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Your dental practice prides itself on effective treatment and excellent patient care rather than digital marketing practices such as SEO.

However, every dental practice needs new patients to thrive, which is why you need to know about dental SEO.

This guide can help give you a better understanding of SEO for dentists.

What is SEO?

SEO, or Search Engine Optimisation, is the process of improving the ranking of your website on search engines such as Google or Bing.

SEO is a complex process that involves over 200 different ranking factors, some of which we will get to below:

Why is SEO important for your dental practice?

If you’ve ever been curious about how to climb higher in search engine rankings like those of Google and Bing, implementing a dental SEO strategy is your best bet for reaching those objectives. Enhancing your SEO is a proven method for increasing organic web traffic and attracting more patients to your dental clinic.

Securing the top position on a search engine results page (SERP) is a goal for every business. Dental SEO can assist your practice in achieving this without the need for ad spending or resorting to pay-per-click (PPC) strategies.

Thus, when a prospective patient searches for “dental practices near me” or similar queries, it’s your SEO strategy that elevates your website’s relevance over your competitors and improves your ranking.

seo services cornwall

Would you believe that over 25% of users click on the number 1 search result? The click-through-rate drops massively for every step away from top spot you are, whilst page 2 rankings barely receive any clicks.

Optimising your site will help your dental practice be more competitive and rank higher on search results.

Local SEO for Dentists

Another very important thing to consider for dental practics is local SEO. Local SEO is the process of optimising a site to appear for searches related to the local area – vital for dentists looking to attract more local patients.

For example, important keywords could be:

  • ‘Dentists in Cornwall’
  • ‘Dentists in the South West’
  • ‘Emergency Dentist near Exeter’
  • ‘Dentist near Me’
  • ‘Dentist Accepting Patients’

Local SEO is an inbound marketing technique that helps drive traffic to your website. Instead of using intrusive methods to generate leads, patients near your practice find you out because they’re interested in your services. The result is better quality leads and higher conversion rates.

53% of all website traffic is driven by organic or un-paid search. And the greater the flow of traffic to your site, the more opportunities to convince new patients to book for their next check-up.

What Factors Determine how a Dental Practice Ranks in Search Results?

The main difference in the type of ranking factor is whether it relates to on-site or off-site, the differences can be seen below:

On-site ranking factors refer to the information Google and other search engines gather from your website.

These factors include who you are, the services you provide, whether you’re trustworthy or an authority in your field, what questions you answer for patients and more.

It’s worth remembering that this isn’t a one-off process, and your website is constantly being crawled for on-site ranking factors.

dentist seo

Off-site ranking factors include what others think about your website. In terms of dental SEO, the most significant single factor is the number of other websites that refer to your practice or link back to it.

So when a potential patient types “dental practices near me” into a search engine, Google will assess on-site and off-site ranking factors and use them to determine:

  • The results a search engine shows
  • The type of results a search engine shows, including websites, blogs, reviews and dental directories
  • The ranking order of those results

5 Top Tips – SEO for Dental Practices

SEO is essential for building credibility and trust in your practice. Patients trust the top 3 search engine results to be the best. But how do you reach these top positions? Here are our 5 top tips:

1. Targeting keywords

A good SEO strategy is based on optimising relevant keywords throughout your website. Start by researching keywords for the most important pages of your website, thinking about the services you offer, your location and your client base.

Here are a few ideas for keywords for dental practices:

  • Affordable
  • Teeth Whitening Services
  • Dental Hygienist
  • Tooth Extraction
  • Experienced Dental Surgeon
  • Trusted Dentist

Ensuring keywords such as these are included on your site means your site will be more likely to rank well. You will need to include these terms on your site meta info such as page titles.

To edit your meta info and page titles, you’ll need to be able to access your website’s content management system (CMS).

Popular website platform like Shopify and WordPress have simple meta title and description fields for you to add the keywords in, meaning no coding is required!

