Your Website Should Be “Under Construction”

Medical marketing enterprises.  Every great website should be under constructionEvery great website should always be “under construction.”  Of the three types of sites;  resource, marketing and interactive, only the resource site is ever really finished.

And you know I’m not talking about web design.

Great websites must remain dynamic whether by adding a constant stream of great content or with user generated comment vis-a-vis threads and conversations.

Content Marketing is Best

Blogging, or content marketing, remains the most important marketing strategy for your medical practice or small business.  While many businesses promote their use of a social media marketing strategy, blogging remains #1 in terms of ROI, branding and value.

The success of content marketing can be easily measured.  Visitors, bounce rate, comments, click through rates are all metrics showing the likes and needs of your patients, your customers.

The expense of time spent on a social media campaign is less tangible perhaps only because social media efforts ultimately draw attention to a great website that is “under construction.”

Value, Dedication, Commitment

Your content provides your patients with value.  Your articles provide solutions (answers) to their health specific questions.  Moreover, your consistent writing also displays a level of dedication and commitment that sets you apart from your competitors.

Value is the key to any website, but by continued and consistant writing, your dedication and commitment turns you into an industry expert.

Your content also remains the key factor to obtaining great SEO…unmatched and immesurable with any social media campaign.

What Can You Do?

Develop a long range objectives for your practice, i.e. define your marketing goals.

Write articles consistently on topics related to your long range initiative (SEO best practice).

With time, your articles will begin to reach out to your patients, compelling them to write and leave comments.  Make sure to answer each of the comments in a timely manner, thus creating a dialogue.  This visible interaction and engagement is the heart and soul of a blog and will eclipse any social media based campaign with respect to ROI, branding and providing value to your patients.

Both content marketing and engaging your patients online present time challenges and require consistent and continued publications and responses.  

A great website, therefore, is never completed and, hence, is always “under construction.”

To Your Growth And Success!


Randall V. Wong, M.D.
Medical Website Optimization

Google Plus: Lots to “Like”

Google Plus and Author Rank, Medical Marketing Enterprises.There are 3 reasons to use Google Plus.  After starting your Facebook, I recommend starting your Google Plus Account.

Your Google + account will now get you noticed on a Google Places, can aggregate any reviews about your practice (from other sites other than Google), selectively share information via Circles with new and old colleagues and starts your Author Ranking!

Google Local and Business Page

Starting a Google + Business page simply requires a free Gmail email address.  Follow the directions to get your practice indexed on Google +.

As Facebook and Google Plus plan their local search strategies, you want to make sure either you create your business page or claim one which already exists.  Simply make sure your contact information is correct.  With time, you can add more information.

Google Circles: Selective Sharing

A unique feature of Google + are the “circles.”  Circles are different groups of people based upon a common interest or relationship, for example, Friends, Family, Business, etc.

This allows you to pick and choose the group of friends with whom you’d like to share information. You can use “circles” to customize your communications….you can tailor who you’d simply like to follow versus people you’d like to share information.

At the outset, Circles are the same as “Friends” on FaceBook, but Friends lack the ability to share vs. follow and sharing may not reach all of your followers. (Facebook does not share all of your posts with all of your followers).

Circles allows  you to wear several hats yet use the same account.

Author Rank

Author Rank is the newest variable introduced last summer for SEO.  Simply put, author rank, measures your expertise and contribution to the Internet on any particular subject.  How your Author Rank is computed is another post.  The greater your Author Rank, the more credible and trusted you are as an expert.

The higher your PageRank, the higher your rankings.  Now, the better your Author Rank and PageRank, the higher your rankings.

This means two articles with very similar content, i.e. with the same PageRank, will now be ranked differently based upon Author Rank…the article written by the author with the highest rank (i.e. trust and credibility) wins!

Google Authorship via Google Plus Profile

Establish your Google Authorship!  The next goal is to inform Google which is/are your website(s).  Uniting your Google Plus profile with your particular website(s) alerts Google of your Authorship.

In your Google Plus profile, list the website(s) to which you contribute.  In your websites, attach the code to your Google Plus profile.  This is most easily done by creating a hyperlink using your name as anchor text back to your Google Plus profile page, or make sure you are using Genesis on WordPress!

