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5 Veterinary Clinic SEO Tips to Increase Local Rankings

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A local SEO campaign for a veterinary clinic helps local consumers find it when they are looking for a new vet clinic for their pet due to a relocation or when an emergency arises and their pet required medical attention. There are also first-time pet owners that need to bring their animal in for its shots and need to find a local veterinarian clinic.

Veterinary clinic SEO involves positioning your business at the top of Google’s search results, both in Google Search and Google Maps, but there is more to it than just being listed at or near the top. Pet owners want to find the best medical care for their beloved animals, which is why a professional website, positive online reputations, recent reviews, etc. all need to be part of the search engine optimization effort.

There are several ways to improve your vet clinic’s local SEO, requiring nothing more than your time and effort. Let’s go over some local search engine optimization tips for veterinary clinics that are easy to implement and can be done without tapping into your marketing budget.

1. Optimize Your Google My Business Profile

To be found at the top of Google’s local results, a veterinary SEO campaign needs to focus on optimizing the Google My Business profile for the clinic. Most local businesses have claimed their listing already, however, most are incomplete and not optimized for the best possible local discovery.

It’s important to complete the entire business profile, including the hours of operations, uploading images of the business, adding all contact options, and making sure the business address is listed exactly as it is on the veterinary clinic’s website.

Google’s local algorithm uses the address in the profile, which is then verified when returning local-intent searches. This is also how it pulls results for voice searches. If a consumer is located within a few miles of your business and they speak “veterinary clinic near me” into Google’s voice search your business can be shown if your GMB profile is correctly optimized.

You will want to be sure to write a description that highlights your specific veterinary clinic services and areas of focus while also mentioning your location. You can also enable special features, like text messaging through your Google listing, which can help increase your inbound inquiries.

Having previous customers leave a review on your GMB profile will also help your veterinary clinic show up higher in the Google Maps results, while also attracting more customers who will be looking to reviews when determining the best option for their beloved pet.

The more citations your veterinary clinic has online, the better, especially when they come from trusted online business directories such as the Yellow Pages and the Better Business Bureau. Being listed on the most popular business resources helps consumers find your veterinary clinic (yes, they are still used extensively) and you also get the added SEO benefit.

The search engines pull information from top directory websites and they also connoisseur it to be a good indication of a business being a strong recommendation. Updated listings, as well as consumer reviews and feedback on the listing, indicate that the business is still operational.

This is why having a consistent NAP (name, address, and phone number) on all of your directory listings is important. You should have your clinic’s address on your website’s contact page as well as located in the footer of your website. Following schema markup guidelines for your address formatting helps your local SEO tremendously.

Many listings also allow you to include a website link, and this helps to improve the authority of your site, and over time this helps all of your content get indexed faster and rank higher in the search results. Veterinary SEO is a long-term strategy, and if you pay attention to the little details in the early stages it will eventually snowball and your organic traffic numbers will continuously increase over time.

3. Be Active on GMB: Use Posts and Secure Veterinary Google Reviews

You already know how important it is to claim and optimize your Google My Business profile, but you cannot simply let it sit idle. Google has put a lot of effort into making its GMB listings more feature-rich for both the business and its users.

One of the newest features is what it refers to as ‘Posts,’ which turns your Google My Business profile into more of an interactive news feed, similar to a Facebook feed. You can post messages, containing news, information about your business, and helpful information that will educate those interested in finding out more information about your veterinary clinic.

The content you post here can also act as calls-to-action, helping to draw attention to your business in the search results. Google has recently been testing displaying posts in its search results and the Maps results.

Actively posting on your Google My Business page will help attract more customers to your veterinary clinic, and it’s a healthy local search engine optimization strategy as the algorithm takes note of click-through rates and engagement post-click.

4. Target Low Competition Keywords on Your Veterinary Clinic Blog

There is a big opportunity to attract organic traffic by creating a veterinary blog and publishing content that is optimized for low competition keywords. Consumers will often use questions when searching for common pet questions relevant to your location.

This is a great opportunity to introduce your veterinary clinic to potential customers using a non-advertisement approach. You can include a CTA at the end of each post that welcomes questions and inquiries regarding your clinic’s services.

Here are some examples of questions that could be used as blog post titles and optimized to attract search traffic:

  • What dog shots are required in [your location]?
  • How do I register my dog in [your location]?
  • What are the leash laws in [your location]?

Think of common questions both new and experienced pet owners ask that are specific to your location. These will be low competition terms to rank for and they will also attract local website visitors – the perfect ideal potential customer.

5. Improve Your Vet Clinic Website’s Speed & Performance

You can improve your veterinary search engine optimization if you improve the speed and load-time of your website. Google emphasizes user experience, and a fast website delivers the user a more pleasant experience for its users.

You can use Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool to test the speed of your website, and it provides you with two scores – a desktop and mobile score. There are also suggestions regarding what to fix to improve the speed at which your site loads. If you are on a shared web hosting plan you might also want to consider upgrading to a dedicated server or using a CDN (content delivery network) to speed up your veterinary clinic’s website.

If you are using WordPress as your CMS, disable and remove any plugins that are not necessary. These will often add extra javascript and code to your website, slowing it down tremendously.

Final Thoughts

By addressing the veterinary clinic SEO tips above, you can position your business at the top of Google, helping you attract new customers that need a vet for their pets. Many pet owners treat their animals as family members, so it’s no surprise that they are extremely thorough when seeking a new primary veterinarian.

If you have any questions regarding the local SEO tips we outlined above, or if you would like to learn more about the veterinary marketing services our agency provides, please feel free to contact us to set up a time to speak.

Our team of veterinary clinic SEO experts will be more than happy to answer your questions and review your current online visibility and search performance.

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