When it comes to dental marketing, many practices want to get better rankings on search results. The difficult part is knowing exactly who they can trust and hire to get the job done – correctly. And in today’s day and age, there’s much more to search engine optimization for dentists than what meets the eye.
To have a good foundation, dental SEO requires white-hat SEO techniques that will help dentists achieve long-lasting, measurable results. However, many white-hat SEO techniques do take longer and more time to implement and see results.
Many black-hat SEO techniques and companies may appease the world’s need of instant gratification, but it could be setting the practice up for short-term success and long-term failure. In fact, if you’re caught doing black-hat SEO techniques, your website could get banned from search results all together!
To avoid getting yourself unknowingly in trouble by hiring the wrong dental SEO provider, here are the top black-hat SEO techniques that you will want to look out for and avoid:
1. Private blog networks. Building a lot of backlinks (links on other websites that point back to your dental website) can be a very positive and strong SEO technique – when done correctly. However, a black-hat version of building more backlinks is participating in a private blog network (PBN). Participating in a PBN is a risky practice and it is expensive to join. Plus, it’s incredibly difficult to grow and maintain this strategy.
To avoid joining a company that makes you participate in a PBN – either knowingly or unknowingly – make sure to ask them if they participate in a PBN. If the answer is “yes” ask if they will share a list of links that they create for your website.
2. Resurrecting expired domains with high authority. Sometimes, a company will look for websites that have expired, but have a high domain authority and strong link profiles. Once they buy the domain, they’ll rehost the website and republish how the website was previously. This isn’t a good tactic because Google now automatically resets a website’s page rank when the domain expires.
Ask your agency to share the list of links they have built. If a link looks suspicious, go to waybackmachine.com and insert the URL there.
3. Keyword stuffing. It’s important to have keywords throughout the copy of your website that you want to be found for (e.g. cosmetic dentist in Chicago). However, there’s a fine line between being relevant and simply keyword stuffing. Instead of focusing on keyword density within a page, write relevant and timely articles and content pages that have search terms patients are most likely to use.
Ask your website provider to provide examples of pages they have optimized on other websites and ensure it doesn’t sound like keywords are being “forced” into the paragraphs.
4. Avoid paid links. Buying backlinks to your website goes against Google’s webmaster guidelines. This means if you’re caught, Google will destroy your rankings overnight. According to bloggers passion, “if you still buy or sell any links then make sure that the links contain the rel=”nofollow” attribute. It tells search engine that you are using for advertising purpose only and not for page ranking.”
Ask your website provider if they plan to buy backlinks to your website. If their answer is “yes” you may want to consider this a red flag and look elsewhere.
Want to learn more about hiring the right SEO provider for your dental practice? Click here to read the top questions to ask when hiring a professional dental SEO company like ProSites to help you rank higher and get found by new patients online.