Somewhat recently, another life science marketing agency (who shall remain anonymous), wrote that “No one ‘peruses’ websites from the homepage anymore. Sites need to be optimized to have an infinite number of ‘front doors’.” They’re largely correct on the first part – many users today will find your web content via search or other avenues which will lead them to an entry point that is not your homepage. However, the claim that every page should be a “front door” is flat-out wrong. If you’re not controlling the entry points to your website, you need a good dash of … SEO.
SEO, despite its name, isn’t all about simply ranking our website higher in the search engine rankings. Another crucial component of SEO is controlling which one of your website’s pages will show up highest for any given search term. Life science companies need to not only assess what terms they want to optimize for, but what content they want searchers for those terms to find. The best SEO plan is the one that executes on both of these factors.
The most basic tool for life science SEO is the landing page. Landing pages are single web pages that are designed to provide highly targeted content for a particular purpose. In the context of SEO, landing pages are often “one-way” pages designed to be content-rich on a particular topic, pulling in searchers for that term. Targeted audiences might be for a particular type or class of product, researchers using a particular type of sample or organism, or scientists looking to perform a specific type of analysis. Often the content of landing pages is too specific to make sense having on the more general sections of your website, but provide information that is highly relevant to your audience.
Landing pages are just one tool in the life science SEO toolbox, however. There are many other methods to control entry to your website, and not all of them even occur on your own site. For example, there are ways of “donating” SEO from one page to another. There are ways of creating super-effective landing pages outside your main website, then using those to drive traffic back to your site. The list of tools in the toolbox goes on…
Your website is not simply at the mercy of the search engines. Search engine optimization can be used to not only improve search rankings, but also to channel search traffic through specific paths and optimize how viewers interact with your website. Your website is your most important internet marketing tool, and controlling entry points is a key factor in wielding that tool properly.