Let’s face it: running a dental practice is hard work. You need to keep up with the latest techniques, stay on top of new technology, and be available for your patients when it matters most. The last thing you want to worry about is your online presence and how search engines will find you. But if you have time to worry about that aspect of your business, consider this: many prospective patients are searching for dentists online before making an appointment. It’s crucial that they can find what they need easily—and more importantly, quickly—on your site. This post will cover some basic strategies for improving your search engine optimization (SEO) so that more people will learn about all the great things going on at your practice!
The Basics of Good SEO
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of improving a website’s ability to rank in search engines. This is done by increasing the number of visitors to your site, and the time they spend there.
What are search engines? They are tools designed to help people find what they need online. People look for information for many reasons: to learn about a product or service, research an illness or condition, find out where to go on vacation, etc. These searches can be prompted by various factors, including keywords related to their inquiry and where they are located geographically (e.g., “Dentist near me”).
How does SEO fit into this process? When someone performs a search query using any major search engine—Google being arguably the most popular—the results will appear in some combination of three columns: organic or paid ads at the top; blue hyperlinks below that; and then white space below those links before getting into article results (or “10 Most Popular Searches Leading To ___.”) The more often people click on your website link within those first two columns, the better chance you have at appearing higher up in them when someone searches for similar terms later down their list when looking for additional information about dental care providers like yourself!
Develop a User-Friendly Website
A website is the first impression that people have of your dental practice. It’s where they go to find out more about you and whether or not they want to schedule an appointment with you.
Here are some things that will help your website be user-friendly:
- Use a good template and make sure it’s responsive to mobile devices.
- Make sure you have a sitemap that lets visitors quickly find what they’re looking for on your site.
- Have high-quality images that accurately represent your dental practice, so it feels welcoming when people visit it for the first time (or any time)
- Have quality content posted regularly so users know what kind of service they can expect if they become patients at one of your offices
Optimize Your Site for Mobile
Ensuring your site is optimized for mobile devices is essential for a dental practice. This means using responsive design and providing your site loads quickly on phones and tablets.
The easiest way is with a mobile-friendly CMS (content management system). These systems allow you to edit text, add images and videos, create forms, and more—all while they optimize the content automatically for different screen sizes.
Promote Positive Reviews
- Use a Review Management Tool
It’s important to ensure that your practice responds to positive and negative reviews and manages the review process itself. A good review management tool will help you respond quickly and positively to every patient comment posted on social media or other sites like Yelp, Google+, Angie’s List, etc. so that you can keep people coming back for more great experiences.
- Ask For Reviews
Studies show that getting your patients involved in the review process makes them feel more engaged with their dental care—and, therefore, more likely to return! So why not ask them directly? If you’re thinking of ways to improve your business’s online presence, this might be a straightforward way for dental practices everywhere: simply ask for reviews from happy patients! You could even offer discounts or incentives if someone leaves one—just make sure it doesn’t cross any ethical boundaries (like offering free services).
Post Quality, Public-Facing Content
Posting quality content is the most important strategy on this list. Quality content is more likely to be read by your audience, shared on social media, and linked to other websites.
If you’re not sure what quality means for your dental practice, here are some helpful tips:
- Put yourself in a patient’s shoes, looking for an answer to their question or concern. If they can’t find it on your website or don’t understand what they see, they’ll leave and look elsewhere.
- Write at a level appropriate for patients who might not have much knowledge about dental practices (but also don’t want boring text). This will help improve user experience and get higher rankings from search engines like Google!
Use Keywords to Target Specific Services and Locations
To improve your position in search results, use keywords that are relevant to your practice. Using the right keywords will help potential clients find you online when searching for services or locations.
To find relevant keyword phrases for dental practices:
- Use Google Keyword Planner (https://adwords.google.com/o/KeywordPlanner) to identify popular search terms related to dental care, such as “dentist near me” or “cavity filling near me”
Don’t Forget to Track Your Progress!
You can’t improve what you can’t measure, so it is important to track your progress. There are several ways to do this. Start with a Google Analytics account and use it religiously (it’s free!) – this will give you insight into how many people visit your website, what they do when they’re there, and ultimately where they leave.
You should also use Facebook Insights and other social media analytics tools like Buffer or Hootsuite. These numbers are not always easy to interpret. Still, suppose you have the right experts helping solve them. In that case, they can provide valuable insights into what content your audience likes most on social media channels like Pinterest, Instagram, etc.
If, after a few months of doing this analysis of visits/leads/etc…you aren’t seeing any accurate results from all the time spent, then it might be time for some drastic changes.
SEO takes time, but it is worth learning how to do it well.
SEO is a long-term process. It doesn’t happen overnight, so you must be patient and keep at it. This also means that once you set up your strategies, you’ll have to keep working on them over time. But don’t worry—it’s not as hard as it seems!
Now that we’ve covered the basics of search engine optimization, let’s talk about how to do it.
The search engine optimization (SEO) strategies discussed here are just a few that can help you rank higher in organic search results. While Google’s algorithm is constantly changing and updating, these tips will help you stay ahead of the curve as long as possible. Remember that it’s important not to focus on one aspect at a time but consider all of them together when developing new content or updating your website with further information.