Gain More Residents Through SEO Tactics for Senior Living Communities

John SammonAuthor:John Sammon
Updated on 1/30/2024

Attracting more residents to your assisted living, retirement, or memory care community can be challenging. And while seniors likely have various living options to choose from, it’s your job to ensure you do all you can to have your facility stand out as the ideal choice.

We provide senior living organizations with our search engine optimization (SEO) marketing services and we can help make your community’s website the one they come to. However, it’s always good to know and assess how much of an opportunity there is for it to help you.

Below we’ll share some thoughts and insights on SEO and marketing to help you with your initial research.

We Can Do Your SEO for You

Online Marketing Campaign Considerations for Senior Living Facilities

How SEO Fits Into the Puzzle [For Beginners or Those Who Aren’t Doing SEO]

Senior Living SEOMarketing your senior living facility can be challenging.

Here are some typical questions and challenges that both digital and traditional marketers face when planning to market to their nearby community (and beyond):

Tip #1 – Consider your targeted geographic area for your campaign
Most senior housing organizations are focused on the immediate area around their facility. Often, communities market to people within a 5-15 mile radius. However, one other regional focus to consider is seniors residing in other areas that may be drawn back to the area for family (if you are not necessarily in a warm weather state like Arizona or Florida). A great place to start for researching this is Google Analytics (Audiences- Geo – Location) or even Google Trends.

Google Analytics Regional Snapshot

Tip #2 – Who should be your target audience?
The primary audience to target is potential residents. However, there are other audiences to consider. This could also be spouses, family members or even general caretakers. This is something to review and research as the messaging and other parameters of your campaign can be incredibly impacted by what you decide.

Tip #3 – What Type of Senior Marketing is Most Effective (Spoiler Alert – It’s SEO)?
We’re certainly biased in this case. However, we’ve learned through experience working with many senior living communities in over a dozen markets. From our work, the overwhelming channel that delivers the most qualified leads is SEO.

Tip #4 – Testing and Measuring Will Lead you to SEO

Our recommendation here is fueled by measurement. At the end of the day, SEO is one of the few marketing channels where you can truly verify and see how people who contacted you (chat, phone or form) found your website.

What is SEO for Senior Living Communities?
SEO for senior living communities is a type of marketing that focuses on gaining new visitors to your website by advancing your presence on popular search engines.

This is done through a variety of activities related to both on-site and off-site factors that combine to demonstrate to the search engines that your website is an authority on a series of topics and keywords (such as “senior living facilities” and “independent living communities”). A successful SEO campaign will frequently drive potential residents into your sales pipeline.

Getting Started in Improving Your Ranking for SEO

What’s the first step in getting started in SEO? You typically want to start with uncovering what keywords your audience is searching for in your area. There are a few tools that can help you with that. We would advise you to check out Google Trends or even sign up for a wonderful keyword research and keyword tracking program called SE Ranking.

To help here are some keyword phrases to adopt for your overall marketing campaign if you are targeting people looking for independent living:

  • Senior living in [your city]
  • Senior apartments in [your city]
  • 55+ communities in [your city]
  • Retirement communities in [your city]
  • CCRC [state or city]
  • Continuing Care Retirement Community [state or city]

You can try variants of those too. You’ll want to make sure you assess where your site currently ranks for those terms to test and measure how effective the changes that you make to your website (both on and off site).

First Steps Toward Improving Your Ranking

Now that you have your keyword list and you’re ready to make changes, here are the places to focus on:

1. Your Google Business Profile and Bing Local Profiles

If you haven’t claimed your profiles on Google and Bing, do that before anything else. The next step is to add as much as you can to the profile. Make it complete as you can. It’s a good idea to take a look at your competitors in search to see to what extent that they’ve filled it out too. It may give you some good ideas for what categories to pick and what content to add.

2. Add content to the page that you are driving people to from your Google and Bing profiles.

Try to include content that will not only help people understand the differentiation points of your business but also provides info on how to contact you and find your location. Embedding a Google map of your location and adding an address to the page is essential (even if it’s at the bottom of the page).

3. Come up with an organizational plan to generate reviews for your business on an ongoing basis.

Reviews are so critical to get. If you are already asking and getting them from customers, make sure that people are leaving them on Google as opposed to other channels like Facebook or Yelp. Consider getting a QR code applied to your business cards and asking customers to scan the code (which would take them right to the place where they can leave a review for you).

How We’ve Helped Retirement and Assisted Living Communities Through SEO

While we have worked with a variety of industries over the years, we have gained considerable experience helping senior living facilities like yours in our time working with National Church Residences.

For example, we helped Water’s Edge of Lake Wales, located in Florida, through senior living SEO tactics such as implementing Google Analytics goal tracking, creating strong calls to action (CTAs), optimizing page copy, writing blog posts, and more. Through these efforts, we were able to:

  • Increase overall traffic by 138%
  • Increase organic traffic by 96%
  • Increase conversions (form submissions) by 295%

We also worked with a variety of their other communities that offered memory care and assisted living services, which helped us to become experienced at marketing these services both together and separately.

