November 10, 2020

When developing a marketing strategy for your medical practice, you need to consider both SEO and SEM. These terms cover different aspects of using search engines to gain visibility online and guide patients to your website, where they hopefully make the choice to learn more about your services. As you analyze your office’s goals, knowing how to use SEO and SEM can help you increase your return and use your money and time effectively.  

The difference between SEO and SEM

Before you can use SEO and SEM successfully, you must first understand the differences between the two.

What is SEO?

SEO stands for search engine optimization, which is the process of increasing traffic to your website and focusing on your target audience by ranking high on search engines when someone searches for a word or phrase related to your line of work. While it is common for businesses to pay for someone to handle the SEO of a website, this method relies entirely on free, organic strategies. There are several essential components that affect how well a site is optimized for search engines:

  • Keyword optimization: Choosing the right keywords and phrases and utilizing them effectively is the most important part of on-page SEO. This involves performing keyword research, considering placement of words, and creating content.
  • Backlinking: One way to efficiently boost your site’s reputation is by including backlinks to other trustworthy sources throughout your content. You should also manage any other sites that link to your page and consider disavowing any questionable sources.
  • Crawlability: A high-functioning backend is also important for SEO. Having a site map, ensuring the server is secure, and hosting pages that load quickly all contribute to the technical crawlability of the site.

What is SEM?

Rather than rely on organic content to boost your office’s website, you can also include search engine marketing in your strategy. This practice uses paid advertisements to make a site more visible on search engines.

SEM often refers to paid-per-click advertising, which means you are only charged for the ad if the patient clicks on it. However, like SEO, keyword research is essential for ensuring a large number of high-quality leads encounter the ad.

How to utilize both SEO in and SEM in a campaign

Most marketing campaigns benefit from using a combination of SEO and SEM. Knowing how much to use of each depends on your budget, current goals, industry, and website performance.

For new offices with the primary goal of gaining brand awareness and visibility, SEM offers immediate results. Even if the website is not optimized, it can still gain visibility while you finetune those details. If keywords are very competitive for your industry, PPC ads make it easier to appear on the search engine ranking page than it would with SEO.

However, SEO offers long-lasting results that are not limited by a temporary ad. For well-established brands with quality organic content and a strong website, improving SEO has notable benefits.

Take your marketing efforts to the next level

At Doctor Genius, we understand how SEM and SEO work together to make a marketing campaign successful. Ask about our content marketing and digital advertising services when you call us today. Move forward with confidence that potential patients can find you on search engines.

Doctor Genius, located at 16800 Aston Street, Suite 270, Irvine, CA 92606, provides a range of services for practice success. We seek to meet our clients’ needs by providing a variety of marketing, SEO, practice optimization tools, and coaching to transform the healthcare experience. Though we work to provide the most accurate information, the content found on this website is solely intended for entertainment purposes. Therefore, we cannot guarantee that the information provided is entirely correct. You may not use the information on this site to cure, prevent, or diagnose a perceived medical issue. If you have healthcare-related needs, please speak directly to a healthcare professional. Never self-perform medical treatments discussed on this website. All images displayed are also for entertainment purposes only, and personal experiences may differ. Please note that the business tactics mentioned on this site might not be applicable to your industry or practice.