Recently, a VP Marketing at a medical device company challenged me. He said “I don’t believe doctors use the Internet to research medical devices. Therefore, I (1) don’t believe my website is a lead generation tool for us, and (2) don’t see the value in search engine optimization. Based on this challenge, I did some research and found that doctors do, in fact, widely use the Internet to identify and research medical devices.
Here’s the proof:
1. Doctors are on the Internet:
a. One report I read reported that 58% of U.S. physicians surveyed said they go online for clinical information at least two times per day.
2. The search numbers are there:
a. Assume your company has developed a device that repairs holes in the heart. The keyword phrase “patent foramen ovale treatment” would be highly relevant to this company’s business, as would be the term “patent foramen ovale”. These terms describe defects that are repaired by this company’s device. These two keyword phrases get 130 searches per month on Google and 18,100 searches per month on Google, respectively. Another term, “septal repair implant”, while only getting about 40 searches per month on Google, is a highly qualified term and is one that would deliver great traffic to this company’s website.
b. What if your company has a device that enables surgeons to perform minimally invasive spinal surgeries? A relevant keyword phrase for this company would be “minimally invasive back surgery”, which gets 880 searches per month on Google.
c. Let’s say your company has developed a device that enables heart surgeons to perform “minimally invasive heart valve surgery” and to perform “robotic heart valve surgery”. These terms receive 260 searches per month on Google and 110 searches per month on Google, respectively.
The bottom line is that doctors are using the Internet to educate themselves on the latest medical devices. The question is, how do you build your website to drive these doctors to your website and convert them into qualified traffic once they’re on the site? The answer is crucial for medical device companies because competition is fierce, and if your site isn’t optimized, your competition may be grabbing market share that you otherwise would have obtained.