4 Reasons Dentists Should Avoid Blackhat SEO

(Blackhat SEO is unethical, Blackhat SEO will not continue to work, Blackhat SEO can ruin your dental practice the day it stops working and blackhat SEO  is not necessary for dentists.)

What Is Blackhat SEO?

Black hat SEO includes a number of controversial Search Engine Optimization methods used to get higher web page search engine rankings. Black Hat SEO is often described as a search engine algorithm gaming technique.
Essentially, Google and the other search engines have rules websites must follow.  If a website follows all the rules they are considered ‘white hat’.  If a website breaks some rules on purpose, they might be considered ‘gray hat’.  If a website flagrantly breaks the rules in order to game the system, the website is considered to be ‘black hat’ and is subject to penalty and removal from the search results.

What are Google’s Rules?  Webmaster Guidelines 

Below are some examples of Black Hat SEO techniques Google dislikes…
Automatically generated content
Participating in link schemes
Creating pages with little or no original content
Cloaking Sneaky redirects Hidden text or links
Doorway pages Scraped content
Participating in affiliate programs without adding sufficient value
Loading pages with irrelevant keywords
Creating pages with malicious behavior, such as phishing or installing viruses, trojans, or other badware Abusing rich snippets markup
Sending automated queries to Google
Bogus Link Building Campaigns (Private Blog Networks – PBNs) 

Why Does Google Hate Black Hat SEO? 

There is one reason why Google earned the right to be the #1 search engine on the planet.  There is one reason Google earns billions of dollars every year.  The reason why Google is so successful is that they consistently deliver relevant, high-quality search results for users.
Blackhat SEO allows a crappy dentist with a crappy dental website to show up on page one of Google results.  That’s great for the crappy dentist but pretty soon searchers will abandon Google if they don’t get the best, most relevant results. Google will not stand for that!

What Is A PBN? (Private Blog Network) 

A common technique to quickly rank dental websites is the use PBNs.  According to Lion Zeal http://lionzeal.com/  (a purveyor of PBNs) “A Private Blog Network (PBN) is a network of authoritative websites used to build links to your money website(s) for the purpose of ranking higher in the Google search engine.
A money website is the website you intend on ranking i.e. the one that actually makes money.”  What the definition fails to mention is that the network of the authoritative sites is filled with bogus information solely for the purpose of gaining authority.  Plus, the authority sites are typically recently expired domains that had ‘authority’ at one time but no longer have real authority.

Example of a PBN for Dentists

A blackhat SEO will find and purchase a number of expired dental practice domains like BobTheDentist.com & DentistCarl.com.  Bob and Carl are now retired and living happily ever after on a beach in Florida.
They don’t care about the domains but the domains still have value because for years (maybe decades) other sites have been linking to their domains and giving them authority.  Google still sees 25 real site linking to BobTheDentist and sees that as a good signal.
The black hat SEO will change up some the content (create bogus content)  on Bob and Carl’s websites and link those websites to a dental practice website they are trying to rank.

Can A PBN Rank A Dentist Temporarily?

For now, PBN links might be able to improve the ranking of a dentist website temporarily.  However, every day Google is getting better and better at sniffing out PBN nonsense. (with artificial intelligence – maybe every minute they are getting better!)  When Google catches on, the dental practice can expect that not only will the technique not work but Google will actually penalize the dental practice website.  So, it is kind of like doing a deal with the devil, short-term gain – long-term hell.

Reason #1 Dentists Should Avoid Blackhat SEO (Don’t Be A Cheater Pants!) 

Some dentists ask themselves, “Who gives Google the right to decide where my dental website should appear in search results?”  The quick answer is 2 billion+ people give Google that right by continuing to chose Google as their default search engine.    Next time you are looking for a roofer do you want to see the crappy roofers who gamed the system or do you want to see Google’s best guess of relevant roofer listings?

