So can I stop my dental website SEO?
This is another question we’ve been asked a few times by dentists whose websites we promote in Google. Comprehensive SEO campaigns are not cheap and understandably the costs of running them get reviewed periodically, either by the practice managers or dental principals themselves.
So even where search ranking positions are excellent and the associated influx of new patients is high, it is reasonable to expect questions to see if savings are possible.
However, ramping down a successful SEO campaign is never really a good plan for the following reasons.
Google changes all the time – in its quest to deliver the most appropriate answers to user’s search queries, Google is forever adjusting the way that they determine the order in which websites appear in the search results. The so-called “algorithm” they use to evaluate this is multi-faceted and uses hundreds of different ranking signals. This changes frequently and even well-optimised websites are subject to flux within the Google results. One of our jobs as digital marketers is to try to interpret these changes and adjust our dental client’s websites and SEO accordingly. If there is no SEO programme in place, these dynamic changes cannot be assessed and responded to.
Your competitors are working on their own SEO – even if you have great search positions, you can be sure that some of your immediate competitors have their own SEO teams trying to catch and overtake you. Whilst it can be tricky to overtake a comprehensively optimised website, if the SEO is ceased, then inevitably that will happen. Whilst it might take several months to achieve this, then you’re on the back foot and trailing. So if you are ahead, the sensible play is to continue with your own campaign.
Balancing the cost with the reward
A comprehensive digital marketing programme will potentially cost hundreds of pounds per month, potentially more in extremely competitive inner-city scenarios. However, if you calculate the worth of new patients using the various “life-time value” models, it’s easy to show how even more costly SEO campaigns can easily be paid back. So it does make sense to continue, even when you’re already ahead in Google.
Similar considerations apply to those dental business owners who are two or three months into their new SEO campaigns and are struggling to see any payback, so consider quitting. This is to be expected! Since Google got tough with “quick win” SEO techniques several years ago, gaining momentum and improving ranking positions takes a lot of hard work and time, often extending to six months or more. Time-scales will vary depending on the competitive environment but you should be prepared to sit tight and wait a while for the results to show. Your SEO team should be able to show the incremental progress from their monthly reports – if you need help interpreting the data, please call the Dental Media team for free advice.
Quitting SEO whilst you’re ahead, or indeed before you’ve even got going, is not great planning for the reasons noted above. In the case where you’ve already invested a lot of money to gain SEO prominence and the steady influx of new patients resulting from it, think carefully before quitting and letting your competitors back into the hunt. For more digital marketing advice or for a free evaluation of your current SEO programmes, please call Dental Media on 01332 672548.Google+