WordPress and Genesis

The newest version of Genesis recognizes author rank and allows you to marry your user profile with your Google + profile by simply entering your profile code into your WordPress user profile….done!

To your Success!

Randall V. Wong, M.D.
Medical Website Optimization

I Bought a New Car

Meet patients online needs.I bought a new car last week.  This is not a post about buying a car, but there are some strong messages about online relationships.

I chose a 2013 Honda Crosstour, the dealer, and my salesperson before ever walking into a sales room.  I did it all online.

The Right Time to Buy

I haven’t had a brand new car since 1990.  My last 3 were previously owned.  I simply drove too much to justify the rapid depreciation costs of a new vehicle.

While two kids are already driving, we will have 3 more who will be of driving age in the next 18 months.  The car I just traded in wasn’t safe enough to keep around for any of them.

So, for a myriad of reasons it was time to buy.  As it was Christmas break, I didn’t want to waste precious vacation time.

Online Window Shopping

Through several auto sites (USAA, Edmunds, Autotrader) I expressed interest in the particular make and model; Crosstour V6, 2013.  In doing so, interested dealers in zip code made contact via email.

Within 24 hours I had received emails from 6 area dealerships.  I read the reviews of the dealerships.  I easily chose two finalists.

The others were disqualified for;

  • Deception:  gave me a quote for a 2012, not 2013.  No 2013′s even in stock.
  • No Quote:  wanted me to visit dealership first before giving me a quote
  • No Response: waited too long to email me or return emails
  • Poor After Market Service

“I Will Beat Any Deal You Receive”

The two “finalists” were quick to communicate and straightforward with answering my questions through emails, gave me a quote and showed some personal interest in meeting me.  They engaged me by accommodating my needs.

In his opening email, my eventual salesperson, “Ama,” even stated he’d” beat any offer” and gave a most competitive quote.  To me, this meant he was serious in wanting to meet me.

For the purpose of comparing, I visited both dealerships.  The first dealership just couldn’t beat the quote I received from Ama.  I drove across town and bought the car from Ama.

What Can You Learn?

Buying a car is a huge purchase.

It seems only too natural to start your search for a dealer and salesman online.  Price is a huge factor, but so is the personality of the sales team.  Are they willing to negotiate, or are they jerks?  Can I start a relationship with a specific person before entering the show room?

For me, there was great satisfaction in already knowing who I’d be dealing with upon my arrival, knowing he’d was anticipating my visit and that we’d already begun the negotiation.  I was also very happy that I was choosing a dealership endorsed by others.

Satisfied, I made the purchase.  I had found a dealership who takes online shopping seriously.  I met a salesman who understands that the online customer is likely to be very savvy about the purchase, but also, very serious about buying a car.

They met my needs.

Just as the dealership met my needs.  We, as doctors and health providers, need to meet our patients needs.  Most of America search first for questions about health providers online.  We need to provide information on our sites about our practice philosophy and who we are as people.

Just as I expect this about a car purchase, our patients, with their health on the “line,” expect to find us on the Internet, too.  Create websites with great content, educate and become transparent.

The car sales industry is changing, but really it’s the consumer, i.e. our patients.  I turned to the Internet for my car.  Doesn’t it make sense more would turn to the Internet for more important issues such as health?

Take them seriously, meet their needs and you’ll be greeting them in person when they walk through your office door.

Search Engines Rank Webpages Not Websites

Search engines rank webpages not websites.Search engines rank webpages, not websites.

Think of a reference manual;  dictionaries, encyclopedias, thesauraus.  The title of the book refers to a collection of pages bound together.  Unlike a novel, reading each page in order serves no purpose.

A website is composed of webpages.  A collection of webpages constitutes a website and as in our manual example, each webpage of a website contains useful information.

Search engines, such as Google, rank individual pages of each site and not the whole site collectively.

Overall, with good SEO, most of your pages will rank well.

The URL or Domain

Think of a website as a place (i.e. your Domain) where webpages of a common theme reside.  In this way, you may better understand how a “website” may rank for dozens of keywords.  In actuality, a successful website contains many pages allowing for the excellent SERP rankings.

When establishing a PageRank, an overall score is assigned to your domain, or website.  A PageRank is different than index rankings on a SERP.  It gives you an overall score of the relevance of a website.


