One of the biggest challenges that gyms face is attracting new members. When potential gym-goers are looking for a new gym, they tend to do a quick search online to see what is available in their local area. The first few top search results are what always catches their attention. To get your gym noticed amongst the masses, it’s important to put some time, energy and money into properly setting your website up for success. Gym SEO is vital to the success of your business. Why?
Online Gym Marketing
In today’s fast-paced online world, everywhere you turn someone is using their mobile device to either stay in contact with friends and family or more commonly to check out what is around their area. Online marketing is more crucial than ever before, and this goes double for mobile online marketing. If your website is not optimized and responsive for mobile devices, you are missing out on a huge audience, a huge group of potential new gym memberships. Gym SEO is the first step in your SEO strategy.
What is SEO?
More commonly referred to as search engine optimization, SEO is the process of optimizing your website or blog so that it ranks higher in the search engine results. The higher your ranking, the better the chance your website must appear higher in the search engine results. Think about it this way when you do a search, what pages to you typically click on in the search results? If you’re like everyone else it’s probably the top pages. That’s exactly where you want your website to be, and the right gym SEO strategy can do just that.
What is Organic Visibility?
Organic visibility is important to the success of your gym SEO efforts. Organic traffic is seen by Google as a more ligament type of traffic and helps you to become ranked higher in their search engine results. In fact, let’s look at the statistics on why organic visibility is important for your marketing plan.
- More than 70% of the links users online click on are organic
- More than 80% of users typically ignore any paid ads and instead focus more on the organic results
- Up to 80% of all users say they click on the organic results over any others listed in the top results.
Getting your website showing in search results is one of the steps, having a strong organic visibility presence is the other key element. The top results are where all the visibility is at. Did you know?
- More than 75% of users do not go further than the first page of search results.
- Almost 20% of the organic clicks from users go right up into the first position, 15% goes into the second and so forth.
Keywords and Content Are King!
When you first begin developing a gym SEO strategy for your business website, you will want to create a list of strong keywords to get you started. Keywords are vital to a strong SEO plan. When you think of keywords, they are very different from that of a search query. Let’s look to establish the difference between the two.
Keywords: These are short phrases or words that describe services or products you sell on your website. The keywords you choose you to want to show up when users and potential customers search for them.
Queries: These are more specific terms or a short series of terms that users type into a search engine. Queries are what users are looking for and keywords are what you can use to optimize your business website for.
To begin your very first list of potential keywords you will want to first do some in-depth analysis or keyword research. These keywords need to pertain to the focus of your business so that they will be successful. Consider what your gym or fitness business does. What type of services do you offer with your memberships? Are you an affiliate gym? What types of training do you want to market or advertise?
Start to develop your keyword list by reviewing exactly what your business does. Everything your business could possibly be known for. This will help to give you a great starting point. When you have a basic list, the next thing you want to do is to make sure there are people out there searching for these types of keywords. This is where the keyword research side of things comes into play. There are a few different tools that can be used if you attempt to do this type of work on your own, however, they are always not the best. Having an SEO professional help, you will always be best.
Expanding Your Keyword Lists
Once you have a good starting list of keywords, you will want to take a more in-depth look at your business and what types of services or classes you offer. Do you offer weightlifting classes, Zumba classes, martial arts classes, etc.? If you are a smaller gym what does your gym offer that makes you stand out amongst the larger gyms locally? More personalized service? Personal training? Think of what makes you unique in the masses of gyms out there and use this to compile a list of keywords that users may be looking for.
After you’ve put together a list of additional service and product-focused keywords, scan every page on your website for additional keywords that might be beneficial to include. Do you have instructors or trainers that have significant training or certification that may attract potential gym-goers?
Competition and Keywords
Make sure you take the time when developing your gym SEO plan to review what your competition is doing. Look through some of your competitor’s websites and look at the type of content they have included and what is really catching the attention of users on their page. Within their content scan for keywords that people might be looking for to find some additional information to help build up your list of potential keywords.
