Category: Author: David Hall
I was browsing the website of a competitor. It looks like this company is targeting the lower end of the market, trying to get websites into the hands of dentists for the lowest price possible. Nothing wrong with that. That is a useful function, and our company is working on products to undercut their prices.
What bugs me, though, is how they attempt to sell their SEO services. I don’t know if they just don’t know any better, or if they’re trying to snow the dentist. I titled this post “Dental SEO Scams.” I don’t know that this company is scamming anybody, but there are SEO people who do, and these are some of the tools that can fool the unwary dentist.
Here’s what happened. There’s a link on their home page to “Dental SEO Case Studies”. Click that link, and it takes you to a page where they have two case studies. The first one I would be inclined to put in the category of “not knowing any better.” Here’s the text:
“Dr. S***, a B*** dentist and is a new customer as of this post but we’ve had such substantial results in only 9 days that we just had to share. Dr. S***’s website was first indexed by Google on January 16th, 2010. Just 9 days later, on January 25th, 2010, we saw the following results.”
There follows a chart that is like so many other charts we see. Warning – do not accept data like this from your SEO company. Do not accept a list of where you rank for various search terms. Always insist on getting data on how many times people have actually visited your website as a result of various search terms. The chart simply lists various search terms and gives the Google ranking for that term. Here’s the chart:
Under the chart is the following text:
“The primary search term we selected for Dr. S***’s site was “B*** Family Dentist”. After only 9 days he is already on the first page of Google, in spot #6, and in spot #3 for bing.com.”
What they don’t tell you is that “Bellaire Family Dentist” is an extremely non-competitive search term. When we check it with the Google keywords tool, Google gives no measureable traffic for that search term. Which may be why the website’s traffic is so low. When I checked Dr. Stirneman’s website’s Alexa traffic rank, it came in today is over 13,000,000, which may translate to somewhere between 15 and 100 visits per month. Though that is just a guess, as we don’t have any websites we manage with traffic rankings that low. Not anywhere close to that low. Our performance level websites, our lowest level, come in with rankings in the 2 to 3 million range, which comes to about 500 to 800 visits per month.
Below that is another case study, Dr. G***. Some might call this a snow job. That term is a little strong, but there are definitely some things that you find out when you look further into this case that are contrary to what it is made to appear.
Here’s their bragging text:
“Dr. G*** is a C*** Children’s dentist who was one of our first customers, and a few months ago, asked us to help him improve his performance on Google. After turning on our Dental SEO Software and making a few minor tweeks [sic], we waited for our changes to take effect. The results can be seen below, and speak for themselves: Dr. G*** is dominating pretty much every search term possible for his area.”
Below that is a chart listing him as #1 and #2 for a number of search terms:
I thought I’d check this out more. I looked at his website. This one is even worse than the S*** website. It has no Alexa traffic ranking. North East, it turns out, is the name of a town in Maryland between Baltimore and Wilmington, Delaware. It has a population of 2733 or 700 families.
Now think about this. If you lived in North East, Maryland, would you really have any inclination to search for a dentist on the Internet? Or would you just look down the street and see who’s there?
If we were doing SEO for this dentist, we would as a bare minimum have optimized him for the nearby town of Elkton, which has a population of just under 15,000. If he had any ambition at all, we would have encouraged him to try to attract business from nearby Baltimore. He is only 30 miles outside of Baltimore, and could probably successfully attract families from the Baltimore metro area who are looking for an intimate and sincere country practice.
Links: See the page in our website on dental search engine optimization.