3 Dental Website Myths Debunked

All of these statements are false, but dentists tell me that they’ve heard these things from a trusted expert.

  1. Flash in my dental site design will lower my SEO rankings.
  2. There is no reason to put my blog on a separate domain from my website.
  3. Keyword research can tell me how many people visit my website.

Want to know the real truth? The best way to know if someone is on the up-and-up is to ask for proof. Go ahead! Ask for the research or resource that backs up what you’re being told. Here’s what we know to be true about these three myths…

Flash in my dental site design will lower my SEO rankings. No it won’t.
Anyone who tells you this is uneducated on the subject. If an experienced web designer who keeps up with Internet marketing trends builds your dental site, he can use Flash animations in such a way that they will not interfere with search engine optimization. All-Flash websites are virtually invisible to Google if they aren’t built properly. However, Flash elements can be integrated into a well optimized dental website without harming rankings.

This myth originates from the fact that splash pages, all-Flash pages that precede the meat of a website, are not readable by Google.

There is no reason to put my blog on a separate domain from my website. Yes there is.
If you have multiple domains with excellent, well optimized content that appeals to potential patients and Google’s spiders, you have the opportunity to show up multiple times on page one of Google for various keyword phrases. One of our clients has a dental website and two blogs (microsites on certain dental procedures), and their domains appear five, six, and seven times on page one for some coveted keyword phrases. All Google wants is great content. Google’s success comes from making good information easily accessible. Provide unique, good information on multiple websites, and you’ll rank higher more often.

This myth originates from the fact that in the past, Google looked to domains’ servers to determine if websites were hosted on the same server. This could indicate they were run by the same company or person. Now Google knows, sometimes companies and people who provide excellent information have more than one website!

Keyword research can tell me how many people visit my website. No it can’t.
Different symptoms require different tests because they’re associated with different diseases. A general way of stating this is, if you’re looking for the reason behind certain results, you must run tests to find that specific information. The same is true of research for Internet marketing. We must look at applicable data to answer certain questions.

Initial keyword research tells us which keywords are most popular on Internet searches. This is very general information. Determining which keywords and keyword phrases will yield the highest traffic is a game of hypothesizing. Choices should be made based on data from a reliable keyword tool and an assessment of your practice’s offerings, target market, and location. This type of keyword research provides a good starting point for building a website or writing blogs.

Ongoing keyword research, as it pertains to a certain domain, can tell us which keywords led people to your domain and how often each keyword resulted in a web visitor. This type of keyword research is done after a site or blog has been up for awhile. It shows your successes and failures so that your strategy can be focused toward more consistent successes.

Traffic statistics are a completely different set of data from keyword research. If you want to know how many visitors your website has, where the visitors live, how long they stay on your website, which of your website pages are most popular, and which page visitors tend to leave your site from, you need traffic data.

This myth originates with miscommunication. A website company may purposefully or inadvertently confuse a client by talking about reporting and research as it relates to creating, then adjusting, an Internet marketing strategy. Without visual aids and a lengthy explanation, understanding the details of various web reports can be hard to grasp. A dentist should look to averages to gauge success, rather than dwelling on details. Your patient wants his crown to look good, feel good, and last. He does not need to know what type of crown you placed, the brand of cement you used, or the details of the procedure. Instead, he’ll look to the results to gauge success. Likewise, you can analyze how a website performs over time to gauge success. Also, be sure to implement a system in your front office to track where new patients came from.

How do I know that what I’m telling you here is true? Experience. Research. Trial and error. In my years of working with dentists on Internet marketing, I’ve seen Google evolve. I’ve also witnessed search engine optimization go from a guessing game to an intricate system of analyzing performance and implementing hypotheses again and again. Dental marketing has come so far from the days when a doctor could buy a Yellow Page ad, hang out his shingle, and stay busy. Today, particularly in our faltering economy, the SEO race is more significant and difficult than ever.

If you want help with your dental site, blog, or SEO strategy, call Modern Dental Practice Marketing at 972-781-8861 and talk with Jill. Or you can email your questions to [email protected].