SEO for Your Dental Practice
If you want your dental practice to compete locally, it’s crucial to have a strong online presence. A key element of that presence is search engine optimization, or SEO. Every day, billions of people use search engines like Google when shopping for products and services. With quality SEO, your practice will appear early on the search engine results page (SERP), increasing your visibility and generating more business.
Seems simple enough, but how do you get your practice to that coveted #1 spot on Google? SEO tactics vary from industry to industry, so it’s important to tailor your strategy to your specific business’ needs.
What makes dental SEO different from other forms of SEO?
SEO for dentistry, and the medical field at large, is something of a unique beast. Unlike ecommerce, where products are sold and shipped throughout the world, dental SEO requires a much more localized approach. After all, it’s probably not a good idea to target customers in California if you’re a dentist in Ohio. The main focus of your strategy as a dentist should be to rank highly for services in your locale.
For example, let’s say your practice offers teeth whitening in Columbus, Ohio. You’ll want to optimize your website for search terms such as, “teeth whitening columbus” and “columbus cosmetic dentist” rather than simply, “teeth whitening” or, “cosmetic dentist.”
How do I rank highly for dental services?
Now that we’ve identified the strategy, it’s time to talk about tactics. A good SEO presence usually comes from the use of multiple effective tactics.
A quality blog campaign is always a great start. Decide which services you want to rank well for, and then write (or outsource) content about them. Use an SEO service like Moz, KWFinder, or Ubersuggest to identify relevant keywords. Sprinkle in these keywords throughout your articles to let search engines know what the article is about. It’s important that you don’t overuse these keywords, a mistake known as “keyword stuffing” in the SEO community.
Technical SEO, simply put, is the process of ensuring search engines can read and understand the content of your website. Maybe one of the more daunting SEO tasks, it is a critical step in having your website rank well on the SERP. Search engines are constantly evaluating your website – making sure that links aren’t broken, pages aren’t taking too long to load, and your site is generally user-friendly. Fortunately, there are loads of tools available that can analyze your website for technical flaws and allow you to fix them to get the best results. These include SEMRush, AgencyAnalytics, and more. Keep in mind that after you fix technical issues, it can take some time for search engines to recognize the new changes, so be patient!
Service Landing Pages
It’s always a good idea to have specific pages on your website for the individual services you want to promote. For example, if you want to sell more dental implants, then you’ll want a dedicated dental implants page. This makes it easier for customers who are searching for these services in your area to find your practice! Make sure you use relevant keywords on each service page for best results.
Local SEO/Google Business Profile
Have you ever searched for a product or service and noticed the little “card” on Google with a business’s phone number, address, and hours? Then you’ve seen a Google Business Profile, or GBP. GBP’s may well be the most important part of local SEO. GBP’s are incredibly useful for business and customers alike, and give you the option to share a wealth of information with your potential market. They make it easy for customers to find and contact your office with any questions, resulting in more business for your practice.
Another important aspect of Local SEO are your other local listings, like Yelp. It’s important to claim the listings of your practice so you can add information such as hours and services. When this information is consistent and correct across all of your listings, this is a positive sign to search engines that you are a real business, in a real place, with real customers.
SEO may be complex and ever-changing, but the principles mentioned above will never change. If your website is easy to use, and if your content is relevant, then chances are your practice will be rewarded.
Remember that SEO is a marathon, not a sprint. It can take 6 months or longer to see results, especially in a saturated market. Google rewards consistent attention to your site, so keep the faith! Thanks for reading, and may the search engine results be ever in your favor!