Reason #2 Dentists Should Avoid Blackhat SEO (PBN SEO Can Destroy Your Dental Practice) 

Dentists are frustrated. Many dentists are attracted by promises of getting their dental website ranked quickly in search engine results.   Blackhat SEO can work sometimes but it is almost always temporary.
One of the worst-case scenarios can be the dentist who gets an artificial ranking for 6-18 months.  Let’s look at an example.  DentistJohnson.com ranks on page 3 of Google and gets few calls or leads.  The dentist agrees to a blackhat SEO package for $5,000 from the local SEO guy and is delighted because DentistJohnson.com starts to rank on Page 1.
Even better, he starts to find new dental patients – lots of new dental patients.   Now, the dentist wants to expand his dental practice.  He hires more staff, buys more equipment and leases new equipment.  DentistJohnson is big time now and ready to take on the world.
Until one terrible day when Google penalizes his website, his SEO guy stops taking his call and his website is on page 25. Now poor Dr. Johnson has a big dental office, lots of employees and no new dental patients. Beware of the Rank and Ruin strategy!

Reason #3 Dentists Should Avoid Blackhat SEO (Google is wicked smart!) 

There were days that blackhat SEO & PBNs worked really well to rank dental websites.  A local SEO company could point a bunch of links to a dentist website and presto the dental website would zoom up to page 1.
These days PBNs need to be much more complicated and won’t last long.  Google is getting better and better at sniffing out nonsense and will shut down dental websites that do not match the profile of a typical dentist website.
Imagine you are Google for a moment.   You have seen hundreds of thousands of dental websites.  You know what the good dentist websites (that people actually like) look like and you know what the bad ones (that people leave in 3 seconds) look like.   You know a typical great local dentist site might have a few medium power links and some decent content.  Now, you see a dentist website that all of sudden has powerful links and crappy content.
Remember, you are Google – what do you do?  You take a close look at these mysterious power links and eventually figure out they are nonsense websites.  If you think your local SEO company is smarter than Google, you are wrong.

Reason #4 Dentist Should Avoid Blackhat SEO (Blackhat SEO is not necessary) 

Local SEO companies turn to blackhat SEO strategies for one simple reason.  They are lazy.
But, the reality is it should not be that difficult to rank a local dentist.  Many websites are competing against thousands of other websites.  That’s difficult.
However, most dental practices are competing only against a dozen or so dentists. If dentists focus on providing great content and updating their dental website often – they will soon be able to rank their dental website on page 1 of Google.  If the content is valuable to searchers, soon the dentist website will be at the top of page one.
Need help with white hat dental SEO strategies?  Check out Dental SEO Tips – Free Instant eBook
Conversion Smiles is a dentist PPC company.
Need help setting up dental AdWords campaigns?  Check out our Dental AdWords Free Tutorial www.conversionsmiles.com/2017/12/22/dental-adwords-set-free-tutorial/

3 Things Your Dental PPC Company Should Tell Your Dental Practice

If your dental PPC company says YES too often you might have a problem.

Your dental PPC company is a consultant.  They should know more about Google AdWords and digital marketing than you ever will.  They should challenge the way you think and help you make improvements to optimize your Google AdWords budget and campaign performance.

1) They Should Tell You That Your Yelp Reviews Need Improvement

Your Dental PPC company should tell you if your local reviews stink.  If you have bad Yelp reviews or only a few Yelp reviews, your AdWords manager should tell you.  Although,  reviews are not directly related to AdWords they do impact your ability to convert new leads.  A potential dental patient is likely to search in Google,  find your dental website and then immediately check Yelp.  If they don’t like what they see, you just wasted AdWords budget and lost a new patient.  Some ‘dentist AdWords managers’ look at that as a ‘You problem’.  They figure they got the dental patient to your website and the rest is up to you.  That attitude is a good indication the dental PPC company is more interested in taking your money and less interested in helping you grow your dental practice.

