In today’s world, an online presence is essential as you build your private practice. It demonstrates professionalism and introduces you to potential clients.
Branding for Private Practice
– Choose your color scheme and fonts.
– Try to use photos that fit with your color scheme / feel.
– Remove all host (Wix, wordpress, Squarespace) advertising for a professional looking site.
– Make an easy – Create a reference document listing your color scheme hex codes (Hex codes are numbers you can use to choose your specific color) and what fonts you use for each level of Headings.
Tip: Create a Pinterest board with 10+ websites you like the look, feel and organization of. See if you can identify some patterns for what you want on your own websiteHave cohesive colors, images, fonts
Here’s a version of Speech Therapy Connect’s board –
Developing your Online Presence
– Website domain name: As you decide your company name, check to ensure the domain name is available. Consider variations and common misspellings. Ensure that if a potential client enters in the wrong email address that they won’t go to a competitor or an inappropriate website.
– Social Media – Decide what platforms you might need and claim your name.
– Get on Google! Submit your website sitemap to search engines, like Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc. One of the fastest ways to get found by a search engine is to tell them that you exist! Here’s how to do it for Google:
Remember: It takes TIME to show up in Google searches – 6-18 months is not unusual. Sign up with Google sooner rather than later to get the process started. Then be patient as you regularly update your website, including using relevant long-tail keywords. If you want to show up first page in search results for Speech Therapists in your area, Google needs to know that you’re IMPORTANT!
– Submit your website to directories, including Speech Therapy Connect’s directory.
– Update your website regularly.
– Reassess Every 3 Months. Track your statistics in Google Analytics. How is the traffic on your website? Where is the traffic coming from? What is your bounce rate? Are you getting the type of referrals you want?
Creating a website is easier than ever. You can choose WordPress, Wix, Squarespace, Weebly. Consider factors including ease-of-use and cost. Consider hiring someone to create your website for you. Hiring a professional can reduce stress, save your dozens of hours. Use their expertise to save you hours and hours of time, stress, and give your website the professional touch.
Regardless of the platform you choose and if you DIY or hire a pro, here are some website MUSTS:
– Intuitive Navigation
– Mobile-Responsive – your website adapts to the user’s device; it looks just as good on a phone or tablet as it does on a desktop. This is a MUST.
– SSL – Security certificate. This is included Free with Squarespace. This is required if users submit any information on your site. Google search engines prioritizes websites that have an SSL, and it adds a layer of reassurance and professionalism to your website.
– Cohesive Branding for a professional feel.
– Label your photos and “alt-descriptors” with your keywords, while describing the photo. Describing the photo in the alt-descriptions improves ADA accessiblity
– Be sure your location and contact information is on every page. Make it easy for potential clients to contact you.
DID YOU KNOW? Directory level Members of Speech Therapy Connect have access to FREE SEO reviews.
How to develop your Professional Social Media Presence
Step 1: Consider who your ideal client is. Consider their age range? Income? Are they parents of young children? (Check out Facebook Groups) Professionals? (Check out LinkedIn)
Step 2: Check out the demographics of the various social media platforms. Wherever your ideal client is, that’s where you want a presence
Step 3: Focus on 1-2 social media platforms to focus your attention and be present. Don’t spread yourself too thin. Social Media takes time and attention for regular posting and interaction. Short on time? Consider outsourcing your posts.
Step 4: Reassess every 6 months. Track your statistics. Are your followers increasing? Are you driving traffic to your websites? Getting contacts / referrals?
Are you getting results?
Great job! Keep at it!
Change up your game plan:
Change how you’re posting (contact me or check out the Facebook group to learn ideas for various platforms)
Consider focusing on a different platform.
Other ways to improve SEO for your speech therapy private practice
Have lengthy, informative blog posts filled with “long tail keywords”
Have other websites (like a directory) talk about your company (with a link to your website)
Regularly update your website
Guest post on other people’s blogs/websites (Featured members of Speech Therapy Connect have the opportunity to guest blog)