The search for an assisted living facility, whether for oneself or a loved one, can be a trying time that often becomes overwhelming for those involved.
But assisted living facilities that invest in quality senior living SEO can help put the minds of potential residents and their families at ease.
Offering valuable information in business listings, generating reviews so they can learn from residents’ experiences and creating the right website content can seriously help them as they make one of life’s biggest decisions.
Making the process of discovering the right nursing home simple and reassuring is the least we can do for our senior citizens, and fortunately, it can all be done with just one suite of tools.
While senior living search engine optimization shares a lot of the same techniques applied generally in local SEO, there are some things that set it apart.
The focus in senior living SEO should be on the qualities of the facility that convey safety and care, meaning testimonials from other residents and families are especially valuable.
Reviews are visible from the outset of a local search for an assisted living facility, because they’re displayed in the Local Pack on the first page of Google results.
In the example above, the top result is likely to get the most attention. Colonial Assisted Living has significantly more reviews than the second and third results, plus a particularly glowing review in the extract.
But there’s more to getting this kind of search exposure than simply having the highest number of reviews, including smart listings distribution and quality online content.
With multiple local options for senior living, working on local SEO so your facility stands out like Colonial Assisted Living can make a huge impact on the number of new residents moving in.
Before you can climb to the top of Google’s Local Pack like Colonial Assisted Living, you’ll first need to optimize your Google Business Profile (GBP).
Claim and verify your profile (search the name of your assisted living facility to see if one already exists) or create a new one .
Go through every section of the GBP editor to make sure you’ve completed everything and added as much value as possible.
Pay special attention to the description, which gives you up to 750 characters to present your assisted living facility in the best light, including relevant keywords.
Choose the category that best describes your nursing home as your primary category and, if relevant, select others as secondary categories:
Add photos to give users a clear idea of what the community is like and help them feel confident about paying you a visit and getting the full tour.
The questions and answers section is a great place to put any common queries you typically get (you can add your own questions and answer them yourself), so users can quickly determine whether they’ve found the right place.
You should also list if your facility has wheelchair access and disabled toilet accessibility.
Make sure your NAP data (name, address, phone number) is accurate, because when you go on to build more business listings, they’ll need to match your GBP exactly.
Listing on other directories not only maximizes your visibility, but it also sends a signal to search engines like Google that your business has a strong online prominence, which is a ranking factor according to Google itself.
Properly optimized listings with good reviews are more likely to appear in voice search results. With a larger percentage of the senior population suffering from vision impairment, voice search optimization should be included in your overall local SEO strategy.
Helping hand: Listing distribution is an important part of senior living SEO, but it can take a long time to build a strong presence if you’re uploading your details to each directory individually. Use Semrush’s Listing Management to get your nursing home published in 70+ directories and see improvements in your rankings faster.
Online reviews are likely the first thing people searching for retirement homes check as part of their decision-making process.
Review generation for senior living SEO needs to be done with more tact than a restaurant, for example, because reviewers will be giving feedback on the care of their loved one, if not their own experience with assisted living.
While sending an SMS with a link to your Google reviews link to your Google reviews is usually the best strategy, nursing homes might benefit from approaching residents and family members for reviews face-to-face.
The right time might be at the end of a scheduled meeting after everyone is in agreement that all is well and the resident is happy.
When you do receive reviews, it’s important to leave a reply. Replying to reviews is beneficial to assisted living search engine optimization for three reasons:
Negative reviews are especially important to get back to. Even if you’ve only got one bad review, people considering leaving their parents in your care will check it to see if it has any merit. Your reply should acknowledge the complaint and explain what’s been done to make amends. If you’re able to satisfy them with your response, they may decide to take the review down.
Simplify reviews: Residents and their families are free to leave reviews on any platform they choose, and it’s up to you to keep track of them all. To make life easier, use Semrush’s Review Management Semrush’s Review Management to gather all your reviews into one interface so you don’t leave a single review without a response.
Business listings are a big part of a successful senior living search engine optimization strategy, but you can’t ignore your website.
First, you’ll want to do a site audit to make sure your technical SEO is up to scratch. Urgent things you might need to fix include:
Once your site health has been given the all clear, it’s time to move on to your senior living SEO content strategy.
Content creation starts with thorough keyword research. Users won’t just be looking for things like “retirement home in [location]”, they’ll also be searching for specific amenities like “assisted living with activities” or have questions about insurance.
Potential residents may have specific needs, such as assistance with serious vision or hearing impairment, so content that addresses any doubts about the level of care on offer positions your senior living facility above others that don’t mention it.
It’s often the children of senior citizens that are looking for guidance on the best retirement homes for their mom and dad, so consider the kinds of questions they would have.
Show what life is like in the assisted facility. Both seniors and their families will be looking for evidence that their loved ones will be safe and well cared for.
The transition into assisted living can be an emotional time, so all content must be written with the feelings of those involved in mind.
Senior citizens aren’t always tech-savvy, so nice clear websites and simple navigation can go a long way to getting them to commit to a tour.
Attract more customers with listings in top local directories