It seems like every year or even every six months Google decides to change things and make it more complicated to get your dental website to the top of searches.

So what’s the latest from Google?

On April 21st, 2015 Google changes their algorithm again and you will need to be prepared or your dental marketing will suffer. This link will explain what Google is doing this time around: What Google is asking of a website now

Some have already made the change to responsive sites. Some have had mobile designs done for years. The bottom line is Google is looking for you to make it easy for searchers to find your content on any device. If you haven’t they’re going to penalize your website and move it down the search rankings.

For Dentists this is a big deal. The competition in dental is higher than almost all other service categories yet online spending is near the bottom. Even if you don’t participate in Pay Per Click campaigns, mobile search, or haven’t caught on to the effectiveness of advertising on mobile apps, you will still need a responsive website.

Don’t blame Google. Google has always said they will do what’s best for the searcher not the companies trying to be found in search. That doesn’t mean they’re hiding anything. They lay out guidelines and give everyone a heads up when changes are coming. The important thing is to react to these changes and make sure you’re prepared.

So how do you know whether or not your site is responsive?

Click here to use Google’s Mobile-Friendly Tester

So what do you do if your site is not mobile friendly?

Eventually you will have to do a new website but if you really don’t want to spend the money then do a Google search of the other dental websites around you? Test them to see if they’re mobile friendly. If not you have some time but all it will take is one to own mobile searches.

The best option is to get a new site done that is responsive, not a template, has original content, and you own.

What are your options if you want to do a new site?

It would be useless to try and convert the site you have to a responsive site. It would cost almost as much as a new one and would still lack in current features. The best thing to do is to consult with people that regularly do dental websites:

Set-up a free website consultation by clicking here: Access Calendar

What should a website cost?

Obviously this is going to differ by what you want. DO NOT BUY THE CHEAPEST! The reason you’re probably having to redo your site is because you wanted to save some money. I have been to the dental trade shows and seen what is being sold. Don’t fall into this trap. Seek out a company that goes to marketing seminars, has a strong knowledge of Google and search engines, has worked with medical practices before, understands how to do a proper site map, and will give the website to you when your engagement ends. They should also know how to work with third party apps like Demandforce or Revenue Well so your website has reviews. This way you can ensure you have a site that will be successful and compliant for years.

If you’re looking to hire a company like the one I mentioned above expect to pay between $3,000 and $5,000. Price is going to vary based on the amount of customization, number of pages, images and graphics needed, and whether or not you need SEO and business listing set-up. SEO will be a huge factor in the success of your site in Google searches so make sure the company doing your site has a successful track record with SEO.

You may have built a great office but nobody will know about it if they can’t see or read your content on a mobile device. Even word of mouth from friends will generally cause someone to look at a website first. Make sure you look professional and set-up a great website.

Ben Shaver
Lead Strategist & Consultant

Ben Shaver is a dental marketing consultant for Dental Inbound. He works with practices of all sizes.

His main focus is to develop strategies that provide congruency between traditional media sources and new media platforms.

You can email him at bshaver@dentalinbound.com

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