rank for SEO
There are 1.5 billion websites on the internet. A way to stand out from the crowd is to create a visually appealing website that is easy to navigate and runs fast.
Why You Should Use WordPress as a Website Builder
WordPress, Wix, and Squarespace are all viable options for making a visually appealing website.
Using a website builder that is optimized for SEO is the best way to get seen by potential clients and consumers already searching for certain nutrition topics.
WordPress is the best website builder to use if SEO is your goal.
Content Will Bring Them There
Content is king when it comes to your website, but it is not the only thing that matters to readers. Once you get someone to come to your site you want to keep them there so they are more likely to convert to a client.
This means having a clean, engaging, and fast loading website.
Create An Engaging Website Design that Can Be found
I am much more likely to engage with a brand if they have a nice website. If someone has a poorly designed site that is hard to navigate it deters me from wanting to work with them.
WordPress is a great platform for building a pretty website.
Having a web designer skilled in WordPress is one way to create a killer design. Custom themes can get expensive so if you are looking to DIY-it buying a pre-existing theme is the next best option.
There are many companies that create template themes to use on your website. For this website, I use the Mai Lifestyle Pro theme by WPEngine. On the Thyroid Nutrition Educators website, I use the Infinity Pro theme. You can see how each was customized from the original version.
WPEngine creates a lot of really great customizable website themes including Studiopress in the Genesis framework. Divi is a custom builder that has been recognized as a great option for creating WordPress websites.
Want to learn how to master WordPress? Check out these courses and tutorials.
The Speed of Your Website Affects SEO
Aside from design, you want a site that runs fast. How many times have you closed out of a web page because it took too long to open? Making a speedy website is important. One way to improve your site speed
People are on their phones more than ever and mobile usage is at an all-time high. Making sure your website is mobile-friendly is important for keeping readers engaged. These elements will provide a good user experience and improve your SEO.
Measure Your Site Speed
See how your website measures up with Google’s Site Speed Insights page. Simply type in your website URL and you can see how it ranks on both desktop and mobile.
If you find your site speed is slow one way to help improve the speed is with the WP Rocket plugin this plugin will amp up the speed of your website.
Benefits of this plugin include the following:
- Improving Search Engine Optimization
- Improve the indexing of your website in search engines. This is a fancy way of saying that it will add your webpages to search engines like Google
- Reduces the weight of your website files which means a faster load time for your visitors
- Improving the load time by loading images only as your visitor scrolls down the page
Learn more about WP Rocket here
Why Dietitians Need to Learn SEO
If you are using Facebook ads or other paid sources to generate traffic to your website and business you may want to consider looking into optimizing your search traffic instead.
SEO is a great way to reach a wider audience and help more people. If you find that your current blogging efforts have little traffic you may not be writing about topics that clients are searching for.
For example, if you specialize in treating women with diabetes and you are looking for more clients you can utilize SEO as a way to drive traffic to your website with an article on a hot topic of interest. The words “diabetic diet food list” are being searched 5,400 times per month.
Knowing this is a popular search term you can formulate an article around this keyword that will appeal to readers with a call to action about your nutrition services.
How To Start Implementing SEO as a Dietitian
She had become a success with SEO and had been gaining momentum in her organic traffic on her brand new site Functional Nutrition Answers.
Within just 10 months she was bringing in 20,000 visits per month. This was strictly from Google traffic with NO paid advertising. She was also only writing just one article a month.
Julson took what she learned and implemented it into a course for dietitian and nutrition professionals who wanted to improve their website rankings and make more money.
I took this course last January and used it to build out a brand new website in April. Using her tactics we have had increases in our search traffic within just a few months.
Sessions from March 2019 through December 2019
Users from March 2019 through December 2019
Number of Organic Search Traffic Per month March through December
Since writing this post our search sessions have more than doubled from December to January. They went from 714 in December to 1,550 in January. The organic search increased as well. It went from 243 to 560.
Learn More about the SEO Made Simple Course
This self-study course offers lifetime content available. So you can go back and read up on the topic at any time. The course will teach you the 4 pillars of SEO (keyword research, optimized content, backlinks, and creating a good website). You will learn how to:
- Effortlessly attract your ideal client by creating content they are searching for.
- Write killer content that Google and your readers will love.
- Build your organic search traffic so you can start earning REAL online income.
- Network online to build more links to your website.
- Speed up your site and improve the user experience (very important to Google!)
Want more information? Below is a breakdown of the 6 lessons in the course:
- Learn what SEO is, why you should care about it, and how to get set up with tracking tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console.
- How to find high-volume low-competition topics your ideal client is searching for so YOU can get found by answering their questions.
- A step-by-step guide to writing kick-ass blog posts that Google and your readers will love.
- Proven strategies for getting people to link back to your content, which is super important for ranking in Google!
- How to show off your expertise, authority, and trustworthiness as nutrition professionals.
- Tutorials for making your website fast and secure and providing a great user experience for your readers.
This course has been so helpful in growing our website. Learn at your own leisure with the recorded sessions. Another great bonus is that you can get 21 CEU credits for this course! Get more details and sign up here!