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Healthcare Healthcare

The Veterinary SEO Guide

Read this SEO guide for veterinarians to help your website rank higher.
Caitlyn Blair

How To Get Started With Veterinary SEO

As a veterinary clinic, you might know how valuable SEO (search engine optimization) can be for your digital presence, but you might not know where to begin. We know that the topic of SEO can be intimidating, but getting started is the hardest part. Once you have built a solid foundation for your SEO strategy, it will be easier to draw in more pet owners to your clinic and make a major impact on your success. So where do you get started? How can you help your website compete on search engines that show thousands of other competing websites?

Search engines like Google implement hundreds of ranking factors to determine which websites will appear first in a standard search. This system used to be easier to “game.” Now, these search engines have adapted to encourage the highest quality content to appear first. While this might seem like a lot of work, it is actually a positive for many veterinarians.

As veterinarians, you entered this field because you genuinely love animals and want to help pet owners. Approaching your digital content with this mindset will not only help your ranking on Google, but it will help those who come to your practice and keep them coming back.

Let’s take a look at some simple steps you can take to rank higher on Google.

Research and optimize keywords

When your future visitors are looking for veterinary services online, they might begin with broad keywords like “veterinarian near me.” While these terms tend to yield a lot of searches and visibility, these are also the terms that are competing the most for users’ attention.

Researching more specific or niche keywords, also known as long-tail keywords, can help your practice strike a perfect balance between terms that have good visibility and little competition. Being more specific with keywords will also attract pet owners who are in need of particular services for their pets. These searchers tend to have high intent, which also makes it more likely that they will contact you.

For example, while ranking for “veterinarian near me” might be difficult, ranking for “Austin dog vaccinations” will make it easier to bring traffic to your website since there is generally less competition for that specific search.

Create high quality content

When you have a good idea of what keywords you would like to rank for, start to create high quality content catered to your audience and post it throughout your platforms. Blogs are the easiest way to get started with this, but you can also utilize videos, ebooks, and podcasts.

When you create content surrounding these keywords, you’ll want to write specifically for topics that the pet owners you help might search for. Think about common concerns that your pet owners bring to you and address them in your content. Not only will this help your website rank, but it will show the pet owners that you care about their needs.

So how do you know when your content can be considered “high quality?” Some of the factors you can consider are the average time users spend on each page, the bounce rate, and the click-through rate. Google will consider the way that readers are engaging with your content and so should you.

Localize your content and practice

One of the best ways to establish a niche with your content and keywords is to make them relevant to your community. Pet owners want to trust that they can access a clinic in their local area when their pets need you the most. They will be searching accordingly. This means your content should include your city, neighborhood, zip codes, and other related names to your keywords.

Ranking on organic Google search results is certainly an important element of SEO, but it is not the only one. There are other elements of SEO to pay attention to, such as the local 3-pack. The local 3-pack is a map listing of three businesses that appear when users search for a practice near them or near a specific location.

Be sure to claim your Google My Business profile as well. Listing your business name, address, and phone number consistently across your website, review sites, listings, and directories will help your practice become more visible on search engines.

Review technical SEO elements

Creating a great website that ranks highly is a marathon, not a sprint. It requires continuous effort and motivation to stay updated on the latest best practices. There are also some more technical aspects of SEO that you might not be able to dedicate time to. After all, the pets in your clinic are your number one priority. A team of SEO professional SEO experts can help you with aspects like page speed and the number of redirects on your site. If you are running a slow website or one with lots of pages that redirect to other URLs, it creates a bad experience for readers and will not rank as highly.

Many of your future visitors are spending most of their online time on their smartphones, so you cannot discount the importance of mobile responsiveness. Making it convenient for them to access your content on their phones will show them that you care about their experience. It also makes it easier for them to contact you in a time of need.

Track and measure your results

Once you have established your SEO strategy, it is important to track your efforts, but the best results will take time. Ranking on Google and other search engines is not an overnight process, but there are steps you can take to understand your trajectory.

For example, you can look at keyword rankings, organic traffic, your click-through rate, the way visitors are engaging with your pages, what pages they visit the most, and what channels are bringing in the most traffic. This will help you tailor your efforts to your audience’s needs and allow you to serve them more effectively.

Want more guidance on how to improve your veterinary clinic’s SEO? Contact the marketing team at Scorpion.

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