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In this Post: Setting up your massage website for optimal SEO is an intimidating topic, one that many massage therapists may outsource. But, having a basic understanding of how it works and what it takes to improve your ranking will certainly increase your bottom line.
I blame SEO for everything that has happened to me over the last three years! Researching SEO sent me down a rabbit hole that led me to start this blog and then a podcast, and now I’m in the process of developing a course. And it all started as an innocent search to learn more about how to help my brick and mortar massage business gain more client.
What is SEO?
SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is the term used for the process of driving more traffic from a search engine to a website or web page. And let me tell you, it is a DEEP well!
Having good SEO is what gets you ahead of your competitors. It’s what helps you show up on page one of a google search for massage in your area.
So how, without going down that same rabbit hole I did and ending up miles from where you started three years later, can we break down SEO in an easily digestible way?
10 Steps For Setting Up Your Massage Website for Optimal SEO
Before we jump too far into the how I want to mention a little something about SEO, getting good SEO results doesn’t happen overnight. It isn’t something you do once and done. Nope, it’s a long haul game.
So, if you don’t start seeing results overnight, just remember to keep putting one foot in front of the other. If you commit to taking consistent action, you can and WILL improve your SEO ranking.
1) Start a Blog
When I first began learning SEO, back in 2011, the number one tip I received was to start a blog.
I remember sitting in a networking meeting chatting with the group’s tech guru as he suggested starting a blog. I was so clueless and NOT techy at that point that I instantly thought, “Ya, I’m not going to do that!”
Yet somehow, later that week, that was exactly what I was doing. I had NO IDEA what I was doing, but I followed his advice to write ANYTHING. He claimed that it really didn’t matter too much what I was writing about as long as I was writing consistently.
I’m not sure that was the BEST advice, but that IS how I began. I’d write short paragraphs about health and wellness, different massage modalities I was offering, and various events happening in my town.
For years I had this “blog” on my brick and mortar website. It was crude!!! But it did do the job of helping with SEO!
Since learning more about what blogging actually is, I cringe at my early attempts. But again, these quick paragraphs that hit keywords like massage, my town’s name, and wellness helped me rank higher than many of my competitors!
As people have become more technologically advanced, these exact same steps might not warrant the same results I got back in 2011, but the concept is still the same. Having a blog on your massage website will help you optimize for SEO purposes.
When it comes to blog posts, you want to make sure that your posts are at least 300 words long. This is the bare minimum.
When creating, keyword-dense posts is the name of the game. Think about what your ideal client might search for when they are looking for the best massage therapist to relieve their aches and pains.
For me, I see a lot of skiers. So I have written a lot of posts about how to use massage for recovery after skiing. You might specialize in prenatal massage, so writing posts about the benefits of massage during pregnancy would benefit you.
If a blog seems intimidating, there are other ways to enhance for SEO.
2) Set Up The Plug-In Yoast
If you have a WordPress website, there is a free plugin YOAST, which ranks how well your pages and posts are positioning for optimal optimization.
So whether it is a blog post, a list of services page, or your policy and procedure page, Yoast can help you better understand if you are hitting the key matrix necessary to better rank.
Yoast works in the background of your website to grade how well you are performing for google. It tells you when you have failed to use your keyword(s) enough when you have consecutive sentences that start with the same word when your word count is too low. All things that are going to hurt your SEO performance. It is an amazing tool that is super easy to navigate once you have it set up.
As I plug away at publishing this very post, I am relying HEAVILY on Yoast to help me rank!
3) Update Pages
You can have a news page that includes all upcoming events you are hosting, new modalities you are learning, community projects with which you are involved, and anything else news-worthy.
You can embed videos, which not only helps your SEO; it also allows potential clients to gain a level of trust before ever having met you. If you choose to go this route, I would highly suggest starting a YouTube channel and having the videos live here instead of on your website, where they would slow down your site speed, which again affects your SEO.
5) Include Testimonials and Reviews
Including testimonials and reviews is another option that has a dual purpose. Helping with SEO and selling your services to new clients.
Don’t have any testimonials or reviews, don’t be afraid to ask for them! Your clients want to see you succeed and probably would be more than happy to provide you a review if you simply asked. Don’t be shy!
6) Include a Bio
Include a bio about how and why you got into massage, all of your credentials, and what you enjoy doing in your spare time.
7) Include Keywords with Images
Also, Make sure ALL images on your site are heavily keyworded in your alt text. The purpose of allowing text when you upload a picture is actually for the visually impaired. So, you don’t want to keyword your images to where they don’t reflect what is actually on the image, this is frowned upon, but you CAN still organically sprinkle in some keywords to help your ranking.
8) Get Backlinks to Your Site
Another thing that you can do is get backlinks to your site. This is when another website, preferably one with more authority than your own, links back to your site.
I’ve been involved with several networking groups with websites that link back to all the individual businesses. If you are a part of a networking group and don’t have a site set up like this, maybe it is time to talk to the group’s organizers to set something like this up. It helps everyone involved with the group.
Another place I get backlinks from is through NCBTMB. I’ve also been featured in local news articles that linked back to my site. Brainstorm places that might be willing to link back to you if you asked.
An important thing to note about backlinks is that they don’t go both ways. If I link my website to a friend’s and she links back to me, it negates the desired outcome. IT WILL NOT HELP YOUR SEO!
9) Schedule Updates
Search engines like when you update for websites content on a schedule. It is better to update your content once a month than four times in one week and then once four months later and then again two weeks later…
10) Take an SEO Course
Just to be clear, I am not an expert on setting up your massage website for optimal SEO. I have learned a lot along the way, but there are folks out there who know A LOT more than me!
There are courses dedicated to teaching you how to fully understand and improve your ranking. My favorite, Stupid Simple SEO, takes a comprehensive dive into all things SEO. So, if you want to go deep, I’d suggest checking out this program!
A website is not something to create once and then leave alone. It’s a living breathing organism, at least it should be if you want to be Search Engine Optimized. Setting up your massage website for optimal SEO doesn’t have to be as hard as it sounds! Commit to taking consistent action on a scheduled basis, and your site will begin to move to page one.
- Boulder College of Massage Therapy Graduate
- Nationally Certified through NCBTMB
- Colorado Licensed Massage Therapist
- Certified CranialSacral Level 1 through Upledger
- Certified Herbal Therapist through Nutrition Therapy Institute
- Certified Fujian Massage through Barefoot Masters
- Fort Lewis College - Majored in Art, Minored in Business Administration
- 6 Year Winner of Best Massage Therapist for "Best of The Boat" Competition
- Massage Business Owner Since 2008