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dealing with dental practice negative reviews

How to deal with dental practice negative reviews

More more dental practices are now seeking reviews on social media, in itself this is a great thing to do as it builds trust by demonstrating social proof. However, we all know that not every single customer is always going to be perfectly happy every single time, it’s inevitable that we are going to have a negative review at some point…

But how do we deal with that? Being in the medical profession present certain problems for a dentist and dental practice when dealing with negative reviews on Facebook or Google, in this short video I will give you a simple tip on how to answer these reviews which should keep you legally safe and still answer that review.

If you would like me to send you the text of how to respond to review then please enter your e-mail address in this little form and send it to.

Google Medic Update – The Impact on Dental Practices

You may have heard about the recent Google Medic Update?

If you are wondering if this is a genuine and real update and whether you may be impacted, the answer is most definitely YES.

I monitor a variety of metrics for practices across the country, including visibility in search results, average position for a range of search terms/phrases, likely traffic from those search positions and where the practice ranks specifically.

The following image shows what many dental practices are seeing (assuming they monitor what’s going on with their website!)

Google Medic update

Traffic data from 1-8-18 to 10-9-18

As you can see, visibility, average position, traffic and overall search results pretty much fell off a cliff at the beginning of August, but why?

Why has the update been implemented?

Google doesn’t always let us know when they change their algorithm, but in this case they did:

Google search liaison

The update seems to focus primarily around CONTENT, specifically the trust, expertise and author credentials of any content.

The update has been rolled out across all search categories, not just the medical category however, due to the nature of our dental industry we seem to have been hit fairly hard.

What can you do about the update?

Because the update is about proving the trust, expertise and credentials of any author on your website these are definitely areas to focus on.

Increasing trust

I’ve been saying this for years, increasing trust is a key part of dental marketing it’s only now that it seems to be working into the world of search optimisation. Usually Google is ahead of me but in this instance it seems I’m about 10 years ahead of what Google is saying!

Consider:

  • Having structured data on your site around your testimonials. This structured data will tell Google that the content on your site is a testimonial.
  • If you have a WordPress blog, implement a plug-in which pulls in your Google reviews and displays them on your website.
  • Include multiple reviews and patient testimonials, particularly via videos linked to your YouTube channel.

Expertise and author credentials

This is one of the largest areas where I think we can make an impact. The latest Google update seems to have affected medical sites because Google has no way of knowing who has written the content.

To all intents and purposes any content on your website could be written by someone with zero dental knowledge. If you are handing out useful, free and relevant dental health advice on your website (which you should be) then you need to demonstrate to Google who the author is and what the credentials are.

With the research I’ve done around this update this seems to be one of the biggest reasons that medical sites have been impacted.

How to demonstrate your credentials

On WordPress blogs there is a users section.

WordPress user

If you open this then you will see a user profile. So long as your WordPress template supports it, if you completed the biographical information within your profile then your blog will include this information at the end of each post.

if your WordPress blog doesn’t support showing authors on each post, then you may wish to install a WordPress author plug-in.

How to tell Google who the author is of your blog

  • Register your site with Google Webmaster tools
  • Under the “search appearance” section you will see “data highlighter”, Click on ‘start highlighting’

Data highlighter in Google Webmaster tools

You can then paste in the location of your blog.

You then simply begin highlighting sections of the page, webmaster tools will then ask you what this is. Go throughout the post telling it what the title is, they published, category and importantly who the author is.

Image source :http://www.portableentrepreneur.com/google-webmaster-tools-tutorial/

Inbound link building to your profile page

Okay, so let’s assume you’ve done that… Who’s to say you aren’t lying?

The next stage is to reach out to other bloggers, dental websites and related websites… Write articles for them, give them those articles and ask them to link back to your author profile.

Google will then see the author profile on your website and also notice all of these other articles you’ve written around the Internet all linking back to your author profile.

The more you do this more you will demonstrate to Google that you are a trusted author with expertise and credentials.

Unfortunately there doesn’t seem to be a quick fix for this algorithmic update. It’s about being on top of your marketing in general, demonstrating trust, expertise and your credentials in everything you do… If you do this then your search optimisation will follow suit.

[VIDEO] Attracting traffic to your dental practice website – Part 2

I’ve just completed the monthly dental marketing club live stream on Facebook, this month we looked at the 2nd part of search optimisation and getting your dental practice website found.

The video is just under an hour long  and goes through how to optimise a website to be found on Google.

This video looks at Website Traffic Optimisation (part 2), and includes using:

Social media to attract more traffic to your site.
Email to attract more traffic to your site.
Paid advertising on Facebook and Google (PPC) to attract more traffic to your site.

Optimising for traffic is an important part of your online marketing strategy, next month we will be looking at conversion optimisation, and equally important aspect to take into account.

The dental marketing club is free to join on Facebook, the live streams happen on the 2nd Thursday of every month at 1 PM UK local time. The next live stream, looking at conversion optimisation is on Thursday 8th of February 2018.

6 Tips for Creating Dental Practice Videos

I had a client ask me this morning for some advice on having videos made for their website. I thought it would be useful to share this information with you also as videos are becoming more popular on dental practice websites.
Here are my top six tips on getting the very best from any dental videos which you decide to have produced, professionally or otherwise. The tips here will allow you to create videos which work better on your website and are found on social media and through Google searches for various treatment terms.