2) They Should Tell You That You Need Better Landing Pages

Your dental PPC company should tell you that if your dentist Google ad brings a visitor directly to your main page, that is a bad idea.   They should tell you bringing prospective dental patients to a page with a quick form, phone number and a call to action is a great idea.   Your dental PPC company should tell you that bringing a prospective dental patient to a page that is relevant to a specific search is a terrific idea.  Example – Plano, TX orthodontist Google ad leads to a Plano, TX orthodontist landing page.   This might be something that is ‘hard to do’ but your dental ppc company should push you to make it happen if they truly want you to grow your dental practice.  Here’s what AdWords Help says about landing pages…  Understanding landing page experience 

3) They Should Tell You If Your Intake Staff Needs Help 

If your intake staff is awful, your dental PPC company should tell you.  If compared to other dentists new phone calls are just not converting to new dental patients at the same rate –  your intake staff might be the problem.  New dental patients mean more work for dental office employees.  Your employees might be subtly telling new dental patients to ‘buzz off’ or at least not working hard to bring them on as a new patient.  This can be a hard conversation to have with a dentist who thinks of their dental staff as family.  However, it is the responsibility of the AdWords management company to shine a light on anything that will save AdWords budget and help bring in new dental patients to grow the practice.

Need help improving Dental Intake Staff Response? See our post Why You Should Talk To Your Staff About Your Dentist AdWords Campaign

In summary, if your dental PPC company is NOT telling you things you don’t want to hear you might want to rethink if you are working with the right company to help grow your dental practice.  However, if your dental AdWords manager is telling you things you don’t want to hear, you might want to thank them.

Should Dentists Run Ads On The Bing Search Engine?

Dentist Bing Ads

If your dental practice only runs ads on Bing, you might go out of business if you are in a tough market.  But, that does not mean you should avoid the Bing search engine.  You need test Bing and see how Bing works in your market.

Bing Is Growing!

Nearly, 10 years ago, Microsoft introduced Bing with world-class firepower.  At the time, it was almost impossible to avoid the Bing marketing campaign.  Since then the search engine has grown steadily.  Although, Bing is not a real threat to Google plenty of people use the search engine. Many of those people might be your perfect patient.  A 2016 report from comScore US Desktop Search Engine Rankings indicated 21.4% of desktop searches are done with the bing search engine. That’s a nice increase from a similar report in 2011 that indicated Bing was 12% of the desktop search engine market. 

bing dentist near me

Your Perfect Patient on Bing Ads?

Bing Ads makes a lot of claims your dental practice might want to take seriously.  Among other fun facts, Microsoft Bing claims they have 141 million unique searchers and 5 billion overall searches monthly on the search engine.  Here’s some great news for Dentists.  Bing claims only 11% of Bing searches are from 18-24 year olds.  Meanwhile, 20% of Bing Ad searches are from 45-54 year olds?   Your dental practice is likely to find much more profitable patient from 45 year old than a 19-year-old right?  You can learn more about The Bing Network audience here. 

Your Biggest Competitor is not on Bing Ads?

There are a couple of reasons competitor dentists might not be on Bing Ads.   Dentists doing Google AdWords themselves are already overwhelmed with managing and monitoring one ad platform.   Those dentists also might believe they don’t have enough money for Google AdWords so it doesn’t make sense to reduce their AdWords budget to spend money on Microsoft Bing.   Dentists who rely on Dentist AdWords management companies might also not be getting any help with Bing.   Managing Bing Ads for dentists is a bunch more work that many AdWords companies.  Those companies don’t want to get involved with Bing because they can get OK results for dentists simply using Google AdWords.  Those pay per click companies also often don’t have any experience with Bing Ads and are afraid to fail.  For these reasons,  Bing Ads is very underused and a lot less competitive than AdWords for dentists.  (You can learn some AdWords Basics here…   AdWords Basics For Dentists Who Can’t Spell PPC )

Why not use Bing Ads?

So, your perfect dental patient might be doing a search for “dentist, near me” on Bing.com right now.  Plus, competitive dentists are likely to not be advertising on Bing ads.   That means there is an opportunity to find a great dental patient Bing and you are not even at the party.

