A Blog for Dentists & Other Healthcare Professionals

How Can I Improve My Local Search Engine Rankings?

Posted by Tyson Downs on 12/2/13 6:25 AM

Follow These Steps to Improve Your Google My Business Rankings

This is a queston I get quite often. Everybody wants more visibility and more patients.

Formerly known as Google Places,  and then Google+ Local, Google My Business is just as important to your business rankings as ever, if not even more so now than before.

Google My Businesss is the place where people come to find local businesses, review them, rank them and share information about them. Essentially, it's the modern day yellow pages mixed up with a town squareand gossip referral service and if you're not on it, you might as well be invisible.

Of course, even when you're on Google My Business it can almost seem like you're invisible if you're not doing the right things. Here are a few tips that will help you improve your Google+ Local rankings so that your business can get more visibility and potentially more profits.

And if you are looking to improve your dental SEO results, this article is a must read.

Simple Ways to Improve your Google My Business Rankings

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Before you do anything else, read the Google Places Quality Guidelines. In order to get good dentist SEO results, you have to know what Google wants and expects when it comes to these listings. Not following the guidelines can get your listing suspended, deleted, penalized, etc. I've seen businesses innocently violating the guidelines and as a result have their listing with 10+ reviews deleted, and there is nothing they can do to get it back.

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1. Completely Fill Out and Claim Your Google My Business Listing.

When working on your local seo for dentists, you need to be sure that you hit this out of the ballpark. Include every last bit of information that you can, especially your full contact information, and a good description that softly sells your services and helps you stand out from the crowd. It is recommended to not mention your business name, and main keywords in the description as you have already added them to your listing (in the business name field and the category field). By not mentioning these in the description, you make sure you trip any spam filters that Google has, which can really hurt your rankings.

 

The more fields you leave blank, the less you are able to tell Google what it is that you do and as a result, the worse your rankings will end up being. Upload pictures of your business and even some of your products. If you have any videos, upload those too.

Assuming you have been 'merged' and are utilizing the new Google Dashboard, then your listing can have a cover photo (making sure it is the proper dimensions to display – 2120 X 1192) and a profile image (250 X 250 dimensions) that represent your business in a professional manner. Remember, these are the images that customers and potential leads are going to see, so make sure they reflect you and your business in the light you wish to be portrayed.

Check out some examples of profile images that look professional and properly portray a brand:

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dentist seo google places cover

When you have the information filled out, be sure to fill the description field with some keywords that your site is optimized for. This will help link the two together in the indexing, further raising both rankings. When you have this completed, verify your listing with Google (you have to click to verify it and then choose the method you wish to use for verification).

2. Advanced Tips for Improving Your Google My Business Rankings

Of course, those are just the basics. There are many other things that you can do to further improve upon your current rankings in Google My Business, such as:

Local-Search

  • Use consistent NAP (name/address/phone number). I think Google and other websites can figure out that 'Drive' and 'Dr' are the same in an address, but better to be safe than sorry. This goes not only for Google My Business, but everywhere that your NAP appears online. This will help search engines make the connection between the sites better, thus further legitimizing your standings and increasing your search rank positioning.
  • Leverage local information and place them inside of your actual website along with links. This includes local landmarks, street names, nearby restaurants, etc. Anything that is geo-centric will help Google pinpoint your business and recommend it to people in the nearby vicinity as they perform local or mobile searches.

3. The Importance of Reviews on Google My Business

One of the most important aspects of improving your Google My Business click through rates involves getting customer and client reviews onto your listing. Not only can the number of reviews impact your rankings within the Google My Business results, but reviews are really what can help you stand out from the competition. Remember, getting reviews is extremely important, and potential customers are using Google + Local and other websites to research your company. If you don't have reviews, it can actually hurt your business.

bigstock-Recommended-blue-grunge-stampTo get your customers to leave reviews, go to https://plus.google.com/local and type your business's name, city and state into the search bar. Copy the link to your listing and use it as an anchor text in your emails, online correspondences and even in your website. Simply ask your customers and clients to click on the link and then click on Write a Review. You can also have buttons on your website that link to your Google My Buinsess page, directly to the review portion.

These are just a few of the things that you need to do to have a successful Google My Business listing. There are so many things that many people don’t know about that can effect your Google My Business ranking result, that it can be overwhelming. If you want this taken off your plate, and work with a professional that has ranked dozens of dentists, doctors, and other competitive fields on page 1 for their Google My Business listings, then let’s talk, I may be able to do the same for you. This will allow you to focus on what you do best—running your business.

Titan Web Agency excels at helping doctors increase their online presence through a strategic approach that includes creating an awesome doctor website, and performing online marketing including SEO for dentists, SEO for doctors and more.

 

Topics: Local SEO

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