Each article you write for publish for your site will have a separate and unique URL. The root URL remains the same, but the extension, or filename, is unique to everypage of the site.  For instance;

This points to the home page and is the “root” URL.

This URL is the address of my “About” page.  It is indexed separately from the home page and all other pages on this site.  This extension signifies that it is completely separate file, or page, on my site.

Each of these pages is read and indexed separately by Google.  One page may rank better for “medical search engine optimization” and the other for “randall wong md.”

This website has almost 300 pages “indexed” with the search engines.  In theory, this means this site could rank for at least 300 different keywords or subjects!

Do you have 300 areas of your practice for which you’d like to rank Number 1?

What Can You Do?

This emphasizes the importance of relevance.  Each and every article should be relevant to one subject, or keyword.  The more specific your article, or post, is to one keyword, the more relevant.  Try to write an article “concentrating” on too many keywords and you lose specificity, i.e. relevance.

To your success!


Randall V. Wong, M.D.
Medical Website Optimization

Changing Practices: Can Your Old Patients Find You?

Changing Practices. Rebuilding Your Webpresence.Changing medical practices?  How will your existing patients find you?

This is a common problem.  How do you quickly establish a web presence to convey your new practice information, location and contact information?

Here are 4 easy steps to quickly get you found on the Internet.

Buy Your Name as URL

Get indexed by Google, Bing and Yahoo by creating a webpage using your name as the URL.  Using a 3rd party domain registrar, such as or, purchase your name.  If your name is taken, try some variations, such as;


On your new site, create just 3 pages:  Home, About and Contact.  Make sure your name and address appear in the footer and in the title tag of the webpage.  Follow these steps to register and index your new site with Google, Yahoo and Bing.

Start a FaceBook and Google Plus Page

These two giants are going to war over local search.  Take advantage of the competition and start a page on each platform.  It’s free and both are natural places where your patients (or their children) will look for you.

Nothing fancy at this time.  Just get your contact information listed properly on each page.  You can be visible within just a few days!

Local Directories

“Google” yourself and find which local directories have your name listed.  Claim those sites and update with your new contact information.

Take advantage of the inherent SEO power of some of these sites.  For instance, usually is listed fairly high on the SERP.  Find and update the information pertaining to your listing.

Do the same for other directory listings you find when you “Google” yourself.

Two other major platforms are Yelp and Angie’s list.  While these are great “review” sites, these are also popular arenas for your patients to search for you.

Update Societies and Associations

Update your contact information with your medical school, residency programs, state and local societies, board associations, etc.  Many of the local directories use these membership lists as sources for their databases.


While Adwords may indeed seem appealing, we’ve been voting against these 4 line ad campaigns.  They are too ubiquitous and are often ignored (spam?).

We would suggest using them only after you’ve taken care of your organic search engines, local directories including Yelp and Angie’s list.

What Can You Expect?

Your goal is to update your contact information that is spread across the Internet and ASAP.  By starting a webpage with your own URL, you will soon be indexed by Google, Bing and Yahoo.  This may take a few weeks.

Use the ubiquity and SEO power of many of the review sites to allow your patients to find you.  Google Plus, Facebook, Yelp and Angie’s list are all quick ways to get the word out.

After a few weeks, your organic search should then round out the picture!

Randall V. Wong, M.D.
Medical Website Optimization

Top 10 Tips to Starting Your SEO

Best Top Ten Tips for Starting SEO, Search Engine Optimization for DoctorsHere is my Top Ten List to optimize your SEO (search engine optimization) for your website.  Whether or not you’ve built the site yourself, regardless of the type of website, your marketing goals or even your type of medical practice, these are the basic steps to getting your website optimized, indexed and working well.

Start a GMail Account

There are several Google tools available (and for free!).  All you need to do is create a GMail Account.  With a Google account,  you can then set up;

  • Google Analytics
  • Webmasters Tools
  • Feedburner
  • Adwords
  • Adsense


Every website should have an analytics tool setup.  Analytics will give you vital information about the popularity of your blog, how many visitors and what they read.  Search engines, such as Google, actually expect you to have analytics installed on your site.  In fact, not having analytics installed has a negative impact on your Pagerank and SEO.

