Your senior living website is a powerful tool. It provides potential residents with information, education, answers, and more. It also helps your senior living community drive traffic, generate leads, and understand your target audience. But, before this can happen, it needs to be found by the people that matter.
While you can (and should!) share your website on your social media profiles, email marketing efforts, printed materials, and beyond, users should be able to organically find your website through search engines.
68% of online experiences begin with a search engine.
In order for this to happen, your website has to be indexed. Google shares, “a page is indexed by Google if it has been visited by the Google crawler ("Googlebot"), analyzed for content and meaning, and stored in the Google index. Indexed pages can be shown in Google Search results.”
Some people might assume that having a website is enough; that Google will inevitably index it, but some issues may prevent this from happening. As a senior living marketing agency, Markentum is sharing four reasons why Google isn't crawling your website and how you can address these issues.
1. Your Website Isn’t Mobile-Friendly
Before the prominence of smartphones, Google used the desktop version of a web page’s content. However, since most users now access Google Search with a mobile device, Google established mobile-first indexing in July 2019.
Google adds, “it's important to note that there isn't a separate mobile-first index; Google Search continues to use only one index. Google Search continues to show the URL that is the most appropriate to users (whether it's a desktop or mobile URL) in Search results.”
While not having a mobile version of your pages may not entirely prevent your website from being indexed, it will drastically impact your rankings and, in turn, organic traffic. When it comes to organic search, you are competing with other senior living communities. If your competitors have mobile-friendly sites and you don’t, they will rank more highly for search queries.
You can use this free tool to see if your website page is mobile-friendly. If your pages don’t pass, consider website design and development services to help you refresh your website’s look and feel. Markentum employs responsive designs so that our partners’ websites can be easily viewed on any desktop, tablet, and mobile device.
2. Your Website Loads Too Slowly
Similar to mobile friendliness, the speed at which your website loads impacts the user experience. Google’s mission is to continuously improve the user experience when it comes to search results. Slow-loading websites make Google less likely to want them featured in the top results of their index.
A slow-loading website could be based on a number of factors, such as:
- Too many large, unoptimized images
- Bad hosting
Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool can analyze a webpage against performance best practices, such as reducing payload size, leveraging browser caching, etc., and provide suggestions about how to improve each area.
Of course, it’s best to have web development knowledge before making any changes to your website to avoid deleting code or breaking page elements. Fortunately, a senior living marketing agency, like Markentum, can help by reviewing your current website and providing direction on how to improve page speeds and overall performance.
3. Your Website Has Minimal or Low-Quality Content
Another reason your website may not be indexed or ranking is because you have minimal website copy. While photo and video content are important, you can’t beat high-quality written content when it comes to indexing and ranking in search results.
The content on your website needs to be well-written and informative to answer questions, provide information, and highlight your community’s offerings. According to Search Engine Journal, “thin pages can cause indexing issues because they don’t contain much unique content and don’t meet minimum quality levels compared to your competition.”
Reevaluate the copy on your website pages, focusing on the pages that you think should be generating the most traffic. Implement relevant keywords throughout your page copy and provide content that adds value to the user’s experience.
4. Meta Tags Are Set to Noindex, Nofollow
While less common than the other issues, Search Engine Journal shares, “sometimes… meta tags are set to noindex, nofollow. For example, your site may have a link or page that was indexed by Google’s crawler and then deleted before the change to noindex, nofollow was set up correctly in your website’s backend.”
Fortunately, this fix is simple! Change any meta tags with the words noindex,nofollow on them, so they read index, follow instead.
If you’re worried about your website’s performance or would like to learn more about our website design and development services, contact Markentum today for a free evaluation – we would love to learn more about your senior living community!