therapy website seo

First, What is SEO? 

There are over 644 billion websites out there, and your therapy website is one of them. How do you get your site to rise above the pack? It’s a fact that most clients don’t go past the first page when they’re looking for a therapist. If your website doesn’t show up on the first page for “therapists in your town”, for example, they simply won’t find you. So how do you get them to?

One way is through your SEO. SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is a set of marketing strategies designed to get search engines, like Google, to notice to you. And you want these search engines to notice you because if they do, they will put your website higher up in the search results. The higher you appear in search results, the more people click to visit your website, engage with your business, and hopefully contact you. Then your website will finally be doing what it’s supposed to: bring in clients!

There are several different categories of strategies to use to improve you therapy website SEO, including things you do on the front-end of your website (such as using relevant keywords on your site), things you do behind the scenes of the site (like changing the alternate text used to describe photos), and things you do off the website (like guest blogging or social media).

Before you begin with SEO, here are two important warnings:

  1. Do not get an SEO professional on Fiverr. Actually, for the type of business you are running, as long as you are using a website platform that is “SEO friendly”, you can do a majority of the SEO you need by yourself through learning. But if you do decide to work with someone, be sure they are reputable.  Fiverr is not a great place to ensure that. Also, do not work with anyone who promises to get you on the first page of google. Even the A+ SEO pros cannot promise that. SEO is not something you want to mess up.  Hiring the wrong person to do SEO for you could set you back thousands of dollars.
  2. Do not try to trick google into getting higher rankings. Google can tell the difference between naturally built online relationships and spam blog comments, for example. They can tell when you stuff your websites with a ton of keywords without any actually helpful content. Do all of your therapy website SEO through natural relationships and natural wording.


 Start Here: Learn more about SEO

While there are advanced SEO strategies that require training or a professional to work with, most clinicians with a private practice don’t need more than the basics to know to do well with SEO. Here are a few great places to learn more about SEO:

Moz – Beginner Guide to SEO

What I like about the Moz guide is that it’s easy to read and navigate through, as a well-made SEO guide should be!

SEO for Beginners Udemy Course

I’m a visual learner myself, so my first steps in learning SEO where video tutorials. It helped me get a faster grasp on the topic than I would naturally by reading. This link is a Free course on Udemy.

Google SEO Starter Guide

What better place to get information on SEO than from Google? When you’re ready to dive in, here is Google’s Guide.

Want to learn SEO?

I’ll walk you through step by step. Enroll in the SEO Basics for Therapists Course!

Take the SEO Basics Course

Then Create a List of Keywords

Keywords are the search terms people use to find your website. They can be single words or phrases. They might variations on searches for you by the population you work with, your specialty, or even with an answer to a question. Take a look at Psychology Today and all the options they give to find a therapist :gender, ethnicity, modality, and payment options. These are all types of keywords you might use in blog posts and pages on your website. Another good place to start for ideas for keywords is to use a keyword tool, like or to see what comes up in Google autocomplete as you type. Here’s a sample list:

Cognitive Behavioral Therapist
Teen Therapist
Marriage Counseling
How to stop panic attacks
Is my husband abusive
Mindfulness Exercises


Start Using Keywords in Page and Blog Posts

Rather than unnaturally stuffing a bunch of keywords all into one page of your website, choose one keyword phrase for one page or one blog post at a time. Add that keyword to the pages on your website, as naturally as possible.


Change Your Website’s Back End Tags

If you have access to the back-end functions of your website, be sure to change the h1 and image alt tags on each page, for each keyword. For help with that, do a google search for how to change the h1/alt tags for your website platform or theme (google: “how to change the alt tags in weebly” for example).


Set Up Google Analytics & Google Webmaster Tools Accounts

Through these you can verify ownership of your site, find out if there are issues with your site, submit your site to be indexed faster, find out what keywords are leading people to your site, where visitors are falling away, and what percentage of visitors are meeting your site goals (like filling out a contact form). To start, just sign up for these two accounts, in this order, and follow their initial prompts.


Create Links To Your Site

You’ll want to create links to the pages of your website, both internally (within your site) and externally (from other sites back to yours. In your own site, you can link to other pages through calls to action, as well as links mentioning other blog posts. Externally, there are many ways to link back to your site, like through social media, youtube videos, some therapy databases, or through guest blog posting.


Make Your Website User-Friendly

The harder your website is to read and navigate, the faster people will leave your site. And the faster they leave, the lower the search engines rank your website because they give priority to well-made sites. Three things to do are to make sure your contact information is visible on every page, put on a few (five or so) items in the navigation menu, and have one clear call-to-action on every page. A call-to-action is an action you’d like the visitor to do after they read your page. Perhaps, contact you, subscribe to a newsletter or share your blog post. Helping our visitors engage with your website, helps the search engines see your website is valuable.

These are a few of the best places to start with SEO for your practice. Hoping for good SEO for your website and business!

Want to learn SEO?

I’ll walk you through step by step. Enroll in the SEO Basics for Therapists Course!

Take the SEO Basics Course