Trying to get more notice for your resume site as a medical coder? These SEO tips and tricks for beginners can help you break through.

medcoding.jpg Being a medical coder doesn't mean you're proficient in business. Coders lean on the introverted side and find pitching services difficult. They lack skills like sales and marketing despite being masterful at their work. The challenge is conveying your value. Typical clients may not understand the ins and outs of your coding abilities. They fail at seeing the big picture when you describe the code's architecture. This miscommunication nudges prospects away, causing you to lose the opportunity. A way to overcome this is letting your work speak for you. Plus, employing a few SEO tips and tricks. A personal portfolio site showing your projects and expertise will land clients. Yet, there's more to launching a portfolio than crafting its elegant code. You need it optimized for search -- and that's the topic of this post.

Optimize a Site like Elegant Code: SEO Tips and Tricks to Get Traffic and Land Clients

More than 16.5-million Americans take part in the "gig economy". You should note this is both a wonderful opportunity but a tough prospect. You can bet there is always someone more skillful going after the gigs that interest you. Competition is fierce... so what do you do? Great code work speaks for itself but you need to get it in front of people making business decisions. Search engine optimization -- through best practices -- helps your personal portfolio rank. Higher rankings, even against tough odds, presents more opportunities to land clients. Here's what you will do (in 8 helpful tips and tricks):

1. Optimize Your Keywords

Keyword optimization involves taking to Google in search of industry phrases. Then, applying keywords to their relevant pages in hopes Google increases search rankings. Your keywords should include items like your:
  • Location
  • Specialty
  • Benefits
Example: a generic "medical coder" becomes "medical coder in (location)". This, with industry long-tail keywords, offers greater relevancy for search users. Apply these keywords on each webpage and in the meta description.

2. Show Your Work

Portfolio work benefits two intentions:
  • Personal branding
  • Search user intent
You've worked hard in becoming a professional coder -- this is your time to shine. The examples share benefits delivered to clients. These examples let prospects project what they'll get when hiring you -- it's a subtle sales tactic. The work examples also lend to keyword optimization. Your description of the work has natural language users input in a search. You can link to sub-pages on your site using the skills as keywords, boosting those pages in search, too.

3. Be Thorough

Longer content tends to rank better in search results. A way to "buffer" the content is simply being as thorough as you can. This involves finding and using latent semantic indexing keywords as content sub-sections. Break your content into three tiers:
  • Tier 1: Primary
  • Tier 2: Secondary
  • Tier 3: Resources
Using this idea, a page could include an explainer why (secondary) the item is important. The following section includes a skill breakdown (primary). And, wrap up with examples of your work (resources). Treating content this way makes Google index pages for more keywords. Your resume site will appear in more search results because of its LSI inclusion.

4. Turn Referrals into Backlinks

Backlinks are one of the most important ranking factors. Backlinks act as a "trust" -- links from trustworthy sites are positive signals for Google. The more you gain from reputable sources the higher your site tends to rank. Chances are, your clients operate very trustworthy websites. A backlink from their site would outweigh links from low-quality sources. This backlink could be an inclusion on the company blog or in a section like 'partners' page.

5. Create and Distribute Resources

Giving back to your industry has profound effects on SEO. A resource helping newcomers and veterans could get others backlinking as a reference. Or, linking to a page where you've collected the resources for download. Resources could include:
  • Worksheets
  • eBooks & guides
  • Video tutorials
  • Podcast
  • Infographics
You're repackaging your knowledge and content into a valuable freebie. People typically buying this information now have a reason to find your resource. This overwhelming value will boost your industry clout, too! Resources are also fantastic at spreading your name across social channels. Try sharing it on Twitter and especially a Reddit dedicated to your industry. The more your name is known in the industry the more prospects find your site.

6. Make the Site Blazingly Fast

People back out of a site if it takes more than a few seconds to load. Anyone leaving is a lost opportunity. But, Google also deems your website low quality. How can you improve the site speed?
  • Reduce reliance on images
  • Clean up and smush the code
  • Get better website hosting
  • Deliver content through a CDN
  • Cache pages using plugins/scripts
Ideally, you want a page to load in less than 3-seconds. Anything longer and you risk people leaving. If people leave, then your efforts are moot from the start.

7. Make the Site Mobile, Too

Google switched to their mobile-first index. In basic terms: Google wants your site optimized for mobile devices. The search engine places prominence on sites with mobile-friendly themes. What can you do to optimize for mobile?
  • Update your site's code to responsive
  • Switch to a new, mobile-ready theme
  • Deliver a mobile version to mobile users
A new site theme is likely your best option. You can use this change-over to optimize pages and improve its usability. Otherwise, consider outsourcing development, letting you focus on site content and outreach.

8. Explore Video Content

Try converting your work or site content into a video format. You could explore topics like:
  • How-tos
  • Lists
  • Opinions
  • Journaling
Google prominently displays YouTube videos in results. The fast indexing can help your site's pages index, too. Plus, you have a funnel sending people to your site through the call-outs and description. Create videos using screen recording tools or your smartphone camera. Then, upload videos to YouTube with a keyword optimized description and link.

Merge Sales, Marketing, and SEO like You Would Database Tables

You're in an amazing position because of your ability to learn and keep swaths of information. Learning SEO tips and tricks, and applying them, is no different than picking up a new coding language. Spend an afternoon devouring everything you can about SEO. Then, expand into related skills offering scalability to your client-getting efforts. See the search engine marketing section for more tips and tricks.




Search Engine Marketing Columnist



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Search Engine Guide > Robert Clough > Coding for Coin: 8 SEO Tips and Tricks for Your Medical Coding Resume Website