Sign in to Google Analytics with your GMail userid and password.

Webmasters Tools

Webmasters Tools tests your site for “dead” links and other internal errors which may decrease your SEO.  Making sure your have proper 301 redirects and 404 errors handled properly are also important factors of your SEO.

It is here that you will register your website with Google and/or by submitting a sitemap of your site.

Claim FaceBook and Google Plus Pages

Though you know I don’t recommend engaging in social media until you’ve set-up a website, I am changing my recommendation for Facebook and Google Plus (now integrated with Google Places).

In both instances, FaceBook and Google have already created pages for local businesses.  Hence, you have a “page” waiting to be claimed.  Both will be influential in the local search market and you want to make sure the information available to the public is accurate.  At the very least, make sure the phone number and address on these pre-fabbed pages is correct.

An unclaimed page may contain erroneous information about your business and also sends a message to your potential patients that you just don’t care to engage.

Add Title to WebSite

A common SEO “mistake” is a missing Title Tag.  The title tag appears in the tab of your browser and is as important for your search engine optimization as your content and inbound links.  Take some time to create your title.

Your site can contain your name, but more importantly, we suggest adding your location and type of medical specialty.  For instance, Randall Wong, M.D., Retina Specialist of Northern Virginia.  Use keywords commonly used by your patients.


The sitemap is used by the search engines as a “Table of Contents” of all the pages comprising your site.  It is an easy way for the search engines to ensure that all pages have been crawled and then indexed.

Having and submitting a sitemap signifies to the search engines that you are a legitimate website owner.  The search engines regard the sitemap as an efficient way to index all the pages in your site and is an expected component of any “legitimate” website.

I use Google XML Sitemaps on all my sites.

Submit your site to the Open Directory.  Websites on the Open Directory are less likely to be black hat or poor quality sites.


This is another file that is a “must have” from an SEO standpoint.  This file contains those files or pages that should NOT be indexed or crawled by the bots.  Examples could be emergency or contact information, disclaimers, privacy policy statements, etc.

From an SEO standpoint, Google, Bing and Yahoo give a higher value to those sites that contain robots.txt….another expected component of a good website.

Length of Domain Registration

Purchase your URL for at least 2 years, but 5-7 years is better.  This increases the “trustworthiness” of your site and improves Pagerank and your SEO.  The search engines rank older, more trusted sites, too (i.e. the age of your URL is important).

If you’ve purchased the URL for only a year, you might consider renewing now, but for multiple years.

Mobile Friendly

Choose either a mobile friendly (aka mobile responsive) theme if you have yet to build a site or change your present site to become mobile responsive.  We recommend themes by Studiopress as inexpensive, SEO maximized and now mobile friendly.

These are my top ten!  I invite you to share your suggestions!


To Your Growth And Success!


Randall V. Wong, M.D.
Medical Website Optimization



How to Create Value on Your Medical Website

Creating Value for Your Medical Website

Every website must provide value.  A medical website easily creates value by providing answers their patients health related questions.  We do it every day.

To effectively market your medical practice on the Internet, your website should provide trusted, optimized medical information so it can rank high on search engine result pages (SERPS).

It all starts with providing value… and at no cost. You can’t generate traffic to your website if your website does not provide value to your visitors.

Click through ads (e.g. Adwords), social media platforms, and email blasts draw attention; however, it’s pointless to employ these tactics if your website can’t keep the attention of your visitors.

Why not try creating real value by providing credible information instead of buying them? I have found my time is much better spent creating value through content, rather than devising the next best click through ad.

Value is the key to driving traffic to your website. With time, value creates trust. For a medical practice, this is key to converting website visitors into paying patients. By building trust you are also increasing the value of your medical practice.

How do You Create Value

Our patients are desperate for information. They have lots of questions and want answers. The digital age has broadened their ability to access information, but what information is credible and relevant?

As health experts, we have the ability to create value by providing credible, relevant answers to the questions patients are asking. Rather than relying on advice from less credible sources on the Internet it is imperative that we provide information so patients can make informed decisions.

There is an easy way to do this. Everyday we use the same rehearsed speeches over and over again to educate our patients. A great way to create content is to write these canned speeches/answers down.

