Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the act of performing on-site and off-site optimization so that your website appears prominently in search results.
Developing a dynamic SEO campaign for your practice requires plenty of hard work and hours of perseverance. At the end of it, you’re left with a sense of achievement (and exhaustion). Does this sound similar to another time-consuming hobby many of us enjoy on the weekends?
Surprisingly, SEO has many similarities to planting a garden. Much like planting flowers, your online performance has the potential to wilt faster than it can grow, which is why it is so important that you have an active SEO campaign in place for the entire life of your website.
Creating a sanctuary of relaxation and fulfilling your botanic goals requires thorough planning. You can’t start planting trees without having a visual representation to aid in the design.
It’s essential for any successful landscape project and keeps everything within budget from concept through to completion. The same can be said for an SEO campaign which also always requires a game plan.
Preparing the Ground
After the planning stage, comes the initial work on the foundation. In gardening terms, it’s essential to have nutrient-rich soil to provide optimal conditions for young roots to grow.
Websites must also follow suit and have the initial architecture to support and sustain growth. All this should be developed with the search engine algorithms in mind. Appropriate use of metadata, URL navigation structure and effective microdata such as schema are just a few of the fundamentals. Get these wrong in the initial stage and your “garden” won’t flourish.
Planting & Sprouting
When planting a variety of shrubs and trees, each species may require a different method. Without tailoring the approach, a garden can quickly become a disaster and lack potential.
Similarly, SEO requires an acute level of optimization for each individual page. Focusing on a primary dental service & a single topic on any given page is important for improving placement within search results. As with the sprouting stage of plants, this process will continue throughout the initial campaign stages.
A well-nourished garden is a happy garden. Adding fertilizer may not be essential but it can have a major impact – protecting plants, encouraging growth and improving the overall beauty. In SEO terms, this translates to the constant application of relevant and engaging content to a website.
Not only should this continue to attract visitors as other websites or citations link to it, but this quality is also recognized by the search engine bots. Since they favor the websites that offer the best user experience, it’s essential to have original and meaningful content.
Pruning & Maintenance
As mentioned earlier, gardening is a thankless task and doesn’t finish once the landscaping has been completed. To keep a garden looking good, it requires an ongoing level of care. The SEO equivalent to pruning and maintenance is the editing and reviewing stage.
Search engines always assess the last date of content revision to understand how up-to-date and therefore worthy of high rankings a website may be. For this reason, it’s important to edit and update non-evergreen content to continue making it relevant for your users. At this stage, other SEO tweaks can be made to ensure you stay at the top of your game.
By adopting a strategy of planning, preparation, launch, continuous updates, and regular optimization your practice can create a vey solid basis for great visibility within relevant search results.
If you have any SEO questions or your practice is in need of SEO support please reach out to our team!
—Naomi Newell, Lead SEO Specialist, Sesame Communications