2. Gain Positive Patient Reviews

Patient reviews are an excellent way to show Google that your dental practice is trustworthy and an authority in its field. Building feedback is an under-utilised strategy that can demonstrate you’re a dentist to trust.

Develop a strategy for generating reviews and following up on your feedback. Getting reviews on your Google My Business page will mean they show up on Google Maps – a vital tool for anyone looking for a local service such as dentistry!

3. Make sure Technical SEO is on Point

Technical SEO establishes a foundation to boost a website’s visibility to search engines. It encompasses optimizations made to improve a site’s crawling and indexing by search engines like Google and Bing.

Each website is distinct, ranging from intricate projects to those requiring fundamental SEO enhancements. There’s always room for improvement on your site.

  • Site structure
  • Site speed
  • Broken links (404s)
  • Image alt tags
  • Site localisation
  • Canonical tags
  • Structured data such as review snippets

You can tackle technical SEO in several ways. The best course of action is a professional SEO auditing service that can uncover and fix any underlying issues. There are lots of Free SEO analysis tools out there, but without an expert to decipher the results it may all be difficult to decipher!

4. Create Relevant, Useful Content

Previously, search engines primarily concentrated on the quantity of keywords present on a page. However, their algorithms have evolved to be more advanced, now favoring content that is not only rich in keywords but also of high quality.

So, how can you produce excellent content for your site?

Prospective patients will be attracted to unique content that addresses their dental concerns.

Your content should aim to offer value to your patients rather than serve as a promotional tool for your business. For instance, you might consider blogging about common dental procedures and issues, or providing FAQs that answer frequent questions regarding dental treatments and your practice.

  • How to get rid of bad breath?
  • What food and drinks cause my teeth to get stained?
  • When can dental braces be removed?
  • How to prevent gum disease
  • Is an electric or manual toothbrush better for removing plaque?
  • How do you clean dentures?

By being helpful and answering common questions, your website will pick up more traffic and thus have more authority with search engines.

Finally, don’t forget your call to action so potential clients can get in touch – they will be more interested if you’ve helped them with a useful guide already!

5. Scale your SEO with link building

Link-building is vital for off-site SEO, with backlinks from authoratitive websites helping to both increase traffic and your search engine rankings.

High-quality backlinks can have a significant impact on your ranking, and there are a number of content marketing techniques that can be used to achieve these.

Some popular ones include:

  • Guest blogging – writing a blog for another site in exchange for a link;
  • Dental directories – obtaining a link on a site that lists dentists and other local businesses
  • Digital PR – where you distribute a good news story via local online media.
backlinks SEO

How About PPC For Dentists?

While SEO may require a considerable amount of time before yielding visible outcomes, PPC (Pay-Per-Click) Advertising can generate immediate website traffic.

Typically, paid advertisements occupy the top 3-4 positions on search engine results pages, positioned above the organic search results.

For service-oriented businesses like dental practices, this offers an excellent opportunity to quickly attract traffic for essential target keywords.

An additional advantage of using Adwords for dentists is the ability to restrict your advertisements to your specific town or city, ensuring you only reach local individuals who are more probable to turn into your clients.

Of course, you will need to pay Google for the clicks, as well as a paid search agency for the cost to set up and maintain the account.

google adwords

Confused by SEO for Dentists? Search Hog Can Help

We hope this brief guide to dental SEO has given you a better understanding and appreciation of its importance for your business. However, understanding SEO is very different to knowing how to implement an effective SEO strategy for your dental practice.

By letting a professional SEO consultant deal with every aspect of your website SEO, you’re free to concentrate on what you do best – running a successful practice and delivering exceptional patient care.

If you would like any queries about SEO for builders, please get in touch with Search Hog today. We can help improve your website visibility online and attract more customers to book construction projects with you!

Matthew Pavli

Matthew Pavli is the founder of Search Hog and resident SEO expert. When he's not geeking out on Google algorithm changes, he can be found surfing at one of his local beaches in Cornwall.

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