SEO Guides for Dentists
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5 Overlooked Dental Practice Growth Strategies You Need To Know In 2023Episode 166
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What Is Local SEO for Dentists?
Local SEO for dentists stands for “local search engine optimization,” which refers to optimizing your online presence to attract more customers from your area. This is especially important for businesses that rely on local customers, such as dental offices.
When potential clients search for a dentist in your area, they are most likely to use an online search engine like Google. SEO marketing ensures that your dental office appears at the top of the search results when someone in your area is looking for dental services.
All kinds of dentists can benefit from SEO if done right. These include:
- Cosmetic dentists
- Pediatric dentists
- Oral and maxillofacial surgeons
- Emergency dentists
Why Is Local Search Engine Optimization Important for Dentists?
Research shows that 97% of consumers go online to find local businesses, and 86% rely on Google Maps to identify a business’s physical location. If your dental practice has a strong online presence, particularly through a Google Business Profile (GBP), it can induce interest from this vast pool of potential patients.
Additionally, local SEO dental marketing is a cost-effective tool to help your dental office distinguish itself from its competitors. By strategically optimizing your GBP and other areas for local search, you can significantly grow more traffic, attract more potential patients, and subsequently grow your practice.
How to Improve Your Local SEO Traffic
1. Claim Your Google Business Profile (GBP) Listing
GMB or now called GBP is a free Google tool that allows businesses to manage their digital presence across Google’s platforms, such as Search and Maps. It helps you manage the information displayed when individuals search for your dental office.
Ensure to provide accurate details including your business name, physical address, phone number, and website. Uploading high-resolution photographs of your premises and personnel will further enhance your listing’s appeal. This leaves a positive first impression on prospective dental patients.
Here’s a step-by-step guide:
- Claim and Verify Your Google My Business: Go to business.google.com/create, type in your business name, and follow the instructions to claim your business. You’ll need to verify the ownership of your Google My Business property.
- Complete Your Profile: Fill out all the necessary details about your practice, including your address, operating hours, and contact information. Be consistent with your info.
- Accurate Location: Make sure your location is accurate as it helps patients find your clinic easily.
- Add Photos: Upload photos of your dental office. This includes interior and exterior shots, images of your staff, and even before-and-after pictures of patients (with their permission).
- Use the Insights Dashboard: GMB tools include unique analytics, the Insights dashboard, which can give you valuable information about how patients are interacting with your listing.
- Create Posts: The “Create post” screen will allow you to add photos, text, events, and a button to your post. It’s a great way to engage with potential patients.
- Add Attributes: The Attributes section of your GMB listing allows you to let patients know what amenities you have.
- Encourage Reviews: Encourage your patients to leave reviews on your GMB profile. Positive reviews can help attract new patients.
2. Optimize Your Website for Local Keywords
Relevant keywords are essential in local dental SEO campaigns. They provide search engines like Google with crucial information about your dental website’s content, connecting it to relevant user queries.
If you run a dental office, frequent local keywords might include “dentist near me” or “dental office in [city name].” Incorporating these relevant terms in your website’s content, including page titles, meta descriptions, and headers, can significantly enhance your online visibility.
However, be conscious to not overuse them as excessive keyword usage could incur a penalty from search engines, ultimately resulting in lower search ranking factors.
3. Create Quality Content Aimed at Individuals in Your Area
Creating high-quality content targeting individuals in your local area is crucial for successful local dental SEO. This means creating blog posts, videos, and other content relevant to the services you offer and the needs of potential patients in your community.
For example, if your dental office offers Invisalign treatments, you could create a dental blog post titled “Why Invisalign is the Best Teeth-Straightening Option for Busy New Yorkers.” This type of content targets a specific service and incorporates target keywords to improve local SEO.
Additionally, creating informative and engaging content can position your dental practice as an authoritative source in the community, increasing trust and credibility with potential patients.
