Vital SEO for Independent Pharmacies

Like any small business, an independent pharmacy needs to have a website.

Just having a website is not the ‘silver bullet’ it was in the early years of Google, during the early 2000s. The days when simply having a website was an edge you had over your competitors are long over, and it has been years since anyone relied on the Yellow Pages to look up anything.

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In the US alone, there were more than 133 million websites as of August 2021, with 175 new websites being created every minute. Seventy-one percent (71%) of small businesses either have an existing website, or plan to get one.

So, how do you make your website stand out from the crowd?

To get noticed on search engines such as Google or Bing, you need to put in the work.

While embarking on a full-blown digital marketing campaign requires expertise, time and money, you do not need to spend a large amount to make a difference. Working smartly on some key areas can go a long way toward optimizing your site to attract more traffic, and hopefully, more patients.

Here are 5 best practices for expanding your pharmacy’s digital footprint.

Get a mobile friendly or responsive website

It is 2022 and most patients access the web through mobile devices. Mobile traffic generates more than 61% of all web traffic, compared with about 39% from desktop.

There is simply no excuse not to have a mobile optimized site. However, a mobile-friendly site does not simply mean your site is readable on a smaller screen; it also means planning for a different kind of functionality compared with a full desktop version of your site.

It is important not to overwhelm your users with an overly long (or large) menu that will be hard to navigate on a phone. Consider using a scaled down version of your menu to feature only the most basic or important parts of your site. Use larger, clickable areas so users can easily navigate between pages.

Perform basic SEO


Performing SEO (search engine optimization) on your website is a worthwhile time investment.

SEO is a broad topic that encompasses everything from making your site mobile-friendly (as we have already mentioned) to making sure that the user experience of visitors to your site is optimized.

With SEO, the end goal is always user experience. Is the site easy to navigate? Does the site load fast enough? Can visitors easily find vital information such as your phone number and location?

Basic things to look out for include:

  • Page titles and meta descriptions - Using better page titles is one of the easiest ways for your site to be found online.

    Page titles are the first thing users see when searching for your website through any search engine. Each  page on your website uses a title you specify. Write a concise title highlighting the page’s specific content and append either your pharmacy’s name at the end or a unique tagline that provides additional information. Aim for 30-60 characters so the search engines do not cut off important details. Page titles tell both users and search engines what the page is about.
    In the example above, the page is about the pharmacy’s MedSmart Program and the words after the dash provide information about where the business is located.
  • Meta descriptions that appear underneath the title in search results provide a summary of the page content. Aim for 50 to 150 characters. Write a unique page title and meta description for each page of your site. 
  • Images – Optimize images for faster loading by using image compression and by using smaller versions of your photos so they do not take forever to load. Aim for a fifth of a megabyte or less to ensure fast loading.
  • Business Information - Make sure that your visitors do not have to search for your phone number, address, and contact form. Display these elements prominently on top of your site as well as on your website footer. Having a ‘contact us’ page link in your navigation menu is likewise a good idea.

Read more on SEO through Google’s guide to resources here:

Google My Business

Google My Business is a service offered by Google for businesses. Your business profile on Google shows basic website information such as your location (on Google Maps), your social media information, latest offers and images, as well as any reviews your customers and patients have left you online.

Sign up for the free service and claim your business listing here: Google Business Profile - Get Listed on Google


How do you tell your patients and potential patients about your pharmacy's new products, services, and events?

While having a basic list of your products and services on your site is a good idea, creating a blog that your loyal customer base – and new patients – can refer back to and explore is much better.

Create blog posts that contain ‘meaty’ content with at least 700 words, including images, graphics, and even videos on topics relevant to your business. This will help spread your digital influence.

What you choose to write about is up to you. Just keep in mind the interests of your patients and what they will find interesting or helpful.

Using social media and other channels

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To promote your pharmacy website and blog, establishing your business on social media channels can also help boost site visits and awareness for your practice.

You can create an official business profile on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Concentrate on just one or two channels to grow your audience. You can invite your existing patients to like your page or share your content online.

Does your pharmacy have any other basic, but effective, digital marketing practices? Please share them in the comments section below. We would love to hear from you!