6 APA approved tips to grow your therapy practice and improve your website

You are a fantastic, talented therapist. Any individual looking for therapy would be lucky to find a match with you, but are you making it easy on them to find you? Having a great website and a strong online presence helps you connect with more patients and allow you to make a greater impact. Here are 6 marketing tips you can use to improve your web presence and boost your marketing strategy according to the American Psychology Association’s magazine, Good Practice (winter 2020 issue)

   1. Determine your Value Proposition and Personality

The first and most important thing to include in your website is your value proposition (VP). What is a value proposition? It is a statement that describes the services you provide and who it is for. You should add a description, along with your VP, of your trajectory and details that give prospects a feeling of your personality. It will help patients determine if you are a good match for the help they need. For example, The Orchid Counselling Services sets as VP: “Compassionate psychotherapy to help you find peace and happiness.” This lets patients know what type of therapy to expect and what results they will work towards. A client dealing with stress or anxiety might find this reassuring and see a good fit with this mental health provider. 

   2. Use an amazing, clean website design

First impressions usually are made on looks. The same principle applies to your practice. It is extremely important to have a website that looks professional and is organized into sections to facilitate navigation. Whether you want to DIY or hire a team for your website design, we compiled a few options for you in our article “24 websites for therapy worksheets, tools, and resources to boost your practice.” Some design tips we can give you based on APA’s article are:

  • Use an easy-to-read font
  • Use high contrasting colors for background and text to facilitate reading
  • Less is more - keep your site uncluttered with short texts and few design elements.
  • Organize information in a way that patients don’t have to dig for it.

Additionally, make sure your site is functional. Visitors should be able to make appointments or payments without hassle. You must have a clear call to action like “schedule here” highlighted in a button so patients can know what to do next to acquire your services. Learn more about additional scheduling tools for therapists here.

   3. Be consistent across all platforms 

Assuming you have determined your value proposition and your design style, it is critical to maintain and reinforce them across all platforms and profiles you use. Remind your patients what you offer across your social media. If you have a profile in a directory like Psychology Today, be sure to include it in your description. This way, your services will become recognizable by potential patients and will increase their trust in you. Whenever they want a session, you’ll be top of mind. The same principle applies to appointment scheduling. Provide your patients with a patient-centered scheduling link across all platforms in order to facilitate bookings and increase visitors’ conversion rates.  

A final crucial point is to keep all your profiles, regardless of the channel, interconnected - It allows you to take advantage of traffic on one profile and redirect it to another. 

   4. Generate helpful content based on SEO (Search Engine Optimization) Keywords

95% of web traffic goes to websites found on the first page of search results. Consistently generating content is critical to maintaining your profile on Google’s top search ranking spots. Another relevant piece of the puzzle is generating content that addresses the keywords patients use for therapy-related searches. A great way you can keep your content updated is to target those keywords and further help your patients by publishing proactive articles on your site (ie. “3 breathing exercises for anxiety or panic attacks”). More often than not, therapy is sought after patients are in pain; however, you can provide them with content that addresses their concerns at an earlier stage to offer them some relief. Such articles aren’t meant to substitute a therapy session, rather, when their next appointment arrives they will have a further understanding of what is to be seen in session. This results in patients feeling accompanied by you outside of the consult as well.

If you wish to learn more about SEO for beginners check this article out.   

   5. Form a community with patients and peers

One of the best things we’ve gotten from the internet and social media is the ability to interact bidirectionally within a community. This presents an amazing opportunity for mental health providers since therapy is based on support. What better support system than creating a community of trust and healing within your website? By interacting with patients and giving them a space where they can talk to peers and ask questions, you can enhance your impact, increase the traffic to your site and gain new patients. Google’s algorithm notices web pages that are highly engaging and contain interactions, resulting in better SEO positioning for your practice. Along with this, you can create a network of professionals that support each other and nurture collaborations for a blog entry for example. 

   6. Use Google Ads to expand your reach

You might feel reluctant to run ads promoting your website and services; however, advertising is a great way to reach prospective patients actively searching for therapy services. Google Ads, for example, positions your site at the top of the searches for the keywords you select. Therefore if a patient is looking for “couple’s therapy” and you provide such services - and choose these keywords for your ads - you can connect faster with the right patients. In addition to this, it’s important to know what social media your patients use. This way you can run an ad campaign on said platform when your client volume drops or plateaus to attract new patients. Google Ads might be a handful for some mental health professionals which is why there are marketing agencies that can help you manage them or you can check out APA’s  guide: How to Create a Google Ads Campaign for your Therapy Practice

Digital marketing strategies make mental health services more accessible to everyone. It helps patients find you faster and easier while helping you position yourself as a top-notch therapist and attract more patients - resulting in a win-win scenario. 

If you are ready to convert site visits into scheduled appointments, check out Holly, the AI Assistant that schedules your session by phone, web, or text while managing telehealth, confirmations, cancellations, and payment logistics automatically.