Taken one step further, you can also incorporate a Q & A section within your article. To do this, simply include the questions your patients typically ask and provide the answers.

For me, this content method has proved to be a great source of “value” not only for my practice, but also for my patients, prospective patients and their families. Writing down “answers” to my most frequently asked questions (e.g. How do you put the eye back in after surgery?) has been a huge resource for my “content” and provides tremendous value to my site.

If you regularly post to your website, your traffic will increase because search engines will increase your relative position on their search engine results page.

That is, you are providing timely, relevant, credible content that is aligned with the corresponding searches. This the crux of search engine optimization (SEO) and content marketing.

3 Tips to Create Great Content:

•write about what you know;
•don’t give advice; and
•don’t make a diagnosis


If you do this everybody wins.

Give Away Your Knowledge, Not Your Expertise

Critics are concerned that we are discounting our profession and ourselves by “giving away” what we know. We aren’t.

Our ability to combine our knowledge and experience to make a diagnosis and to recommend a treatment plan is the value we provide to our patients.

There is an inherent difference between educating and treating. By no means would I advocate treating or diagnosing on the Internet. By providing content we increase our value not only to our patients, but also to society.

Creating valuable content raises awareness of your medical practice, increases your profile, and provides valuable information to those are searching. Start writing today and see the difference it can make for your practice and, more importantly, your patients.

How do you generate content for your medical website? Please share your ideas in the comment section below.

BTW – We never remove the eye because we don’t know how to put it back!


To Your Growth And Success!


Randall V. Wong, M.D.
Medical Website Optimization


The Value of a Comment

The WordPress comment is as important as your great content.  After each of your articles, you should engage your patients to leave a comment.  A comment is more than a suggestion box.

The most valuable part of a website is the “comment.”  The “comment” is the key to a blog’s success to engage a potential patient.  Your goal is to create content that may generate comments.

Content is Still King

If you read enough about social media and content marketing, there is a lot of emphasis on the importance of great content.  In fact, content marketing (and therefore SEO) are indeed the only way to achieve and maintain high search rankings.

The rankings get you marketing exposure.  The comments (and your responses) engage the patient.

In other words, your articles get your readers’ attention.  It’s the comments that allow them to interact.

Value of the Comment

In addition to feedback, the value of a comment is to allow your readers to find each other.  Readers can find others with the same problem.  This ability to identify with others is crucial to developing a relationship between you and your next potential patient because this gives your reader an idea of how YOU will respond to THEM face to face.

Your articles certainly must contain relevant and fresh material, but in addition, should be compelling enough to move the reader to leave a comment (or ask a question).

Value of Responding

Your response is crucial.  Your response does more than answer an isolated question.  Your response creates a dialogue to be witnessed by subsequent readers.

The dialogue provides a way for the reader to learn about you, the physician.  This is where you display your “bedside manner” showing bits and pieces of who you are as a person, your practice philosophy, etc.

What Can You Do?

  1. Continue to write great articles.  Remember the rules to great SEO.  Keeping your content fresh and relevant is your biggest priority.  This will get you high rankings on the search listings pages (SERP).
  2. Write to generate “the comment.”  If you are writing about a particular health topic, stick to one aspect and avoid trying to write an exhaustive review.  Hit the high points…the reader may ask about a more subtle issue!
  3. Ask the reader to leave a comment at the end of the article.
  4. If you are giving your opinion, avoid trying to please everyone.  Take one side of an argument…and let your readers take the other side when they comment.
  5. And no matter what….answer each and every comment your articles generate.
  6. Be transparent.

By allowing comments to be posted on your site, you are demonstrating a willingness to engage your patients and are creating visual evidence of who you are as a person.

Social media, blogs, Internet 2.0 are all about relationships.  It’s no different between patient and doctor.

Care to make a comment?

To Your Growth And Success!


Randall V. Wong, M.D.
Medical Website Optimization


The 3 Rs of Great SEO

SEO Tips for Medical Office.  Medical Marketing Enterprises. LLCFollow these 3 basic rules to SEO (search engine optimization) to get your webpages to rank highly.

