How NOT to Fail on Local Search

Hi Dentists,

Abdul here. Some of you wonder, how important organic search results are. When compared with sponsored results, or inorganic search results. These are listings you can get, if you pay Google Adwords. So if I were to click over here, this would cost Aqua dental center, approximately $5-$7, this is called pay per click.  So what gets clicked on more often? So once more, these are sponsored listings. And these are organic listings that you can get here, through Search Engine Optimization. Or down here, our local search results as well. Which are incredibly important as well. Because even if someone does not click on them, the phone number is available right here, and they can dial you right away. And they know your location right away, as well. So being on local is incredible important, for any sort of local business.

So let me go into organic search results, and why they are better than, just paying for PPC. So this is the Search Engine Journal. It’s the authority for Search Engine Optimization Professionals, similar to the Wall Street Journal, except for SEO. So one of the facts that list here is that, 80% of search engine users say they always, or frequently click on natural search results. So these are organic search results. 80% of them also are saying that, they occasionally never, or rarely ever click on PPC, sponsored search results. So once again, these were the organic ones, these were the paid sponsored advertisements. Think about your own habits as well. Which one do you usually click on?  Here’s another statistic that 70-80% of users ignore paid ads, focusing on organic results. So it’s incredible important for you to be listed on the first page, of Google when someone searches for your service, in your city.

So let’s go back to one of the office managers that I was conversing with. So they are now listed on the first page, for their respective city, and their service. This is the website, they are on top of there. Right below yellow pages, for Richmond dentist, which is great. But they’re losing out, on so many potential customers right now, because they’re not to be found over here. So usually the 2 tie together. If you have a very strong ranking, on organic results. You also end up having a strong ranking, on local organic results, but it’s not the case here. So beyond a SEO ranking factors, there’s other things that you need, to worry about as well. Those are your name, address, phone number, that has been listed, on other data aggregators. On other directory, such as Yelp, Foursquare, Bing, Yellow Pages, and 50 other directories, that local businesses are probably on. Because when you list your business, some of these directories, already get your information, automatically. If this information does not correspond, with information that you have, currently on your website, you’re gonna get dinged.

Some attributes that Google finds to be valuable are. Yes your business website is properly optimized, for google local search. They also care about where your proximity is, where your location is. When compared with the user, who is searching for your service. Your business name, how relevant it is, to the keyword they are searching for. Your Google Plus page, how many reviews, you’ve got in. And what type of reviews, those are. Google recognizes that all these data points, are highly relevant, when people go out to search for a business. However, many business owners have trouble keeping this information, up to date, across all directories. So what ends up happening is, Google wants to stay relevant itself. The worst thing for them is, when someone clicks, or calls on the number listed. There’s no response, or it goes to the wrong website, or the address is wrong. When someone drives there, they find a blank address, and there’s no one to be found. So because this damages Google’s credibility, in the users eyes. Whenever I go on local search results, and if I’m clicking on something, or if I’m calling a number, and I’m not getting a response. I’m gonna say wow, local search sucks, and I’m not going to use this. So Google would hate that. What they do now, is that they penalize businesses that have an inconsistent presence across the internet.

So what we do, is when we start off working with a client that has local listing problems. Is that we start off, with an auditing process. So rather than just spray painting the job, and ignoring all the duplicate links, or irrelevant address, name, or phone information, that you might have. We have a more delicate, precise, technique, to make everything consistent, across all channels, across all citations. Across all directories that, you are currently listed in. Because what a lot of businesses do is, oh I’m not listed over here. What I have to do, is just get more citations, and then they pay some SEO guy. And he just ends up building 20, 30, 50 more citations, and that ends up creating additional citations, additional duplicates, and Google doesn’t like that. Because they tend to like a single citation, per business location. It’s like if you see multiple listings, for one business on Yelp, or any other channel. You lose interest for that link, because it will appear spammy to you.  Or if the phone number and address are incorrect, in different citations. You’ll be like, man I’m not really sure if these guys are legit or not. They seem to be all over the place. So you may get lost, when trying to find the business. Similarly, Google tends to devalue your links, and place less emphasis on your website. If you have multiple listings, with incorrect information.

You want to be clean with no duplicates. Have a single citation per directory, with matching information. So what we do is an audit, to see what other sites know about your business currently. This is pretty tricky, as we have to figure out, where your business exist, even when Google may not know, where it exist. But hopefully they’ve indexed it. What we actually do is, quite extensive. We look at 100 different local websites, and we do deep queries on this, and for your business. Specifically your business name, even though that might be a little bit generic, sometimes. So we query your business name, phone number, your address, across hundreds of different directories. We’ll do a few different permutations which can help us, find all the digital footprint that you may have. That’s where we usually find duplicates. Then we take into consideration, which of your citations is the primary one, and once we figure this out, we eliminate the other ones.

If there are dozens of directories where, you have duplicate listings per location. We go out and contact them. Sometimes we have to contact companies like Yahoo, and talk to them about the duplicate listing, that is currently occurring. This is a process, on which we spend a lot of time, to make sure that we’ve got everything correct.  Because this really drives, your local search listings. Once you have this strong foundation, you will start by getting listed here, and you’ll start getting a lot of calls. So feel free to email me, if you have any questions about this at all. This is definitely something that we can do for you. You can’t afford to miss this opportunity, of having organic local results, for your business.