The Dental SEO Expert Advice Dentists Need

When people search for a product on their mobile phones, 18% of those searches result in a sale somewhere on that very day.

Fifty percent of people who use their smartphones for a local search will visit a store that day. The same is true of 34% of users who search locally on their tablets or computers.

So if it weren’t already obvious, it should be clear that search engine optimization (SEO) matters if you want to succeed in business.

Yet many entrepreneurs do not realize the importance of SEO or are not maximizing their use of it. This is especially true of those in a line of business that might surprise you—the dental industry.

Here is what dental marketers need to know about using SEO to its fullest potential.

Why Is SEO for the Dental Industry Tough?

Dental SEO expert Justin Morgan explains that there are several reasons why it’s hard for dentists in particular to be found online.

First, dentists tend not to be savvy about how they go about SEO. They don’t invest in the process or go to a dental SEO expert and learn the ins and outs of how it works.

Morgan says that, instead, dentists “typically use the ‘pay and pray’ model of SEO, which involves choosing the company that looks most legit for the lowest price possible.”

The reality is that it’s highly beneficial for companies to outsource their SEO needs and find a reputable company to help them. Dentists who become proficient in understanding how SEO can benefit their practices see a dramatic rise in their success compared to dentists who take a more apathetic attitude.

Those who stand out online have determined to find and pay for the best SEO service available and so have a higher commitment to helping their patients.

Search Engines Love Strong Content

But one of the most important reasons why SEO can be so difficult for dentists is that “dentists’ websites rarely have useful, engaging content that supports what bloggers, journalists and editors are conveying.”

Visual content, and video in particular, is the type of content that research shows users enjoy the most. Google and other search engines will like you using video because it demonstrates you are offering information that is compelling and relevant.

Further complicating the SEO woes of dentists is the fact that they are not likely to have relationships with online publishers. Not only do dentists typically not have linkable posts but they also don’t know anyone who would link to them if they did.

However, as your dental practice routinely puts out content that is pertinent and useful, your site will become a trusted source of information. So an obvious strategy is for you to include a blog on your website that has helpful content for site visitors.

Make sure you design your blog in a way that interests the people who visit your website. Write about topics that will remain relevant over time, write catchy titles and, of course, include visuals.

Here is an example of practical, evergreen content that a dentist could include on his or her blog.

Getting Started

Depending on your budget, you might decide to tackle SEO yourself instead of hiring an outside agency. But even if you do decide to hire a dental SEO expert, you should still educate yourself on what SEO requires.

One reason why self-education is so important is that you want to make sure the SEO company you hire has ethical link building tactics. To someone ignorant about the nature of SEO, the way a company goes about getting links might seem beneficial. But if Google has a problem with that company’s strategies, it could penalize your content, devastating your business.

For those just getting started in SEO, digital strategist Marcus Miller has compiled a thorough list of basics starting steps, some of which we’ll outline here.

Begin by reading Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. Other additional, useful resources are Moz Beginners Guide to SEO, The Art of SEO, and Eric Ward’s Ultimate Guide to Link Building.

Next you should register with Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools. Both will help you to improve your website in the long run.

Google My Business and Other Directories

It is crucial that you list your company on Google My Business. Doing so is free, and the site has a domain authority of 100, which is extremely high. You want to have a credible online presence? Here is a prime opportunity to boost your likelihood of getting found, and it doesn’t cost you a thing.

Keep in mind as well that if you don’t claim your business on this platform, you’re leaving an opportunity wide open for someone else to do so.

If another person claims your business instead of you, at best that means users will find someone else’s information when they search your company. At worst, it means that this person could destroy your reputation.

Be thorough, polished, and accurate when you fill in your information on Google My Business.

In addition to claiming your spot on Google My Business, you should research local directories. Do what you can to get your site listed on them. Online databases fuel mobile search. If you are listed in databases and directories, when people search for you on their smartphones, they will be more likely to find you.

Being listed in such directories means claiming your spot on major search engines, social media sites, yellow pages sites, business directories, and any community relevant to your industry.

Keyword Research

A major aspect of SEO is keyword research. To do your own keyword research, put yourself in the position of your customers. If you needed to find a dentist in your area and were going to Google to search for one, what terms would you enter?

What about if you had a specific problem? What phrases would you search in that case? Start by simply searching these keywords in Google, paying attention to the search suggestions Google offers as you do so.

Don’t forget to brainstorm long-tail keywords, which can be highly valuable even though people search for them less often. Use these useful resources to find keyword phrases relevant to your business:
  • Google Keyword Planner
  • Moz
  • Ubersuggest Keyword Tool
Be as thorough as you can when brainstorming, and then organize your keywords into categories. You can use these later to re-evaluate the structure and navigation of your website. As your list grows, it’s wise to organize the keywords into groups based on topics such as geography, search volume, and business value.