  1. Have a short welcome video which last a maximum of 2 minutes which plays on your homepage. It should highlight briefly who you are, why I should trust you, how you can help me and what makes you different. My personal preference is this should be a relaxed shot with you, facing the camera in a relaxed environment, probably your patient lounge. If video footage is shot with you looking to the side, in other words looking at someone other than the person watching the video, it looks less sincere in my opinion. One of the things a video should seek to do is reduce risk and increase trust, you look more trustworthy if you are looking at the camera.
  2. Create several short 30 second treatment introduction videos which can be placed at the beginning of each page on the website. Dental implants, cosmetic dentistry, orthodontics, oral health etc would all make good little videos which will introduce the treatment, help the patient to trust you and also be good for sharing on social media,YouTube and for optimising to appear in the Google search results.
  3. Ask team members to create a short 30 second introduction of themselves, have these in individual files which can put on each individual team members page. The problem if we put them all into one video is that if a team member leaves we then need to edit the whole series which could become costly. If they are individual files we can simply delete that team members page.
  4. With patient testimonials, simply ask the patient how they felt before treatment and how they feel after treatment. Ask them why they chose to come to you and how you have improved their lives. If we then have before and after photographs of these patients we can create some nice little blog posts and information updates on the website. Again, I recommend the testimonials are individual video files, this makes it better for uploading to YouTube as each individual video can be optimised for each specific treatment, smaller videos are also easier to watch and more relevant to patients with the same specific problem. Try to get patients to give testimonials that have had different treatments, perhaps straightening teeth, replacing missing teeth, cosmetic dentistry and a patient you have helped with their oral health.
  5. Write the scripts out in advance, practice them, rehearse them and allow them to flow naturally. Unless you are using professional autocue we can all see your eyes moving as you read the script!
  6. Include a call to action in the video, what do you expect the person to do once they have finished watching your exciting and engaging video clip?

There are many companies offering dental videos at the moment, if you take a look at my own dental marketing website you will see the video created for me by JSP Media.

How to get more people to visit your website

So, most of us now have heard of search engine optimisation. This is the process by which we do everything that we can to attract as many people as possible to a website.

In this blog I’m going to talk about Google as they are the biggest search engine out there at the moment, however the principles apply to any other search engine.

Search engine optimisation is one of the services that I offer dental practices, working with them to get as many people to visit their dental practice website with a view to getting as many new patients into the practice, however things are not always as simple as they seem.

The easiest way to think about optimisation is to think like a human… And I’m guessing you are one of those aren’t you?

What would make you visit a website? What would make you go to visit a particular company? What would impress you? What signs and signals would you use to gauge whether that company were worth visiting?

Most dental practices cite referrals by existing patients as the best way of attracting new patients, and indeed it often is. The reason for this is social proof as humans we like to be recommended to something because it proves to us that it is good.

Google is exactly the same, so what does Google use as social proof?

Google looks for people talking about your website and business and when it finds those people it knows that you must be important. And the way it tracks this is by looking for links, so as people are talking about you they will be creating links back to your website from wherever it is that they are discussing you.

One of my clients has a great section on their website about the development of baby teeth, I’m finding links all the time around the Internet where mothers are talking about the development of their child’s teeth in forums and on discussion boards. They will often refer back to my clients website telling other mothers to visit it because of the great information about the development of child’s teeth.

Google sees these links, and looks at them as social proof or a referral.

The old style of search engine optimisation was deposed as many links as possible all around the Internet, all pointing back to your website. However Google has got pretty wise to this technique and is now much better able to determine if those links are good quality not. For example, I could simply set up a useless blog for free and post hundreds and hundreds of links to my clients websites, indeed they would be links but I would be very poor quality links-and Google knows this.

The best quality links or referrals are ones that are naturally generated because you have posted such fantastic content. If you post excellent content that genuinely helps the visitors to your website then they will remember you (by bookmarking the page)  and go off and talk about you.

If the content you have posted is talking all about yourself and how great you are, why would anyone want to go and talk about that?

The secret to modern search engine optimisation is to generate such extremely fantastic content that people love it and then go off and talk about it on forums, blogs Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google plus and on their own websites. This is totally natural search engine optimisation and is completely perfect in its design.

Gone are the days when you can simply employ someone to create thousands of back links to your website and hope that it rises through the search engines. You need to be involved, you need to be taking photographs of cases and then talking about those cases.

You need to be explaining the dental procedures that you do, why they are useful, how they can help people and what the alternatives are.

You need to be genuinely handing out useful free and relevant health advice, this is perfect search engine optimisation and will ensure that your website raises through the rankings.

I’m not just saying all of this for fun, I followed this procedure myself and have seen traffic rise from an average of 500 hits a month to my own website to over 16,000 hits per month. This massive increase in traffic has been achieved in only three months!

Of course when you employ a search engine optimisation expert, such as myself, you are getting the knowledge that we have about how to get your fantastic content out there… And we will work with you to help you generate that fantastic content… But don’t think that employing someone and doing nothing yourself is going to work!

The new type of search engine optimisation is more personal than anything that’s gone on before and the key is to get people talking about you. So what content you have on your website that is worth talking about?