4. Utilize Online Directories
Online directories, like Yelp and Healthgrades, offer a critical tool for enhancing your local SEO efforts. Although Healthgrades can be categorized as a national directory listing, its effect on local SEO shouldn’t be trivialized. These online platforms give potential patients an avenue to discover your dental business, especially when seeking particular services in their area. Therefore, it’s essential to claim your listing on these directories.
Maintain uniformity of your contact details, such as your business name, address, phone number, and website, across all platforms to avoid confusion for potential patients and to improve your online prominence.
Here are some of the top online directories for dentists in the U.S. based on the search results:
- Dentist Directory: This directory connects patients directly with the dentist’s office for a dental appointment.
- eLocal Dentists: A directory with a high domain authority score, focused on U.S. listings.
- Wellness Directory: An online directory that includes wellness professionals, including dentists.
- Doctor: A directory that covers a wide range of medical professionals, including dentists.
- DentalPlans.com: This directory includes dental plans and allows for dentist searches.
- Ace Dental Education: A directory listing educational resources and dental practices.
- topDentists: This directory allows users to search over 22,000 top dentists, including family dentists and kids’ dentists.
- EveryDentist.com: A dentist directory that allows you to search by specialty and location.
- Tupalo.com: A general business directory that includes dentist listings.
- Streetdirectory.com: Another general business directory with dentist listings.
- Ratemds.com: A directory that allows patients to rate their medical professionals, including dentists.
- Aapd.org: The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry’s directory of pediatric dentists.
- USA Dentists: This directory includes dentist web pages for every State in the USA plus Washington, DC.
5. Encourage Online Reviews From Patients
Customer reviews can have a significant impact on your local SEO. The more positive reviews you have, the higher your search ranking. Encourage your patients to leave reviews on various platforms like Google My Business, Yelp, and Facebook.
Ensure to engage with these reviews by responding promptly and professionally to positive and negative feedback. This shows that you value patient satisfaction and care about their experiences.
6. Use Social Media
More and more people now are using social media to find, engage, and make decisions about businesses. Since local SEO is all about improving your business’s online visibility, maintaining active social media platforms can significantly improve your practice’s chances of being found by potential patients.
This could be on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or even LinkedIn.
Here are some tips on how to do this:
- Engage With Your Audience: Respond to comments and messages on your social media platforms to establish a personal connection with potential patients. Even negative comments can be turned positive by handling them professionally and promptly.
- Promote Your Content: Share blog posts, videos, or any other type of content on social media to drive traffic to your dental site. This helps with SEO as well. For example, a blog post titled “5 Tips for Maintaining Good Oral Hygiene at Home” can be shared on social media with a link to your website, targeting keywords like “oral hygiene” and “dental tips.”
- Run Local Ads: Social media platforms offer the option to run targeted ads to reach prospective patients in your area. Utilize this feature to increase your online presence and attract more local patients.
- Collaborate With Influencers: Partnering with social media influencers in your area can help increase your brand’s visibility and credibility, ultimately attracting new patients.
- Use Hashtags. Hashtags are a great way to reach a larger audience on social media platforms. Research popular local hashtags and incorporate them into your posts to increase visibility. For example, if you’re a dentist in New York City, you could use hashtags like #NYCdentist or #dentalcareNYC.
7. Use Citations Correctly
Citations in local SEO refer to any online mention of the name, address, and phone number (NAP) of your business. They can occur on local business directories, websites, social platforms, or apps and are important in improving local search engine rankings.
Citations help potential customers discover your business and can also impact your local search engine rankings. They are considered a ranking factor for local SEO because having your business listed in trusted online directories sends signals to search engines like Google about the legitimacy of your business. That’s why consistency is critical in citations.
Remember, any discrepancies in the information can lead to confusion and may negatively impact a business’s local SEO. So, you must ensure your information is accurate and consistent across all platforms.