Note what type of content appears in the results for the keywords for which you desire to rank. Then ask yourself, are you creating similar content that targets those terms? If not, you might want to make some changes.

Once you have spent some significant time on keyword research, you can use the information you’ve found to optimize your website.

Don’t Ignore Something All Companies Need

SEO is important for all businesses. It’s just that it’s easier for those in the dental industry to neglect it than it is for people in other fields.

If you’re wondering how to increase the number of people your practice helps, consult a dental SEO expert today.

Choices in How to SEO a Multilingual Site

While growing businesses by expanding to additional countries or languages is a great way to increase your income, it is more complicated than you may realize – especially when it comes to SEO.

This site for a southern California criminal defense attorney has content written in English using Google Translate to create pages translated into Spanish. Notice the choice in the top right corner for English – Espanol. Click on the buttons and you’ll see that the pages change between English and Spanish.

In this example, a separate site is not needed because both languages are targeted at ranking in the U.S. If this attorney had a second location in Spain, then ideally he would have a separate domain registered with a country code TLD and hosted in Spain. With locations in two countries, the easiest way to rank is on separate domains.

How much effort is the company willing to invest in ranking in separate countries? Will you register a country specific domain for each language or use languages in directories?

More expense and work is involved with separate domains:
  • Building additional sites
  • Paying to host multiple sites
  • Renewing multiple domains
Even international sites as large as Wikipedia do not necessarily use separate domains. If you look at Wikipedia.org you will see that when you click on a country you are taken to a subdomain that uses the country code as the name of the subdomain. For example:
  • es.wikipedia.org for Spanish
  • de.wikipedia.org for German
  • it.wikipedia.org for Italian
These subdomains use the same letters as country-code domains for Spain (es), Germany (de) and Italy (it), but they use en for English rather than us for U.S. or uk for the U.K.

Read How to do Multilingual SEO for WordPress Sites to get a better idea of your choices. The WordPress multilingual plugin available on that site makes translating and doing SEO for multiple languages much simpler.

How Search Engines Recognize Languages

While search engines can detect languages, it is best to use the <html lang=”xx”> tag to indicate the language a page is in. For more details, read Multilingual Sites and Search Engines: Part 1.

According to that post, “global corporations as a rule have separate sites (and most often separate domains) for the countries they operate in.” While that is the most effective method, it does require more work to create and maintain.

SEOChat Supermod GabrielG suggests you can even “get sophisticated and detect a user’s language, geolocation, or other characteristics and serve the appropriate language site, in case Gooogle doesn’t do that automatically.”

Duplicate Content on Multinational Websites

If the languages involved are totally different (English and German, for example), there is no duplicate content issue. Having the same content on pages written in languages that are closely related – such as UK English versus US English – would definitely create a duplicate content issue.

Use Plagiarism Check to verify that all your site content is unique and original:

Plagiarism check

See the Brick Marketing post Duplicate Content on Multinational Websites for more details about duplicate content. Nick Stamoulis wrote:

“If your site takes a massive hit in visitors and rankings for at least three months (enough time to call it a trend), your site might have been flagged for duplicate content.”

Why Machine Translation is NOT Good Enough

While using Google translation or some other machine translator is the least expensive way to go, these translations are very inaccurate and sometimes impossible to even understand. While there are translation plugins, do not use them unless you just cannot afford a human translator.

Do not sully your brand’s reputation by skimping on content in additional languages. Using human translators is a must. If you do not have someone within your company capable of accurately writing in the language, contract with a company that specializes in language translations for business.

Keep in mind that being able to speak a language does not guarantee a person can write well in it anymore than assuming that everyone who speaks English can become a paid writer or editor.

If you use machine translation, you will end up with major brand reputation issues. See this infographic from Understanding and Avoiding Communication Blunders.

Poor translation communication blunders

Hopefully you now understand why machine translation can never take the place of using the best human translators who are excellent at both translation and content development.

The goal is to SEO a multilingual site so that it will rank in each location. For that, separate sites are best, but even with one site your goal should still be to rank each page if at all possible.

Content Marketing is Changing SEO: 3 Tips to Boost Your Traffic

Content marketing is the future of marketing and there is no doubt about it. By leveraging content you can sell (your products and services) without actually selling.Write a killer blog post or tweet and you can create a huge amount of awareness among your targeted audience. Content marketing has become an integral part of all marketing strategies and is set to become a $313 billion industry by 2019, according to PQ Media’s ‘Global Content Marketing – Forecast 2015-19.’One question that many marketers still ask is whether content marketing and SEO are inter-related or two different branches of marketing? The answer is that they go hand-in-hand and are the two sides of the same coin. In fact, SEO creates demand and content marketing fulfils it. For instance, when a person asks, ‘how to fix my electric oven?’ it means the user demands content that will help him solve his problem. Content marketers targeting people facing problems with electric ovens can create high-quality content and try solving their problems.For success with SEO, you need loads of high-quality links, which are impossible to gain without high-quality content. It is, therefore, clear that SEO and content marketing can’t exist without each other.How can you use content marketing to boost organic traffic for your website? Here are three tips to help you:

