Why Dentists & Healthcare Clinics Need Local SEO For Their Websites?

It’s all about magnifying your location and communicating consistent, accurate business details. When people in your area search for a dentist Google needs an accurate, professional, and consistent presence.

Find your practice listing (or add one if you’re new), login to each one (Google, Bing, & Yahoo) to confirm the listing and make sure the information being transmitted is correct – primarily your business name (some nuance allowable – but BE CONSISTENT EVERYWHERE), business address, and business phone.

Example of Nuance – nothing needed for location & phone details, it is what it is:

  • Anytown Smile Design: Dr John Smith – OK
  • Best Anytown Dentist | Cosmetic Dental Excellence Anytown | Call 020 7… – NOT OK. Too much information, incorrect, violates guidelines.

Did you know with large or group practices…the practitioners can also have Google listings in addition to the primary practice organization?

that you’ve gone through the process of verifying your dental practice listings in Google (Plus and/or Places), Bing, & Yahoo, AND properly categorized the listing, AND confirmed correctness of info, AND optimizing each listing to 100% with appropriate imagery, special offers, or captivating call to action copy, AND double-checked your work…now it’s time to work on improving the ranking factors of each listing.

Dentists, as all local business owners, can boost their ranking factors in those foundational search engine environs through leveraging their name, address, and phone data by disseminating it through various local search directories, IYP (internet yellow pages), and niche dental health portals.

Your strategy can be as simple as doing a search for a dentist in your area, and taking note of the websites that show up in the organic search engine results pages (SERPs). Local search sites like Yell and specialty portals such as NHS direct are all sites to target with your citation building efforts. Choose sites that are the most popular with users in your area, or that show up well on a variety of searches – or dig a little deeper and see where your competition is ranking, then follow in kind. After that selection process, go through each listing for your practice (or add new ones if needed) to make sure the information listed is accurate and up to date. Most sites allow some type of search – either by phone number or business name – to see if your practice is already listed.

Most if not all local search sites and specialty portals offer FREE listings.

You just need to identify, claim, & maximize those listings to your advantage by creating a window into your practice. To do this, use keywords and locations, ensure proper categorizing, and build out each profile to 100% completeness.

Online Review Generation

Online reviews for dentists can be difficult to come by IF there is no strategy in place to collect, publish, then amplify your digital word of mouth. But for those practices either employing a software supported system, or going at it with a stand alone option, building online reviews for their dental practice is a totally automated icing on the cake benefit of local seo tactics.

reviews are an important ranking signal in particular to your Google+, along with proper categorization, and relative office location to where people are actually searching from on their quest for a new dentist.

So how do dentists collect and publish more online reviews?

It all starts with a plan. Collecting reviews is easy, but the ultimate goal is to recruit new patients by offering testimonials from existing ones. Sure positive reviews make you feel good and reinforce why you chose this profession in the first place, but without prospective patients in your local area actually seeing the reviews when they’re on the search for a local dentist, they’re really only good for the ego.

this point most major dental software providers offer some type of automated review generation strategy, BUT the one major missing ingredient with amplifying that digital word of mouth is where the reviews live.

You want your reviews on Google+, and all verified sites

So, while it is good to actively solicit more reviews using automated solution like dental software, ultimately that is the place your reviews live – IN your dental software, | ON THEIR site or application (or one hosted by them). That’s all well and good, but what happens to those reviews if you switch providers or discontinue the service?

A better alternative is to develop an organic, non-invasive, completely unannoying system of collecting reviews for your dental practice – using email as the foundational element.

  • Reviews that patients can publish directly to your website or blog.
  • Reviews that your patients can leave on their social media or local search site of their choosing.
  • Reviews that are properly marked up with microdata in order to show those eye-grabbing gold stars in the search engine results pages.

A quick example of an organic review generation system could be something as simple as:

  • Crafting a custom email message to your patients asking them to leave your practice a review – with call to action buttons linking to your social media and local search listings.
  • Allowing them to choose where & when they leave the review – present options (not just your software app), and follow up with surveys, news, health tips…etc. (If the only email communication I get from you is an appt reminder 48 hours before my appointment, start communicating more regularly with your patients using email).
  • Sending them an email message with these design elements in place so patients are only a click away from positively amplifying your digital word of mouth.

So there we have it…

3 Ways Dentists Using Local SEO Can Get New Patients

  • By Owning (& optimizing) Your Local Search Engine Presence (Google+ Local, Bing Places, Yahoo…etc.)
  • By Expanding Your Online Practice Visibility
  • By Amplifying You Digital Word of Mouth (Review Generation)

Contact FooCo today for a free appraisal of your Local SEO Status