Whether you have just joined the online ranks, or your practice has been online for a while, there’s always room for improvement in your SEO optimization strategy. The “internet of things” is constantly evolving. Search engines tend to follow the internet user and what they’re looking for. In some cases, that could be a dentist. So how do you show up to viewers looking for dental services in your area? Read on to find out.
1. Claim your Google + local business page
Google, Bing, and Yahoo all offer small business owners a way to create, claim, and/or verify their business online. These pages are considered local business pages, even though each search engine calls them something slightly different, and they offer your business the opportunity to show up in search results. For example, John Doe moved two years ago, and never found a new dentist. Today, his tooth begins to hurt, and he starts looking for a dentist in his area. What does he search?
- “dentist near me”
- “dentist in dallas”
- “find dentist”
What do all three searches have in common? The search results will most likely list dentists near the location of John’s query. Local business pages are just the beginning when it comes to implementing your presence online and optimizing it. By creating/claiming and verifying your business for each search engine, you’re increasing your probability of showing up in search results for user queries like John’s.
2. Claim your Yelp page and manage your reputation
Most search engines consider Yelp high priority. Business owners, however, tend to shy away from Yelp because one negative review can affect the reputation of a business for months on end. However, the vast number of users who leave reviews online use Yelp, and can help your business gain local notoriety. Here’s an image of the internet search “dentist in Dallas”:
When you claim your free listing on Yelp, you can complete your profile and manage your reputation directly on their site, responding to reviews as you see fit. Also, if you fancy to work with Yelp’s advertising, you can gain more information from their local newsletter.
3. Optimize your site for local keywords
Your website is the hub of your online presence. Therefore, you want to be sure that the keywords local viewers are using are on your website. This increases your chance to be found when someone searches using those terms. For example, “teeth whitening hurts my teeth” could be a long-tail keyword used by a handful of users in Dallas, TX. Why does this matter? If you’re a dentist in Dallas, you can optimize your service page and write blog posts using this keyword phrase to eventually rank organically. The goal is to show up to those who search using that phrase, and offer them information, answers, and solutions to their problems. You’re building trust with the user, to eventually convert them into a patient.
4. Check local listings and directories for your NAP consistency
In addition to your Google, Bing, and Yahoo local business pages, you need to consider other local directories that disseminate your information across the internet. These listing sites and directories also share information with one another. So, in addition to search engines validating the authority of your online business via your listings, the various listing and directory sites are confirming with one another that your business is legit.
Search for anywhere your business is listed online, and correct any inconsistencies in your NAP (name, address, and phone number). Then submit your information to sites or directories that are advantageous to your business and ranked as high priority by search engines. Finally, periodically check your listings to ensure everything remains consistent.
It’s not too late to start optimizing!
Your online presence is more than a website and a blog. It’s an entire collection of local, organic, and on-site optimization working to convert viewers into patients. It’s a trust building effort. You are building trust with your viewers, so when they need your services, they call you and not your competitor.