1. Research and Target Relevant Keywords

In order to get a constant flow of traffic, you first need to identify your specific niche and target audience. For instance, if you offer project management software, then your target audience will be online marketers who need to use project management software to stay in control of their projects. Further, you need to determine whether you want to target budding online marketers or seasoned marketers or both.Once you have identified your audience, you can determine the keywords they may use to find useful information. Here is how you can do this:
  • Use a keyword research tool to get keyword ideas.
  • Choose the most relevant keywords and segment them according to your targeted audience.
  • Research about the keywords to determine whether or not its popularity will grow with time.
A comprehensive SEO experts tool suite such as SEMrush is ideal for this purpose. It gives you a set of related keywords and trends.Picture4-2Once you have a list of the most relevant keywords, you can use them and start creating content. Make sure the content is high-quality and helps your target audience solve specific problems. In simple words, the content you create must offer value to your readers. If you readers find your content useful, they will return and also recommend your content to others in their network.

2. Leverage Visual Content to Maximize Traffic

When it comes to boosting traffic, you need to leverage the traffic that is most engaged. Research proves that video is the most engaging type of content, and marketers are using it to capture users’ attention.According to a research by HubSpot, video appears to be the most favored form of content by customers and prospects.Moreover, according to KPCB, video will account for 74 percent of all the online traffic in 2017. Again, brands that use video for marketing see their revenue growing 49 percent faster compared to those who do not use videos. So, there is every reason why content marketers should leverage this form of content.Videos also help with SEO. Including video sends signals to search engines that the page contains rich media relevant to the search requests. The transcript part of the video that uses keywords improves the findability of the content. By hosting videos on YouTube, the second largest search engine in terms of the number of search queries, you can easily boost the traffic on your website. You can also share the videos on social media to increase the website traffic.Take the example of Dunkin Donuts that relies on video campaigns to sell its products. The brand took advantage of Valentine’s Day and rolled out a live streaming video. The video showed how the brand creates its new products. As a bonus, the video also featured the creation of a gigantic, donut-themed wedding cake. The video attracted more than 36,000 viewers.To increase traffic for your brand and attract attention, you can create how-to videos, DIY videos, product-explainer videos, and animated videos.

3. Become a Trusted Source of Information

Becoming a trusted source of high-quality and useful information is one of the best ways to increase traffic. Pages that offer useful and relevant content and have high demand among readers are ranked higher on the SERPs (search engine result pages). Sites that have lots of high-quality content focused on a particular subject tend to rank higher.(Tip: If you have a broad audience and cover multiple topics, make sure the content is organized based on topics or themes to avoid content silos.)One of the easiest ways to establish authority in a specific niche is by starting a blog. Blogging helps you create a base for your content marketing efforts. However, blogging requires a lot of investment in terms of time and effort. But when done properly, you can reap long-term benefits. Here are a few tips on increasing traffic by blogging:
  • Use a blog design that appeals to your target audience. Starting a WordPress blog is often a great idea as WordPress offers a number of inbuilt themes that can be used to create a professional blog. You can also integrate other themes, if needed.
  • Create a catchy title for your posts to attract attention quickly. Keep the titles short, use numbers within the title or use words that invoke emotions. Make sure the post offers exactly what the title says.
  • Choose evergreen topics to keep the posts relevant for a long time.
  • Include visuals to improve the level of engagement and offer a better experience.
  • Repurpose posts to increase viewership. Turn posts into short videos, podcasts, infographics, etc. and share on various channels.
Another way of increasing traffic is through influencer marketing. Identify the top influencers in your niche and request them to contribute on your blog. This way, you will not only get high-quality content for your blog, you will also attract high-quality backlinks and get the attention of all the users from the influencer’s network. The trust factor also increases manifold, so you can establish yourself and your brand as a trusted source of information.Take the example of Stonyfield Farms that specializes in organic dairy products. The company blog features a barnyard theme that is absolutely relevant to their brand and the target audience (which includes farming, families and organic living).2017-06-21_17-10-43 The blog features articles on healthy living and pictures of healthy families. They also feature videos, which are not professionally edited, but are helpful. In fact, this is their USP and it humanizes the videos. They also use soft sales messages to encourage their readers to buy their products.ConclusionAs content marketing keeps maturing, so does SEO. There is no way you can win at content marketing without focusing on SEO and vice versa. Both go hand-in-hand, so you need to be good at content marketing as well as SEO to take your business to the next level. Do keep the above tips in mind when creating a strategy to increase organic traffic to your website. By leveraging the above tips, you can improve awareness, build trust and increase the traffic, and you will be a winner in every way!