We know what get’s practices on the map. But sometimes it can be hard for clients to understand why their listings are not ranking #1 or why their position changes. The truth is, most times it’s user error or lack of understanding that causes a client to misunderstand their local rankings. At the end of the day all that really matters is how many new patients you get every month. Not if you show up first for every search you do from any location you look from.
To debunk some myths, and explain a bit about how local search engine optimization works for dentists here are the top local ranking factors for dental offices.
City Specific Searches
So you are having trouble finding your practice when you search for a dentist from you mobile device huh? The first thing to check is if you are in the actual zipcode or immediate area of your practice. If you are, the second thing to check is if your location settings are updated, an easy way to do this on google is to scroll to the very bottom of the search result pages and check if it shows your actual current location. Sometimes your location will update in a different area, for instance,e if you looked at something on your way to work.
Your practice is much more likely to show up when you
- Search from the same zipCode
- Search using the city name your practice is in + dentist
There are exceptions to this rule. For instance, we had a client who unfortunately opened a new office in a zip code of a township, yet they wanted to rank for terms in the major city nearby. They fixated on this idea rather, even though they where already generating 50-60 new patients a month! That’s pretty incredible considering they had just opened a few months prior.
Google’s goal is to deliver the most relevant results to it’s users, and when it comes to map searches location and distance play a huge role.
Proximity from the center of a zipcode
Further expanding on the idea discussed above is the proximity from the center of a zipcode or region you are trying to rank in. The proximity of your address to the center of the region your practice is physically located in is a factor your business will have little control on. You may realize your proximity to Googles designated center of business for your industry is far away, and short of moving offices this isn’t something you can change or “game”.
Quality and Consistency of Data