A few years ago, a dentist who owns a popular practice in Denver called me to ask for help. His site had tons of bad backlinks – a common problem at the time – and his SEO team didn’t catch it. They were charging well over $1000 a month and could not find out why his website went from page one, position one for “Denver dentist” to lost in cyberspace.
He found the bad backlink issue. My team resolved it for him.
Yesterday, that client’s site suddenly fell from existence in search results, and he called me. He asked where the heck it went. Embarrassed, I had to admit that I didn’t know, so I started pouring through data. I stopped everything and personally stepped neck-deep into the data. Why? Because my client pays me for great service, so I darn sure better provide it. I was taken off guard to hear that his site fell from page one because GoDaddy showed that it was still holding strong. We couldn’t replicate GoDaddy’s report with hard evidence, though. And if we can’t find the site on Google? His prospective patients probably can’t, either.
Good news, though: quicker than you can say John Henry, the site was back on page one and showing up third on the Google Maps/Business listing. It had been position 4 on Google Business all along. One small tweak sent it back to the first 3 results, so it showed up on page one in maps. Some 404/301 issues (not errors) were keeping it from page one organic. Fixed and fixed. Whew!
My client had some concerns that were great points.
- Why didn’t I know it fell off Google, when it had been on page one for years?
- Why did it happen?
- How can we make sure it never happens again?
All valid questions, to which there are answers that I’ll give you in my blog posts over the next week.
Today, however, I want to answer the question he asked me just before our call ended. He asked for the top three things he and his team could be doing to help support his online marketing efforts.
Another great question! Perhaps the best question of all.
Why I’m the One with Answers
Who am I to answer any of his questions? Well, I’ve owned a dental marketing agency for over a decade. The first one I sold to my business partner. The second one is Identiwrite Creative, which I now oversee. Before owning agencies, I was copywriter with a focus on medical and dental writing for the Internet. Through my career in this niche, I’ve learned a thing or two about online marketing for dentists. I’ve also seen many changes.
Back to the doctor’s question… the best things you can do to help your practice get new patients from online marketing.
While my team and I sort through data from Google Business, Analytics, Search Console, and third-party companies and plugins, there are a key things you can do in your office right now to help boost your online presence. By presence, I mean your website rank and traffic will increase, which translates to more people visiting your properties (website and social pages) and as a result, you’ll get more calls from prospective patients. That is the number-one goal, right?
Here are the top three things you can do to help your web rank and traffic. You ready? It’s all about being authentic — something I can’t do for you.
Post on social media.
My team comes up with some witty posts, and they get shared. However, our posts will never match the popularity of those that come from YOU — the team and doctor. If your team goes to a local restaurant, let’s say Papa Joe’s, for lunch, take a picture and put it on the practice’s social media pages, particularly Facebook and Instagram. Share it with the server and manager. Tag everyone on the team, as well as the server and manager. In your posts, ask who else loves Papa Joe’s salsa. Get friendly online! It’s not unprofessional. It’s how independent business owners get more social media traffic. (Get seen, get patients.)
Keep your website up to date.
Your site’s About page must be kept up to date. Purge old employees and add new ones (or ask us to do it for you). But there’s more to keeping the site fresh. New sofa in the lobby? Change the photos on your site. Did your gardener plant petunias along your front walk? Update your pictures. Not only on your website, but also on Google Business. Your site should morph all the time, changing as your practice changes. Both text and images need to be constantly updated so that your website accurately reflects your office. If you put this responsibility on an office manager or assistant, she can coordinate with us monthly so that the job never becomes overwhelming.
Blog about local news and events.
This is also something that my team can help you with, but you must initiate it. We don’t know when new soccer fields are installed beside your town’s rec center. We don’t know when your hometown’s debate team wins the state championship. We don’t know when the pool opens, what the farmer’s market hours are, or your personal favorite walking trail. So tell us. Send us photos. We can write the blogs and social posts, but you need to send us the local info that we aren’t privy to.
The rest of the work will be done my team.
If you need help with online marketing; if you need an agency to do all the heavy lifting so that you and your team can cater to patients; if what you’ve been doing isn’t working, then call me. I’m Shauna Duty of Identiwrite Creative, 940-395-5115.