8. Utilize Email Marketing
Email marketing is another powerful tool to improve your local dental SEO efforts. You can use email marketing to reach potential patients and keep current patients engaged.
Here are some ways you can utilize email marketing for local dental SEO:
- Send Newsletters: Share updates about your practice, promotions, or new services through a monthly newsletter. This keeps your patients informed and also helps with brand awareness.
- Offer Exclusive Deals: Use email marketing to offer exclusive deals or discounts for individuals in your local area. This can attract new patients and foster patient loyalty. For example, you could discount teeth whitening services to individuals in your city.
- Include a Call-to-Action (CTA): You can include a CTA in your emails, encouraging recipients to leave a review on your Google My Business listing or follow you on social media.
- Personalize Emails: Use email marketing services that allow for personalization, such as addressing recipients by name. This creates a more personalized and engaging experience for potential patients. For instance, you could send emails with subject lines like “Hey [Name], Don’t Miss Out on Our Latest Dental Offers!”
- Segment Your Email List: Segmenting your email list based on location can help you tailor your content and offers specifically to individuals in your local area. This makes the emails more relevant and increases the chances of conversion.
9. Monitor Your Progress and Results and Adapt
It is essential to regularly review and monitor your local dental SEO efforts to determine what strategies are working and what needs improvement. This can be done through tools like Google Analytics, which provides data on website traffic, bounce rates, and other metrics.
Based on the results, you can adapt your strategies accordingly. For example, if your Facebook account is not generating much traffic to your website, you can focus on other platforms like Instagram or adjust your content strategy.
Staying flexible and continuously analyzing the results of your local dental SEO efforts is crucial for long-term success. As search engine algorithms continue to evolve, you must adapt and stay updated with the latest trends to maintain a strong online presence and attract new patients to your practice.
10. Consider Working With Professional Dental SEO Companies
If you’re struggling with improving your local dental SEO efforts, consider working with professional dental SEO companies. These companies have the expertise and resources to help you optimize your website for local search results, improve your online presence, and attract more potential patients.
Some services these companies may offer include keyword research, on-page optimization, local business listing management, review monitoring and management, and link building.
Here are the benefits of working with an experienced SEO agency:
- Expertise and Knowledge: SEO companies have a team of experts who are well-versed in local SEO strategies and best practices. They can help you identify the most effective tactics for your dental practice and implement them.
- Time-Saving: As a busy dental professional, it may be challenging to find time to work on your local SEO efforts. Outsourcing this task to a dental SEO company can free up your time and allow you to focus on providing quality patient care.
- Customized Strategies: Each dental practice is unique, and so are their local SEO needs. A professional dental SEO company can create a customized strategy tailored specifically to your practice and location.
- Measurable Results: Dental SEO companies utilize various tools to track and measure the success of your local SEO efforts. This lets you see tangible results and make informed decisions for future marketing strategies.
Grow Your Dental Practice Through Local SEO With Simple Impact Media
Local SEO is a valuable and cost-effective tool for dental practices seeking to attract more local patients. Claim your Google My Business listing, optimize for local keywords, take advantage of online directories, and earn glowing reviews from satisfied patients. In short, keep your office from falling behind in the digital world.
To elevate your local dental SEO efforts, consider hiring an experienced dental SEO agency. At Simple Impact Media, we offer SEO services specifically tailored to dental practices. Our team will work with you to develop a customized strategy that aligns with your business’s goals and helps you attract more patients to your practice.
How We Get Results With Web Design For Dentists
We don’t consider ourselves just a dental SEO company. We get results because we go beyond providing cookie-cutter search engine optimization services and dive deeply into the inter-workings of your business. We look at everything from your patient acquisition tactics to your customer service and retention strategy for your dental patients, and we pinpoint growth opportunities along the way. Then, we create a strategy that will address those growth opportunities, and keep track of progress with in-depth reporting that tells you exactly what’s working and what isn’t in terms of dental web design, online marketing for dentists, and internet marketing for dentists.
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