How to rank a dental website
If you’re looking for more traffic to your dental website, then you need to learn how to boost your dental website’s ranking. Everyone is telling you that you need to sort out your SEO (Search Engine Optimisation), but where on Earth do you start? It seems like it’s a full-time job, and results don’t even come in straight away! So, what should you be doing, and how do you find out your website ranking and then improve it?!
Getting to that number 1 page on Google should be every business’s aim if they want to attract new clients through their website. This step-by-step guide should help you learn how to rank a dental website on Google.
Do your keyword research
The first place to start is to determine what keywords you should be trying to rank your website for. Keyword research is the cornerstone of SEO; without this stage, you will have nothing to determine your SEO strategy on!
You may already have some ideas as to what keywords you want to rank for, but you really want to target what your customers are typing into Google to find you. For example, what do dental patients search for? What questions do dental patients have about treatments? What do dental patients look for in a dental practice? What are the main queries for dental practices in your city?
But where do you find all this information? There are some fantastic free keyword research tools out there, such as Google’s very own keyword planner and Neil Patel’s UberSuggest. They provide a ton of data on each keyword, such as the search volume and how difficult it is to rank for that keyword.
Remember, just because a keyword gets a large volume of queries each month doesn’t mean you should be optimising all your content for that keyword. It could be much more difficult and, therefore, costly.
Assess your current search ranking
Once you have your keyword research data, you can then find out where your current website ranking is for all these keywords. Before you start optimising your website, it’s always good to know where you start so you can check the progress of your optimisation.
Tools like SEMrush are fantastic at providing insight into your dental website’s ranking and giving ideas for more traffic. However, it’s always a good idea to do a manual check on your rankings too. However, when checking manually, always remember to do so in “incognito mode” so that you do not receive a personalised SERP.
Diagnose and fix your technical issues
Many people assume that to rank a dental website on Google, it’s all about the content. Of course, you need a strong content marketing strategy for your dental website, but it also needs to be technically sound too.
It’s advisable to undergo a full website SEO audit, which will provide results on things like broken links which may lead to 404 errors, slow-loading pages, large images, heavy code and responsive issues. All of these technical issues let down your website, SEO-wise.
So, if you’re looking to make your dental website rank higher, the first thing to fix is the technical issues. There are several SEO software options out there for an SEO audit of your dental website, such as Sitechecker Pro, but SEMRush can also perform detailed SEO audits.
Ensure your website is mobile-friendly
Another technical job, but this one is so important. Google leaves what goes into their algorithm a secret – one that no-one knows the answer to! But they have been very vocal about how they feel about mobile-friendly websites. Simply put: if your website isn’t easily accessible on mobiles, Google won’t rank you very highly.
They’ve even devised their own mobile-friendly test to see how your website performs. Simply pop the URL to your dental website in there, and it will give you a yes/no answer as to whether it approves. If your website fails the test, there will some notes to guide you, but if you’re serious about making your dental website rank higher, you need to fix these issues as a priority.
Understand the SERPs on page 1 of Google
If you’re going to boost your dental website ranking, you need to understand what results are already on page 1 of Google. Are they blog posts, landing pages, video, infographics? Google’s job is to deliver the most relevant content to users based on their search, so they change the results all the time, depending on what users like.
It’s good to keep an eye on the SERPs on page 1 for each keyword term you’re looking to rank for, as then you can develop your dental content strategy based on these results.
Perfect your on-page SEO
Many people believe that this is the best way to increase the website ranking and traffic for dentists. Google loves the content that’s on your page, so if you ensure that it’s the best it can be, then it is indeed a great start to making your dental website rank higher.
Your on-page SEO includes elements such as the page titles, meta descriptions, h1 and h2 titles and alt image tags. All of these on-page SEO elements should contain the keywords you found in your keyword research.
Analyse your competitors
Most dental practices will know who their competitors are, but how are they doing with ranking their dental website on Google? There are some great tools out there, such as Serpstat, which can give you fantastic insight into your competitors’ dental website ranking.
What are they doing to rank on page 1 of Google? What content are they producing? Where are they getting their backlinks from? What is it about their website that Google likes better than you? By finding out all of this information, you will be able to devise a much stronger SEO strategy to help improve your dental website ranking.
Plan a content strategy
Once you’ve obtained all the information from steps 1, 5 and 7, in particular, you’re equipped with all the right information to produce a killer content strategy. By understanding the keywords that are being used to find relevant information or even competitors’ dental websites, and understanding the type of content on page 1 of Google, you can create a plan to help boost your dental website ranking.
Create quality backlinks
The important word here is quality. Backlinks are exactly how they sound – they’re links that point back to your dental website, and they’re exceptionally important to your dental website ranking.
However, there are plenty of shady dental SEO consultants out there who perform black hat SEO and create unnatural and poor-quality backlinks. These backlinks actually harm your dental website’s rankings! So, all the money you’ve paid to receive what looks like a ton of links to increase your traffic and dental website ranking will actually cause it more problems.
Track and measure your SEO results
Without tracking the progress and results, you won’t know if your SEO strategy is actually working. However, too many people focus too much on the keyword rankings of their dental website, but these can fluctuate fairly dramatically on a daily basis. It’s more important to analyse the organic traffic you’re receiving to specific pages and the leads that are generated from this traffic.
You can then determine which landing pages are performing the best and what content is working for you. By analysing this data, you can create more of the content your users like and help your dental website rank higher due to the extra traffic you will receive and the amount of time your customers will spend on your website.
Unfortunately, SEO takes time – you won’t see results happen overnight. Any dental SEO agency who does promise instant results should be treated with caution.
Quality SEO will take 6-12 months to take effect, but the rewards will be extremely beneficial. As your dental website will rank higher, you will receive a lot more organic traffic and therefore more quality leads.
How quickly you can rank your dental website on Google will depend on the keywords you found in step 1 and the level of the competition. You could aim to optimise a page on your website for a keyword with low competition, and you could see results in weeks. However, if you’re a dental website in a large city, the odds are that your competitors have already put a lot of money behind their own SEO campaign, so it may take a lot more work and time to get there.
The sooner you take action to try and improve your dental website ranking, the quicker you will see results!
Breaking down the process of an SEO campaign like this may seem very simple, but don’t let that fool you! A lot of work goes into each of these steps and most dental practices do not have the time to dedicate to all that.
Also, with some of the technical skills required to perform some of these tasks, you want someone with the experience and expertise to carry them out properly so that you do not receive a penalty from Google.
This is why, as a dental marketing consultant, I dedicate all my time into understanding what it takes to increase the website ranking and traffic for dentists so that I can provide the best service to help boost your dental website’s ranking.