“Sixth City Marketing provided National Church Residences with a full range of services including website design/administration/management, digital marketing, search engine optimization, analytics/metrics/reporting, and much more. Their excellent customer service, speedy turnaround times, and expert advice makes them a valued extension of our in-house team!”
– National Church Residences

SEO Services We Offer for Senior Living Facilities

In order to get your website where it needs to be in search engines, we can implement the following senior living SEO strategies:

Content Writing

Do you have key pages on your website that target all the services you offer? What about pages that specify the cities and locations you want to attract? These are some starter questions that we use when beginning a content strategy for senior communities. We can optimize your content and add to it by focusing on the keywords you want to rank for and supplement it with blog posts that can further attract seniors to your website.

Conversion Optimization and Design

The way your website is laid out can be a huge factor in getting more leads. And while getting people to your website is certainly key, having them contact you is a whole different ballgame. Our background in design gives us the insight needed to determine what strategic adjustments should be made to your website, whether it involves moving forms, adding calls to action, or anything else.

Technical Adjustments

There are various actions that can be performed behind the scenes of your website that can help make your website more appealing to Google and users alike. From adding schema to using metadata titles and descriptions to improving site speed, a variety of possibilities exist to enhance your online presence.

Goal Tracking Measurement

As we mentioned in our case study, implementing conversion tracking is a key part of SEO to help monitor the success of your campaign. We have the ability to set up Google Analytics, install it on your website, make adjustments to web forms, and put goal tracking in place in your account.

Photo Optimization

A major part of attracting residents to your community is showcasing what your campus and facilities look like. From apartments to common rooms to green areas and more, having various photos on your website is key – but these pics could be missing key metadata that helps search engines “read” them better. Not to mention, the size of your photos also matters in terms of slowing down your website, which can impact your search engine rankings.

Backlink Building

One part of our strategy for senior living communities that we have seen great results from is link building, which is the process of getting other websites to link to your website. This can be through directories, guest posts, and other local businesses you connect with. Having more backlinks can build your trust with Google and help increase your rankings.

Brand Awareness

We will use the content we write for your site as a way to gain backlinks from local businesses and other relevant sources to help build up your local authority and get you more known both in your desired area and nationally. We also have tools that help us find unlinked mentions of your brand to ensure you get proper acknowledgement.

Local SEO

To help your facility rank higher on Google Maps and to rank for key terms like “senior living near me,” we also can perform local search engine optimization tactics like managing your local listings, local link building, keyword research, and more to enhance your online presence in the cities that your communities are in.

Types of Facilities We Can Help

  • Assisted living communities
  • Retirement communities
  • Independent living communities
  • Continuous care retirement communities
  • Memory care facilities
  • Skilled nursing care facilities
  • Hospice care facilities
  • Rehabilitation facilities
  • At-home senior care providers
  • Respite care services
  • Senior placement services
  • Many more

Our Process Developing Our SEO Strategies

Our process for creating customized SEO for senior care is customized to your business based on the goals we work together to create. Discover how we work with clients to help them reach their SEO marketing goals.

  • Researching – We will take a thorough look at your website, current keyword positions, and competitors to identify any issues or roadblocks that need to be resolved.
  • Strategizing – Our strategists craft a custom plan based on our analysis that will yield positive results based on your marketing goals.
  • Implementing – Once you approve of the strategy, our team of writers, developers, and marketing experts will get to work, executing the work within the strategy, including content writing and interlinking.
  • Reporting – At the end of the month, our team will send a report of the progress with details of the campaign, conversions, and other metrics related to our efforts.
  • Meeting – Our team schedules monthly meetings with you so that we can discuss our findings and make sure that the campaign is achieving your specific goals for senior living SEO.
  • Adjusting – Being able to see the results of our efforts allows us to pivot strategically based on not only the data but also your feedback on the leads we obtain for you.
  • Repeating – Our team will continue the cycle of writing a strategy each quarter, working through this strategy, and reporting on the progress once a month, maintaining correspondence with you on any questions or comments you may have.

Reasons You Need SEO for Your Assisted or Independent Living Community

In our current day and age, people of all ages are using the internet to research, buy, and talk about all the things in their lives.

From ensuring that your website gets found when users search for things such as “assisted living near me” or “55+ communities Florida” to even making sure your social media is up to date so current residents can stay in the know, SEO is a vital marketing practice that gives your community or service an edge over your competitors.

Investing in search engine optimization for your senior care facility can be the make or break way to getting new business as companies continue to move away from traditional, fading tactics.

Why Choose Sixth City Marketing for SEO Marketing?