Let’s not forget about the term ‘long-tail keywords’. When you are researching keywords, you will learn that there are two different types of keywords that are included in the content. These are short and long-tail keywords. Short keywords are those that are much broader and have a stronger chance of being searched for. Long-tail keywords are much more specific than usually are made up of two or more words. While they don’t have as high of a search volume as the shorter keywords, they also have less competition than them as well. That is the main benefit of using long-tail keywords when developing your gym SEO plan.
More than 70% of all searches daily on the search engine giant, Google are typically from long-tail type searches. Because they have a much lower volume of searches this gives them a bigger chance at making it into the top search results. Not only do long-tail keywords have a lower search volume, but they have another benefit to them, a higher conversion rate. More specific search queries for someone looking into a gym membership most often means they are ready to make the leap and purchase a new membership, you just must draw their attention into you, which is why gym SEO is super important in this aspect.
Long-Tail Keywords: How to Start
If you aren’t familiar with them there are a few gym SEO friendly tips you can try. Keep in mind attempting this type of advanced SEO skill on your own can be challenging which is why it is always best to contact an SEO professional to handle this type of advanced technique.
One of the more successful methods of using a long-tail keyword is by adding a geo modifier to it. This simply means adding in a location such as a city or a state to help narrow the audience down to a specific target or local.
Must-Haves for Successful Gym SEO
Now that we’ve discussed some of the inner workings and vital elements of gym SEO, let’s look and see what some ‘must-haves’ that cannot be missed when it comes to creating a solid gym SEO plan. When you visit a new website have you had that feeling of déjà vu before? Like you’ve been here and are looking at it again but with a new, fresh set of eyes? Developing a brand trust with a company is something that virtually every brand strives for. It’s something you, like a gym or fitness owner, will want to establish right away. Here are a few must-haves to include on your gym SEO website, so you can develop that trust.
- Personal Information Such as an Address or Phone Number
Gyms are local, they offer unique services to those in an area. Because of this, you will want to include your address or addresses, and phone numbers so that when a potential new gym-goer stumbles to your website, they’ll know just where to find you.
- Membership Packages and Other Services
You will want to have a menu to attract new potential customers. This menu should include the types of services and facilities you offer on-site as well as what your membership fees or schedule is like. Each service and facility should have its own separate page. Developing gym SEO for each page will help to get you ranked higher by the search engines and show potential new customers you really care about the types of services you have to offer.
- Testimonials or Reviews from Previous Clients
Nothing really speaks volumes about your business quite like the options of those who came before. Getting recommendations by previous or even current gym clients/ customers is a great way to show potential new customers what your gym really has to offer and how customer friendly you are. Getting those coming to your gym to share before and after testimonials is another great way to include gym SEO to add some additional value to your website and show why your gym sticks out amongst the masses.
- Current Deals or Discounts
If you are offering any deals or discounts this is a must-have page on your website especially when you are trying to boost your gym SEO efforts. If you have a way for clients or prospective clients to get a free pass to use for any of your services, this is another type of deal that should be included.
Gym SEO What You NEED to Know
Now that we’ve discussed the must-haves of any successful gym SEO website, there are some things you should know before venturing our and trying to optimize your website properly. These include:
Optimizing Your Website Locally
As a gym owner, most of your business is local. Therefore, it is vital to the success of any gym SEO strategy that you ensure you have locally optimized your website. How do you start this process? Start with making sure you’ve included all your local contact information so that those around you and nearby know how to not only contact you but where you are physically located.
Fresh, New Content
Fresh, new content posted on a consistent basis will help to improve your rankings. Even if this means you post a new blog only once a week. This type of schedule is better than some we’ve seen out there today. A new posting every week gives Google some new information and page data to crawl through.
Social media content offers more information for search engine algorithms to go through. Keeping your pages up to date is the first important step in social data and content. Building up your brand reputation has been easier in the past few years. Now that you can do almost anything from your telephone or mobile device, sometimes we take for granted the convenience of everything.
