Four short weeks ago, on August 7, Google rolled out its new “Local Pack,” dramatically changing how search results are displayed for dentists.
This is how the first page used to look for a searcher looking for a local dentist:
Mixed in with the general search results they would display what we would call a seven-pack of results that were keyed to a map on the upper right-hand corner of the page. We’ve highlighted this seven-pack in green. Then they displayed a link at the bottom of this seven-pack which offered “Map results for Chester VA dentist.” The inclination of most searchers was, if they didn’t see something they liked right in front of them, they would scroll down the page.
Since August 7, this same type of search gives a result that looks like this:
This new local pack, which we have highlighted again in green, is now moved to the top of the page, just under the paid ads. It is made more prominent. There are only three practices displayed in this pack. And now the link to the map results plainly says, “More dentist.” All of this makes people much more likely, if they are looking for a dentist and want to investigate more than what they see, to click on “More dentist.” In fact, we have been conducting research since this came out and have learned that 86% of searchers will now click on “More dentist” rather than scrolling down the page to see more results.
What This Means for You
Local search, or what is also called maps search, has now become even more important. To get the most visibility, you now need not just a strong website but a strong Google Maps presence. If you rank even as high as #5 on the first page in Google, 86% of searchers aren’t even going to see you—they will click through to the maps results.
Fortunately, at Infinity Dental Web we are prepared for this. We have been offering maps optimization services for our clients ever since Google business listings were introduced in 2010, and have invested quite a bit of time and training into developing our expertise in this local search. In fact, the writers at Search Engine News have called Infinity Dental Web the leader in local search for the dental industry.
If your visibility has been adversely impacted by this Google change, please let us know and we’ll be happy to discuss what we would recommend for you.
Introducing Heather King
On August 1, our long-time social media director Danielle Azar moved to wetter—and presumably greener—pastures in Portland, Oregon. While Danielle remains a member of our team as a social media writer, we recently hired Heather King as our new Social Media Director. We thought you might want to get to know her.
Let’s start with the obligatory background question. What did you do before joining Infinity Dental Web?
I spent the past year as the communications manager for a global fortune 500. While there, our team restructured the face of our corporate communications, shifting from an email-based strategy to a blog-based strategy on our employee intranet. Interesting timing because, I was commenting the other night about how blogging about health savings accounts (HSAs), changes to company phone policies, commencement ceremonies, and cyber-security threats in the workplace elevated my writing in a way that no other position could have.
Prior to that, I’ve spent the majority of my career in marketing roles for small- to mid-size nonprofit organizations in which I wore many hats including marketing, communications, public relations, and development. I led digital initiatives including content and email marketing, social media, blogs, and SEM for several of these businesses, and in some cases launched their social media efforts.
What do you have in store for our clients?
I love Danielle’s creativity. My approach, though, is going to be different. I have a little more serious personality, and I’d like to give a more professional tone to the image we’re portraying for our clients. Social media audiences are getting more sophisticated. Where we used to garner engagement with funny memes or cartoons, we now want to engage in relationship-building strategies. Moving forward you’ll see us share more of the dentist’s persona along with the practice’s overall brand including products and services offered in a way that sparks conversations.
Who inspires you?
In social media we call these “influencers,” or the individuals doing social better than anyone else. I follow everyone from Amy Porterfield to Jeff Bullas, Mari Smith to Kim Garst. As a self-proclaimed news junkie I’m inspired every day by the body of work Arianna Huffington has put together. And, most importantly, my mother and grandmother are my heroes—no two other people could have better shaped who I am as a human, woman, professional, and friend.
In 1981, Olivia Newton-John encouraged the world to get physical (what ever happened to leotards and headbands?). In 2015, we’re encouraging you to get social.
Starting in September, we’re rolling out our new #ShowMeYourSmile campaign. This practice-based social campaign drives engagement, increases the visibility of your practice, and strengthens your online reputation.
We know effective social media campaigns begin in the office. We also know that you’re busy performing amazing feats of dentistry and may not always have the opportunity to pause for a selfie.
As an Infinity Dental Web social media client you’re automatically enrolled in the #ShowMeYourSmile campaign. This means that each month we’ll send you #ShowMeYourSmile flyers and marketing materials that encourage patients to take photos and videos in your office and then post those on your social media channels along with comments and reviews—think flat Stanley. #ShowMeYourSmile flyers feature fun sayings like “Let the Floss Be with You” and “I Got 99 Problems, But a Cavity Ain’t One.”
Keep an eye out—the #ShowMeYourSmile campaign materials will arrive in your office in the near future.