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Posted May 24, 2018

In 2009, I founded DelMain Analytics, a full-service online marketing agency focused on helping small businesses turn their website visitors into new customers, clients, patients, and leads.

Since then, we’ve helped dental practices all over the country optimize their websites, improve their search rankings, and grow their practices.

When it comes to dental marketing mistakes, we’ve seen them all. Why are these mistakes common among dental practices?

  • Competition is fierce among dental practices and everyone is looking to get ahead.
  • Results don’t happen overnight. Successful dental marketing and SEO requires a long-term commitment and realistic expectations.
  • Dental SEO requires research, planning, execution, and adjustment. Dentists (and their office staff) are simply too busy to carve out the time SEO demands and often look for shortcuts.

In today’s post, we’ll talk about 9 of the most common SEO mistakes dentists make, and how to avoid them.

  1. Choosing the Wrong Keywords & Keyword Stuffing

Imagine you want to bake a cake. You can follow the instructions in a recipe exactly, mixing, stirring, and baking for just the right amount of time. But if you start with the wrong ingredients, there’s no way your cake will come out like you hoped it would.

Use the wrong keywords and you’ll never get the traffic and results you want.

The wrong keywords are…

  • Too generic or too broad
  • Not actually being searched for by potential patients
  • Not focused on the local area you want to draw patients from

Visit our dentist office to see dentists who can help with your dental problems and provide the dentistry services you need. Experienced dentists are ready to help at our dental practice.

I’ll admit most examples of keyword stuffing aren’t as egregious as this (made-up) example. But keyword stuffing is one of the biggest marketing mistakes dental practices make.

Search engines like Google use dozens of factors when deciding which sites should rank for which keywords. They also look out for the “tricks” people use to fool them– like keyword stuffing. How can you avoid keyword stuffing?

Write naturally and for a human audience. Are you using keywords in places you otherwise wouldn’t in an attempt to appeal to search engines? If so, you’re putting all of your other SEO efforts at risk.

  1. Duplicating Website Content

If you were reading a book, would you want to read the same chapter over and over written slightly differently each time? At best it’d be boring and more likely it’d just be frustrating.

Search engines are the same way. When Google (or Bing, Yahoo, etc.) visits your website to determine how well it should be ranked for the keywords you’ve optimized for, it wants to see unique and useful content on every page of your practice’s website.

What’s the opposite of unique and useful?

  • Content you’ve copied and pasted from another site like Wikipedia
  • Content you’ve repeated on other pages of your site without making any significant changes
  • Content an SEO agency has used on several other dental websites and now lives on yours

How can you tell if your site is suffering from duplicate content?

Copyscape and Siteliner are great! Try running your practice’s site through those tools and see what pops up. By eliminating duplicate content you can quickly improve your site’s search rankings.

If a dental SEO agency created your website:

  1. Copy a paragraph of text from your page on fillings
  2. Put quote marks around it and search for it on Google.

If you’re seeing other dental websites using that exact same language, your site is being penalized for having duplicate content and your Google search rankings are suffering.

  1. Forgetting About Local Search (Google Maps)

Ranking well on Google Maps (also known as local search) is a key to helping new patients discover your dental practice. Even today, too many practices completely overlook the power of local search rankings!

When optimizing your practice’s local search presence, make sure you’re:

  • Consistent with your business’s name, address, and phone number. Don’t confuse Google by using different contact information in different places around the web.
  • Encouraging satisfied patients to leave positive reviews on Google, Yelp, and other review sites.

If you’re new to local search optimization, read our article on how to get your practice listed on Google Maps.

  1. Relying on Outdated SEO Strategies

SEO changes fast. Google and other search engines just keep getting smarter. Did you know over 50% of web traffic today comes from mobile devices. Your practice’s online marketing and SEO strategy needs to keep up with how potential patients access the internet and what search engines are looking for.

Whether you’re reading blogs, watching videos, or evaluating dental SEO agencies, you might get overwhelmed by different opinions and strategies. How do you know who to trust?

Read our article on how to evaluate SEO agencies to find out.

  1. Not Tracking Results

There’s one piece of the dental marketing puzzle you just can’t overlook: tracking results.

How can you tell if your marketing campaigns are working? What keywords and landing pages are driving new visitors to your website? Are your keyword rankings improving? Are you keeping up with competing dental practices in your area? What strategies aren’t paying off the way you’d hoped? If something’s not working, what can you do differently?

When tracking results we rely on tools like:

  • Google Analytics – The gold standard for tracking and analyzing web traffic
  • CallRail – A great tool for tracking the source of phone calls to your practice