My “3 R’s” to great SEO:

  1. Relevant:  Your content must be relevant
  2. Refreshed:  Your site should be continuously refreshed with new “fresh” articles
  3. Regular:  You should publish at a regular rate

SEO (search engine optimization) is the process by which your great content, the articles written on your website, become indexed and then ranked by the search engines.

Relevant Content

Your content must be relevant to the reader.  Your future patients are surfing looking for an answer to a specific problem.  Your articles should be providing the answers, hence, your articles must be relevant.  Write articles on topics interesting to your readers.

Choosing a subject neither too broad nor too narrow can be tricky.  I started out writing articles on the most commonly asked questions I’d get in the office.

You’ve rehearsed this subject thousands of times (because you’ve told the same story patient after patient) and know it by heart.  Simply writing it down will be easy.

NOTE:  These types of articles are naturally interesting and informative.  I now refer patients to my website for “further explanation.”

Good SEO:  Use keywords in your article that will match the keywords used in the Google search.

Refreshed Website

Ever visit a stale website?  Will you ever go back?

Google ranks pages with fresh content higher than pages with stale content.  Google wants to provide the reader with the most relevant content and from a site with fresh, new content….just as you’d like.

NOTE:  I have a few tips on writing great blog posts.   For instance, write 1 topic per article.  Don’t feel compelled to write exhaustive reviews every time .  In this way, you’ll be less likely to suffer writer’s block and your articles will be more targeted.

Good SEO:   The search engine bots visit refreshed sites more often than those sites with older content.  If the bots find and index new content every visit…they’ll return that much sooner!

Regular Publications

It is better to publish your articles at a regular rate than all at once.

NOTE:  I personally try and publish the same day of the week, for the sake of my readership.  It’s easier for your readers to know your pattern…if you have one.

Good SEO:  Let’s say you have 10 articles.  From an SEO standpoint, it’s smarter to publish the articles once a week for 10 weeks, than all at once.

To Your Growth And Success!


Randall V. Wong, M.D.
Medical Website Optimization


Choosing the Type of Website: Good, Better and Best

Regardless of your business, there are only 3 “types” of websites; a resource site, a marketing site or an interactive site.  No matter what functions you choose, all should be created on a blog.

“Blog software” (aka content management systems such as can provide all these functions and can be integrated at anytime.  You don’t have to redesign your site!

Integrate different functions when you are ready!

Website as a Resource Site

This is the most basic form of a website for a medical practice.  It contains information for existing patients who already know your practice.  It will contain static information such as hours of operation, “About Us,” Insurance participation, maps and contact information.  Usually these sites are static and are rarely changed.

Resource sites have no marketing value and will NOT be listed very high on SERP pages on a search.

While a resource site is basic.  It can be an easy first step to getting a website started and also shows you are interested in starting and maintaining a web presence.

Well done.

Website Becomes Marketing Tool

To use your website as a marketing tool, you must understand the concepts of content marketing, SEO and SERP.

Content marketing is the only approach for a medical practice to achieve and maintain high Google rankings.  By adding new, relevant content to your website on a regular basis (the 3 R’s), your webpages will soon be ranking well on the SERP’s!

Search Engine Optimization practices ensure the search engines will know how to rank, and elevate, your webpages.

Your goal is to get your webpage listed in the “top 10″ results of the SERP.  These high rankings will increase traffic to your sites.

Your website is now successfully marketing your medical practice yet still serves as a resource to known patients, however, now you are attracting new visitors to your site.

Interactive Websites are the Best

The best type of site offers information as a resource, markets the practice well and engages the readers…to become new patients.

By ranking highly on the results page (SERP), you are now attracting new patients to your website.

By allowing your readers to comment on your blog posts, new visitors can find patients asking questions with similar problems.  New patients can find others with whom they can relate.

By answering each and every legitimate comment, you will display transparency, share your knowledge and give insight to your personality and the way you practice.

Nothing is more engaging for a new patient than to witness a conversation between a patient (with similar questions) and a doctor.  Nothing.  To find a person with similar issues is engaging.  To find a doctor to respond transparently is a “slam-dunk.”

This is how I’ve grown my practice over the past few years.  The ability for a new patient to witness a conversation on your site is the most powerful influence to becoming a new patient.

To Your Growth And Success!


Randall V. Wong, M.D.
Medical Website Optimization