Veterinary Website Link Building | Improve your veterinary practice’s search engine rankings with DIY link building
It is no surprise that practices ranking high in search engine results have an advantage when it comes to acquiring new clients. Link building is an essential step in helping your practice gain higher rankings in search engines. The theory is the more links your website has from other websites, the more authoritative search engines think your business is for search terms. In order to start building links, you have to understand how the keywords in a link impact rankings. Let’s look at an example of how influential link building can be on rankings.
Adobe ranking for “click here”
If you go to Bing or Google and search for the keywords “click here”, the number one or two result is Adobe Reader. The reason for this is that millions of websites refer users to Adobe’s site to download Adobe Reader to open a PDF. You will likely recognize the following phrase: “If you are having trouble viewing this document, click here to download Adobe Reader.” In this example, so many webmasters think that this particular page is relevant for the keywords “click here”, that Adobe has managed to rank well even though the text “click here” doesn’t even appear on Adobe’s page. It is no surprise that some SEO experts estimate that 75% of a website’s organic rankings are attributed to inbound links.
In the Adobe example, the words “click here” are referred to as the “anchor text” of the link. When you build links on the web, you want to ask for a link with anchor text that will help people find you on the web. A link with the anchor text that is the website URL is less beneficial because it does not provide search engines the information they need to determine what your website is all about. For example, the link “http://thevetmarketingfirm” does not help PSI rank for any search term keyword phrase but the link “Veterinary Marketing” linking to VMF’s website does help VMF rank for “Veterinary Marketing.”
When your practice is building links, what keywords should you choose? That is not a simple answer and will require some research. One thing you can do is add a form field to your new client form that asks new clients what search term, besides the name of your practice, they would use to find you on Bing or Google. VMF carries out extensive keyword research which is great but you can also carry approximate monthly searches of keywords on Google’s Keyword Tool. For example, if you have a practice in Tampa, you could type in the search term “Tampa Veterinary Hospital” (see picture below) and find that there are approximately 320 local monthly searches on Google for that term and that there is a lot of competition for that search term. You can type in whatever you think people search to find your practice and then based on the search volume, you can create a keyword list of five to ten keywords that you would like to rank for.
Once you have created your keyword list, you are now armed with the keywords for your anchor text to be used in your link building. Link building is a person-to-person process where you exchange links with other business website owners. For example, if you have a client or friend that owns a salon, you can ask them if they want to exchange links. You can publish a “Links Page” to your site and have a place to exchange links with other business owners or website owners. Even your son’s website linking to your practice with the right anchor text can boost your rankings. Just be sure to first see where you rank in Google and Bing (i.e. number 5 for “Tampa Veterinary Hospital”) so that you can measure the impact of your efforts.
If you are interested in formulating a veterinary SEO and marketing strategy that involves link building to better your search rankings, have a look at our plans.