SEO (search engine optimization) is still as important as ever for the success of your dental practice online. If you’re not familiar with the SEO basics, or you just want to brush up on the latest SEO techniques, don’t worry! We’ve got you covered.
In this blog post, we’ll be taking a look at what SEO is, why SEO is an integral part of your dental clinic’s marketing strategy, and how you can improve your website’s SEO quickly.
So, What Is SEO?
Search engine optimization (SEO) helps increase the quality and volume of website traffic by increasing the visibility of a website or specific web page to people using search engines like Google or Bing.
Website traffic from SEO is often referred to as “organic” or “natural” traffic. While SEO takes time to implement correctly, it’s incredibly important to the success of your dental surgery and we’d recommend getting on top of it ASAP!
Why Is SEO Important For Dental Practices?
SEO is an important marketing channel for any business, not just dental practices. Most people use search engines on a daily basis. In fact, 5.6 billion Google searches are made every day. That’s an incredible amount of people searching for information, products and/or services.
It doesn’t stop there either, the volume of Google searches grows by roughly 10% every year. With a good SEO strategy on your side, you can reach more people searching for dental services which will help your practice grow online and meet its goals.
3 Important Things To Remember About SEO
1. Results Don’t Happen Overnight
Unfortunately, implementing an outstanding SEO strategy for your website doesn’t mean you’ll get amazing results straight away. It’s a long-term strategy for securing the bulk of your website traffic so you have to be patient and wait for the results.
The best thing to do to help speed up your SEO strategy is to get started right away, and continually work on your website’s SEO over time. Search engines are always changing and adapting which means you’ll never truly be ‘finished’ optimizing your website.
2. There Are Different Types Of SEO
There are three different aspects of SEO: on-site, off-site, and technical.
- On-site SEO includes implementing best practice SEO techniques to your website and writing new content to make it more search engine friendly.
- Off-site SEO involves finding ways to promote your website or blog (typically through the use of backlinks) on other websites so that it can rank higher in search results.
- Technical SEO ensures search engines can crawl and index your website without any problems.
- Content is the backbone of SEO and ensure search engines understand how to index your dental practice website properly. Good content improves your visibility on search engines, great content establishes you as the expert!
In order to achieve the best SEO results, you’ll have to consider each aspect of SEO and implement a strategy for each.
3. You Should Never Take Shortcuts With Your SEO
It might sound like a good idea to take the easy way out but believe us when we say you should never take shortcuts when it comes to your SEO.
Back in the day, before Google was the complex machine it is today, you could trick it into ranking your website higher with black hat tactics such as buying backlinks.
These days, Google is incredibly smart and will penalize any website it considers to be breaking the rules which could result in the loss of valuable traffic.
Don’t negatively impact your business by cutting SEO corners!
7 Ways To Improve Your Dental Clinic’s SEO
1. Do Keyword Research
Keyword research is a valuable part of any SEO strategy. Place highly relevant keywords or phrases on your website and in your content to help people find you via search engines. The keywords you include should “speak the language” of your target audience.
Remember to only use keywords and phrases that are relevant to the dental industry and don’t ‘keyword stuff’ your content either, Google will know if you’re forcing keywords into your content.
2. Craft accurate & concise title tags
The title tag of a webpage is an HTML element that identifies the name of said webpage. It’s used by web search engines as the main clickable link on search engine results pages (SERPs).
Title tags are extremely important because they’re so visible. The title tags on your website should accurately and concisely describe why the user should click on your website.
Consider including primary keywords in the title tag and always include your clinic’s name.
3. Make The Most Of Meta Descriptions
Meta descriptions are the short paragraphs that appear under page titles on search engine results pages (SERPs).
Meta descriptions don’t directly influence your website ranking, but they do affect the click-through rate (CTR).
Meta descriptions should be about 155 characters in length to avoid being cut off early. Focus on describing your dental practice and the unique dental services you’re offering. Remember to include a call-to-action (CTA) such as “book in for an appointment today” or “learn more” at the end!
4. Add Alt Tags To Your Images
Alt tags have two important roles in SEO.
Firstly, search engines can’t read images, they can only read text. Images on websites without alt tags are essentially invisible to search engines which is a wasted opportunity.
Adding alt tags to your images helps describe what the image is about and gives search engines more information to help them rank your website.
Remember to include at least one keyword in each image alt tag.
The second benefit of alt tags is making your website more accessible to disabled people.
Blind people use page readers to navigate the internet. Using alt tags means page readers can verbally describe images to blind visitors. Make sure your alt tags clearly describe the subject of the image.
4. Install An SEO Plugin
If your website is built on WordPress, one of the quickest and easiest ways to improve your ranking is to install an SEO plugin. There are lots of SEO plugins to choose from, but only really 3 worth considering; Yoast SEO, SEOPress, and The SEO Framework.
All of these plugins offer free and premium versions.
In most situations, the free version of each plugin will get the job done, but it’s handy to get extra features with an upgrade.
While Yoast SEO is by far the most popular SEO plugin (and one of the most popular plugins of all time with over 5 million active installs) and The SEO Framework plugin performs well, here at Mediavandals, we use SEOPress because of its excellent feature list and great value premium plan.
6. Sign-Up For Google Search Console
Google Search Console is the equivalent of Google Ads for organic traffic.
By connecting your website to Google Search Console, you’ll be able to see which search terms bring traffic to your site.
You can then use this insight to identify new keywords for use in new content, optimizing existing content or building a paid search (PPC) campaign.
7. Never Stop Updating Your SEO
Always stay up to date with the ever-changing SEO landscape. Search engines change the way they deliver search results to users on a regular basis. This could be an algorithm adjustment that affects the ranking of websites, or a user interface (UI) redesign which changes the look of the search engine results page (SERP).
Stay ahead of your competitors by getting advice directly from Google via Search Console Help.
Let’s wrap this up!
Hopefully, after reading this blog post you have a better understanding of what SEO is, why it should be part of your marketing strategy, and how you can start improving your ranking right away.
If SEO is still a little daunting or you just don’t have the time to do SEO well, then get in touch with us today. We’re experts when it comes to helping dental practices just like yours get seen and heard online. We can help you develop an outstanding SEO strategy and get you noticed by the search engines quickly.
So get in touch today and we’d be more than happy to discuss our SEO services with you.