Why Every Addiction Treatment Center Needs LegitScript Certification


These days, credentials matter. Everywhere you turn, companies are trying to sell you their goods, services, or ideas. Determining who’s legit and who’s full of it can be daunting.

Fortunately, there are universally recognized trust signals to determine if a person, organization, or company is worthy of your business. Doctors are authenticated with board certifications and specializations. For retail stores, the proof is a chamber of commerce membership or a Better Business Bureau accreditation. Websites use verification through their posted privacy policy and SSL encryption.

But what about addiction treatment centers? Unfortunately, there are 21 million Americans struggling with addiction, and there is a greater need for rehabilitation centers than ever before.1 But knowing who to trust online can be difficult for patients and their loved ones.

What is LegitScript?

LegitScript is an online trust signal for complex healthcare sectors, including addiction treatment, healthcare merchants like pharmacies, and CBD merchants. The service verifies the trustworthiness of treatment centers by observing and stage-checking their business processes to ensure they’re ethical.

According to LegitScript, “We envision a commercial internet that makes life better for everyone, where individuals and businesses can make informed decisions based on accurate information about who they are working with and what they’re buying.2 That’s why we strive to be the most trusted advisers to inform businesses, governments, and the public about which commercial entities are legitimate, legal, and trustworthy—and which are not.”

The LegitScript mission is admirable—and necessary. In 2016, when the public became more aware of the opioid crisis gripping the nation, online addiction treatment services and products popped up left and right. Sadly, many of these websites were run by scammers who hurt, rather than helped, desperate patients and their families.

In response to the dramatic increase in fraud, Google banned paid advertisements targeting drug rehab-related keywords in late 2017. Even though a total ban sounds shocking, this decision by Google created space to address the problem. The company knew providing access to addiction treatment information was necessary. But they also needed a tool to prevent bad actors in the space from taking advantage of those searching for assistance.

The following year, Google started allowing addiction treatment centers to target addiction keywords again—as long as they were LegitScript certified.

Is LegitScript Required?

Technically speaking, a LegitScript certification isn’t required. There’s no government agency enforcing, or even monitoring, compliance. You can legally operate an addiction treatment center without this certification. But not getting certified means you’ll be doing your program a grave disservice.

You can always target organic SEO keywords on your website and in your content marketing. But without a valid LegitScript certification you won’t be able to create and share paid advertising targeting addiction-related keywords. Centers aiming for these keywords without the proper certification risk being banned from paid ads entirely. Though it might feel like a gatekeeping step, making organizations who want to target drug and alcohol rehab keywords in their PPC campaigns prove they’re who they say they are is a big deal for patient safety.

For addiction treatment center marketers, making your LegitScript certification a priority is worth the time and cost. Paid advertising is an important part of a balanced marketing plan and being able to use this digital marketing tool makes up for the investment.

Additionally, securing your LegitScript certification is a strong trust signal for your digital presence. This verification shows your site visitors and search engines that your treatment center is a real program, legitimately established and dedicated to transforming lives for the better.

Not surprisingly, the National Association of Addiction Treatment Providers (NAATP) has endorsed LegitScript certification for every addiction treatment center and provider. Certification positions you to reach as many patients as possible, and as a result, to save as many lives as possible.

Why Do You Need LegitScript?

Clearly, you need LegitScript to demonstrate your trustworthiness. Also, you’ll open your paid advertising options to target the best addiction treatment keywords for your program. Without certification, your online presence will be nonexistent, and you’ll struggle to connect with new patients.

Dreamscape Marketing can help with the requirements for your drug rehab center’s LegitScript certification. Our industry strategists are familiar with the certification process. They can help you review your materials and make sure your application is complete. Call us at 888.307.7304 to learn more and schedule your strategy session today.



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