What do Internet Users want?
It’s simple and easy to learn what those who search on the internet really want. Customers and potential new gym-goers don’t’ want to be bored. They want content that is updated frequently, but something with value to them. Because they are coming to a fitness and lifestyle change type of website, giving them tips tricks or other types of articles, you can include. This adds value and a personal touch to your website.
Content is STILL the Head Honcho
Content is still king that’s for sure. You need to ensure you’re creating and posting high-quality content on a regular basis. Whether this type of content is from a blog, new discount programs or services you are offering, instructional videos or even memes or infographics, you should be constantly updating on a regular basis. This allows you to create your own online presence and present yourself as a credible source of fitness and gym information.
You know your audience, you customers, and those you are trying to attract, so figuring out what to post and what types of content would work best for your audience, should be simple for you. Just make sure you have consistency not only in the frequency of your postings but the types of information you are giving out on a regular basis. Jumping around could lead to difficulty down the road.
Maps and Locale
Like we’ve discussed above, fitness businesses and gyms are all local. Because of this, you will want to ensure your SEO professional places into your gym SEO a plan to localize and optimize your website properly. This may include putting up a map with your address and how to get there should someone get lost along the way.
Google my Business
This type of listing is included in the map section on the Google website. It’s a website that can really help to increase your overall brand awareness and presence. It is easier to get a Google my Business page ranked higher than it is organized traffic elsewhere. It’s important to fill out any information you give to gale properly. This will increase your chances of Google accepting your application for this website. Let’s look at what you need to do to qualify.
Make sure you accurately fill out your application with the following
NAP: This is your name address and phone number. All of this must be correct and matching any supporting documents you have for your business.
Categories: Categories are great for those looking to map the google my business
Business Hours: This is vital because people may be online searching for your hours of operation as we speak. Having the hours right on your web page allows people to know exactly when you are open for service.
Business Directory and Gym SEO
Google My Business has become a great way for brick and mortar businesses to get listed in a business directory. It is a free directory that gives you the opportunity to take ownership of how your business is listed online. The idea behind Google My Business (GMB) is using citations that allow you to have relevant search queries for your gym to appear in. As we discussed above including a local keyword can help attract local customers or potential new memberships. This is like how you want to cite your business in GMB. Adding in your local area, city, or even county can help to target customers looking to purchase a new gym membership where you are located. There are no rules for GMB on how many citations you can or should use, but most professional SEO strategists will use anywhere from 50 to 100 for their clients to expand their reach and brand awareness as much as possible.
Let’s talk about your brand. Your brand is who your business is, and what you represent. When people currently think about your gym what do they think of? How do you represent yourself to the public? This is your brand. If you currently don’t like the way you are being represented, then you can change this. It’s important with any gym SEO plan when you are developing it that you research and consider how you want your brand to appear to customers and potential new customers. Developing a brand is one of the most important steps when you start your online marketing path.
Brand awareness isn’t just what people think about your business but how you represent yourself. This can include a logo and any sayings, taglines or other phrases you use when marketing your gym in print and online media. Consider the logo of your gym and if the current one you have is really standing out amongst your competitors. Remember you want to attract new clients/ customers and retain the ones you currently have. They need to see why your gym is better than the others around you. Reviewing your competition as we discussed is also a vital step in making sure you have online gym SEO success.
Making sure to check in from time to time on how your competition is marketing themselves online, what services and products they are offering and how their clients and customers interact with them on social media can help you to develop a sense of what you should be doing and how to go above and beyond to stand out. Looking at others and developing your own plan can help to ensure you are always staying one step ahead of the game and looking more attractive to potential new customers and your current ones. They need to see why you are special and why your brand is one they want to be associated with.
Gym SEO Conclusion
As you can see Gym SEO is extremely important for all fitness or gym owners. IT allows you to get your name out there even further by increasing your brand awareness, conversion rate and much more. Getting to get your gym noticed and out there to the masses of potential gym goes is fun and entertaining when you look at it as more than just a job.