The Bad News / Good News Dentist Ads on Bing Ads Mobile Search

So, here’s the bad news.  Mobile search is much tougher for Bing Ads.  Right now, most mobile phones in the US are Apple iPhones and Androids from Google.   Androids default to Google as a search engine and so do Apple iPhone.  In fact, the iPhone market is so important to Google they reportedly paid Apple $3 Billion in 2017 to remain as the default search engine on Apple devices.  Google is paying Apple billions per year to remain on the iPhone  However, we all know technology moves fast and nothing stays the same for long.  Next time you look up Microsoft could have the hot new phone (it could happen!) or Microsoft could decide to pay Apple $5 Billion to be the default search.  A couple things are for sure.  Google Adwords is getting more crowded for dentists  Google Adwords is getting more competitive for dentists.  If your dental practice is smart you should but a couple chips down on Bing ads – Microsoft is not going anywhere and Bing Ads can bring you some new dental patients now and in the future.

Conversion Smiles is an Adwords & Bing Management Company




Dentist Google Ads Review – “Tooth Extraction” – Atlanta, GA

Down south, people are known for being polite and civil.  Let’s take a look at how Dentists approach Google AdWords in a place like Atlanta, GA.

First, let’s look at a Google ad from Chamblee Dental Care

This Google ad effectively uses the keyword “tooth extraction” first thing in the headline but also uses the headline to promote the fact that “same day emergencies are welcome”.   Of course, getting relief asap must be very attractive to most dental patients.  Using the term, “welcome” is very clever because it tells the searcher ‘we specialize in handling emergencies quickly’.   The only issue we see here is this dental practice’s website indicates they are actually closed on Sundays which is when we found this ad.  If all of the other local dental practices are also closed and someone from the dental office follows up asap – no problem – however, if Dr. Jones across town does offer Sunday dental tooth extractions – this might not be the best timed Google Ad.  Google Adwords allows dentists to easily schedule ads to turn off on weekends and nights.  However, we think the best practice is to run ads more often and actually confirm the appointment for when the dental practice is open.  (Don’t wait to confirm when the dental practice re-opens!)

Something else we like about this Google ad is how the dental practice uses price to attract clicks.  Providing a low price of $90 is a great way to get clicks.  Those clicks will likely to convert into new dental patients as long as that price doesn’t change along the way.

Next up we have a Google ad for Dr. Richard Walls, D.M.D..  This Google ad is a little confusing to us.  Dentists don’t pay more for using more lines in a Google ad so why not take full advantage of all the ad real estate provided by Google?

This Google ad seems to jam in a bunch of keywords rather than try to actually talk to prospective dental patients.

This is probably a good time to remind dentists of the anatomy of a Google ad.   The first blue line is called the headline.  The next line is called a “display url”.  It is called a “display url” because the url doesn’t actually need to exist – it is simply the url you want to display to attract more clicks and make your Google ad more relevant to the searcher.  For instance, Dr. Walls might have wanted to use a display url of www.wallsomes.com/Tooth_Extraction as tooth extraction was the keyword being searched.  The line that starts with “dental implant/ bone graft” is called Description Line 1.  Description Line 1 should be used to show relevance to the keyword and create interest.  Description Line 2 is not being used at all by this Google advertiser and we think that is a big missed opportunity. Description Line 2 should be used for an emotional trigger and/or to promote benefits of doing business with your dental practice.  Finally,  Google ad extensions can be used to show more details about your location, services offered, etc.  There are two big reasons dentists should use all this space Google provides.  First, you can ‘own’ more of the Google results page and show more relevant information.   Second,  Google rewards relevant ads that provide searchers with useful information and often charges less for those relevant ads.  It is very likely the cost of a click for the first huge ad for Chamblee Dental Care on the first page was actually cheaper than the cost of a click for the tiny ad for  Dr. Richard Walls, D.M.D.. which appeared on the 2nd page of Google search results.

You can learn more about how to add extensions to your Google ads from the AdWords video below…



At ConversionSmiles, we NEVER click on Dentist Google ads!  We want to save dentists money not waste it on unnecessary clicks. We also provide friendly SEO links to dental practices to help new patients find your dental practice with organic search.  (not a bad thing to have a link from a website that mostly talks about dentist stuff!)  Learn more about our professional Adwords Management for Dentists