We understand that choosing a dedicated SEO agency from your options can be a difficult decision. It is our goal to make the process easier by helping you get to know our company better and what makes us different:

  • Industry experience – From our time working with memory care, assisted living, and retirement communities, you can trust that we know how to cater to your ideal audience.
  • Reliable team – Our expert staff is all in-house, which means we collectively work together on strategies, content, and ideas to provide you with quality services.
  • Transparency – We strive to build a relationship with you founded on trust, so you can rely on us to show you real data and be open with you on the progress of your campaign.
  • Range of Services – Not only can we provide SEO for your senior living community, but also paid advertising, web design, email marketing, social media, and more.
  • Results driven – Our #1 priority while working with you is to help bring in solid leads that turn into residents. Everything we do is all in order to help fill your sales pipeline so your community can grow.
  • Convenient Locations – While we have offices in Cleveland, Columbus, Indianapolis, Chicago, and Pittsburgh, we can serve your business no matter where you are located.

Other Ways We Can Help Outside of SEO

Not only is SEO for senior living important, but a complete marketing campaign will help you to be even more successful. At Sixth City Marketing, some of the other digital marketing services we offer include:

  • Pay-per-click marketing – Our team can create effective paid search campaigns through platforms such as Google Ads, Bing Ads, Facebook Ads, or Instagram.
  • Website design and development – We know a well-designed site is the foundation of your company’s online presence. Every website design project that we take on strongly focuses on producing leads through our strategic development tactics.
  • Email marketing – The process of sending email marketing for businesses consists of our team writing, designing, scheduling, and monitoring your campaigns with the goal of customer retention, creation, and more.
  • Auditing and consulting – We have to ability to help your business as part of a consulting agreement determining the best strategies for your industry and company. From a website audit to keyword analysis and more, our marketing consulting can help give your team the direction it needs.

Make a Well-Informed Decision on Outsourcing Your SEO

To help you make a well-informed decision about partnering with an SEO firm, we collected some important questions and answers so that you know what to expect from our team. 

How long will it take to see results?

The timeline for seeing results can vary based on location, competition, your overall website, algorithm updates, and more. Generally, you can expect to see significant results after a few months. However, some tactics will see quicker success than others. After that, you should expect to see consistent progress.

Is content important for ranking?

In general, high-quality content on your website helps families and loved ones make difficult decisions regarding potential residents. Beyond this, it can also help improve your rankings and build the credibility of your website. Luckily, we have a talented team of in-house writers and editors who know the ins and outs of local SEO and content. 

Should we invest in PPC too? 

While SEO is going to contribute to organic growth, it usually takes a little longer to work. Typically, what works for SEO also works for PPC, which means you can have the two going simultaneously. Therefore, supplementing your organic efforts with paid advertising like Google Ads can help you achieve visibility in search results quickly.

This is especially useful if you are running any sort of deal or have any priority services that you want to prioritize.  After all, PPC is one of the fastest and most effective ways to boost your business online.

Is SEO a one-time investment?

SEO of all kinds is an ongoing effort. Algorithms change, competition evolves, and other external factors can impact rankings. Luckily, our team has strategies to stay ahead of algorithm updates and the competition to help your rankings stay steady.

What are some common SEO mistakes you see?

The strategies for maintaining SEO are very similar to those of other industries. That means they have similar pitfalls, too. Things to avoid that can cause your rankings to fall include neglecting local SEO efforts, failing to optimize for mobile users, ignoring the user experience, and forgetting to regularly update and refresh content.

Additional SEO Questions We Receive

During our free strategy session, we often receive a handful of questions as potential clients vet our services and try to understand more about our business and our services. Here are some things we have answered that may help you in this process:

  1. How do you show results?
    In our monthly reports, we break down various data metrics that show our success. However, our main forms of results are from leads which come by way of contact form submissions and phone calls. But we also see changes in keyword positions, acquired backlinks, and other tactics we do as great strides and success in your campaign.
  2. Can you show ROI data?
    Yes! We have a unique process that allows us to see lead source tracking on your web forms so the leads you acquire that convert can be traced back to our SEO efforts.
  3. Is SEO the best fit for our business?
    One of the best parts about SEO is that it can benefit every type of business. So no matter if you are a small retirement community in Columbus, or if you have hundreds of assisted living facilities nationwide, SEO can help. Much like you have turned to the internet to look for services, it’s likely your potential residents, or their children, are doing the same, and SEO allows you to put your site in the best position possible when they are searching for what your facility provides.
  4. Can we expand on our services?
    Yes, not only would we love to expand our retainer with you for SEO, but we also offer a verity of other services such as paid marketing, social media, website design, HubSpot consulting, email marketing, and more which can all supplement the SEO we do and expand your reach.
“Sixth City Marketing has provided consulting, SEO and many other services to National Church Residences. The team has excellent advice and is very easy to work with.” – Karen Twinem, National Church Residences

Let’s Talk About Our Senior Living SEO Services

Contact us today to get more details on how we can help your community grow through SEO for assisted living and senior living. We look forward to talking with you.

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