Most people are aware that search engine optimization makes your website and company more discoverable to potential admits. In order for this to work, your site has to target the exact audience you want. For some industries and companies, this audience can be anywhere and everywhere. However, for most of the behavioral health industry, the target audience is in a smaller area, whether that be a state, county, or city. So, what is the difference between Local SEO strategy and national or international SEO strategy?

What Is the Difference Between Local SEO and National SEO?

Search engine optimization has many different methods and approaches. While the overall goal across these approaches is the same (increase traffic and conversions), these separate strategies allow each industry and business to hone in on the exact users who will need their product.

Targeting different locations can be split into three categories: local, national, and international SEO. The approach to each of these categories is different not only in terms of on-page optimization, but also link-building and content.

Local SEO, of course, targets a much more specific area than the other two categories. If you are a doctor’s office in Los Angeles, you do not want your site to end up in the search engine results page of New York. Your bounce rate will be high and your conversions will be very low. 

National SEO allows companies to target search engine results pages across the country. If your business is remote or has multiple locations within your country, but does not service consumers abroad, this strategy is for you.

These two categories do have overlapping strategies and the same foundation. They both need link-building, content, keyword-targeting, technical, and CRO within their strategies. For example Technical SEO will be the same between Local SEO and National SEO sites. Site speed, duplicate content, broken backlinks, and more matter to both approaches.

However, the specifics of which keywords to target on core pages, which content topics to write about, and which directories to get listed on, for instance, are very different between the two strategies.

Why Is Local SEO Important?

It does sound appealing to be able to be discoverable to everyone in the country, just in case users are willing to travel. You can target both local and national SEO. However, we are here to explain why local SEO is more important within this business.

Local SEO allows businesses that do not work remotely or in multiple locations to be discoverable to people specifically in their area. Without Local SEO marketers would have to target the general public online, and the chance of conversions, admits, and clients would be much lower.

Local SEO is also very helpful to the user. Google has allowed for users to simply enter the service or the product they want, and the search engine results page will usually present options to acquire this desired item physically close to the user. 

Google My Business and Yelp have created platforms that allow users to immediately view ratings and images of these services/items, ensuring that their search is easy and efficient. For the service providers, marketers, and business owners, this means that it is crucial to take advantage of these platforms. 

National SEO can still be targeted within blogs or resource pages. Content pieces addressing broader topics within health and addiction can rank on search engine results pages across the nation, and even across the world. However, Local SEO is the key to turning traffic into quality leads, quality leads into admits, and admits into recovered, happy people.

Tips For Local SEO Strategy For Healthcare

Let’s break down a few tips for your Local SEO strategy into three categories:

  • External SEO & links
  • On-page local keyword-targeting
  • Local content topics

External Local SEO and Link-Building

As mentioned above, Google My Business and Yelp are critical to your local SEO strategy. They are the top results that pop up when users search for addiction treatment, after ads and the hotline number.

While paid advertising for drug rehabs is an important strategy in order to dominate the SERPs, many users will rely on these Google My Business featured snippets because they have reviews, addresses, and other information right off the bat.

So, how do you get your center featured in these results? The first step is to create a Google My Business profile and then optimizing it to be as user friendly as possible. This means adding images, information about your mission and services, and more.

Next, and most importantly, obtaining reviews for Google My Business and Yelp is absolutely crucial. This will not only help increase your ranking within these platforms, but it will encourage users to trust your business more and greatly increase the amount of traffic your website receives and calls you get. 

In addition, if a bad review is left, it is important to be active on these profiles and respond so as to appear involved and explain the reason that the user had a bad experience for other potential admits.

On-Page Keyword Targeting For Local Areas

In order to utilize this next strategy, you need to narrow down a couple specific areas you want to target. These can be towns, cities, counties, or whole states. 

Then, keyword research will take place in order to find out which of these keywords has the highest volume, but also is the least competitive. 

Targeting different locations within your area on different pages allows you to hone in on a very specific location, and a slightly broader one that encompasses that one. So, for example, you could choose to target Seattle on some pages, and King’s County on others. Just ensure that you are not keyword cannibalizing (targeting the same keyword on multiple pages), as that could hurt rankings.

In addition, it is always the best policy to go for the lowest hanging fruit first, so try to target the keyword with the lowest difficulty more, as you will see the fastest results from this.

Blog Topics for Local Content Marketing

Last but certainly not least, content. Content marketing within Healthcare is crucial. It is also very important to ensure that this content targets local issues, as well as national ones.

For example, if your state or city has just changed a law or a policy about healthcare or the addiction treatment industry, write a blog around this. 

Discuss what resources your local area has, and why users can be benefited by going to treatment in this area. This not only creates the opportunity for your site to rank for more keywords within your target area, but it may help convince users to contact you.

How MGMT Digital Can Help Develop Your Local SEO or National SEO Strategy

Running a healthcare facility and/or working at one is a lot of work, and we would like to take some of that off your plate so you can focus on your patients. MGMT Digital is a boutique digital marketing agency that is specialized in behavioral health marketing. Our team has a large amount of experience in SEO and in marketing within this industry in general. Contact us today to see how we can help take your Local SEO to the next level!