SEO Steps to Become a Top Google Maps Dentist
Now that your Google Business Profile is claimed, it’s time to turn up the heat so you can raise your ranking on the map pack. Maybe it wasn’t as important to show up here in the past, but when 80% of searches are done via mobile, it’s essential to show up on the top of the screen. Follow these steps to become a top Google maps dentist.
Beef up your Google Business Profile
First, work on your Google Business Profile.
- Make sure your full practice name is listed. This may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s easy to start going by variations of your practice name. Make sure your full and correct name is listed.
- Correct any incorrect information. If you need to correct something, make sure you do. If you are closed for a holiday week, update your profile to reflect that closure.
- Write out your full address without abbreviations like “Rd.” and “Cir.”
- Use your actual number, not a tracking or toll-free number.
- Be as detailed as possible. If there is information that you can fill out, fill it out!
- Use high-quality photos of your business, doctors, and employees.
- Use high-quality photos of your “products,” like Invisalign trays and sleep appliances.
- Update your profile weekly as you do social media. You can even use the same posts! Try using a social media scheduler like the Online Practice Center to post to all your social media accounts and Google Business Profile at once.
Manage Your Online Reputation
Managing your online reputation is a must to become a Google maps dentist. Your reputation online is just as important as your social reputation because:
- People look at reviews before choosing a service provider—especially when the service is as intimate as dentistry.
- Google wants to give searchers the best information. If you aren’t managing your reputation, Google will know and not show your profile to those needing a dentist.
Do these three things to manage your online reputation:
- Respond to positive reviews. Remember how we said to treat your Google Business Profile like social media? Respond to those reviews to be social with your patients. Responding to reviews shows patients and Google that you’re actively trying to better your practice.
- Respond to negative reviews. We know that sometimes it’s hard to be professional and cordial when you get a negative review that just doesn’t seem fair. The best thing you can do in this situation is to respond. Your response shows Google, again, that you’re actively trying to improve. It also shows others looking at the reviews that you are empathetic and will solve problems if they arise. Think of your response as damage control for the next person who reads your reviews. Learn how to respond to negative reviews here.
- Get more reviews. The more reviews you have, the more popular you seem, and the more Google will see you as a trustworthy and experienced dentist (and raise your listing). While you don’t want to buy reviews, asking for them when the patient is in your office is okay. We advise dentists to ask for reviews in person before the appointment is over. Some practices we work with also have a QR code on a business card or a small poster in the office. Alternatively, you can send patients a text or email when they leave to ask for a review. You can manage all three of these tips through the Online Practice Center.
Manage Your Citations on Other Websites
This one is vital for becoming a Google maps dentist. Did you know that other websites, maybe some that you’ve never seen before or haven’t made a profile on, make profiles for you? Yep. It’s not ideal. But websites like Yelp, Healthgrades, Vitals, ZocDoc, Yellow Pages, and Bing can create profiles for you and may have incorrect information. What’s worse is that anyone can request to change that information. If you haven’t claimed your profile, those requests will be granted, and you could end up with a profile that doesn’t reflect your practice.
You may say, “yeah, but people don’t look at those websites.” First, you’d be wrong. Second, Google considers profiles like that when it decides how trustworthy you are—a significant factor in showing up on the map pack.
Clean up your citations on these websites, so they have your correct address, phone number, website, practice name, and hours. Make sure you check back on it periodically, too, because things can magically change. Consistent information across the Internet will raise your listing on the map pack and help other SEO efforts.
Improve Local SEO
Improving your local SEO means letting Google know, without a doubt, that you are located where you say you are. So when someone is looking for a TMD dentist and is physically in your area, your practice will show up near the top. Become a Google maps dentist and improve your local SEO by:
- Getting your website linked from another local business’s website. This could be a local Chamber of Commerce, your local news site, or even a charity for which you donate or sponsor events.
- Make your location prominent in website headers and titles. Using your location as a webpage header, “Denver Cosmetic Dentistry,” for example, will help Google understand that you are located in Denver.
- Write unique content geared toward your area. For example, you could write a blog that mentions other businesses in the area.