Controlling your results on Google

Controlling your results on Google
19 August 2011 | | Search Engine Optimisation

As you’re no doubt aware, any Dental Marketing company that offers you as a dentist complete control over your Google listings, is generally not telling the truth! Even on Google Adwords your dental practice can not be promised a top placement, and this is even more true on the ‘organic’ Google listings (Google SERPs). But finally Google has given some direct control over lists to us! Read how to control your google listing.

Managing your Google ‘sitelinks’

Google recently announced an expansion to their ‘sitelinks’, the list of links that show when you search for a specific brand ie Dental Design.

How does this affect the marketing of your dental practice?

With these changes by Google, more people are bound to visit a specific page directly from a search on google, and this obviously gives you plenty of opportunities to be sell specific items such as tooth whitening.

Take control of the pages prospective dental patients see

If you do a search for your practice name, what do you see? Imagine you’re a prospective dental patient what do you see without any scrolling or clicks? These are pages deep in your site, that Google knows a large proportion of your sites visitors have looked at in the past. But, whilst they may be the most visited pages, are they actually the ones you want people to find? Would you prefer them to find different pages? Would you like to be promoting a specific, high value treatment, such as tooth whitening, dental implants?

How to manage your dental practices Google sitelinks

To control the sitelinks that show on Google you need to use your ‘Google Webmaster Tools’, account to try to control what pages appear in your links.

In the navigation of your account you will have to click on the ‘Site Configuration’ link, and then the ‘Sitelinks’ link:-

and when you’re in this page, you can give Google the specific URL that is showing on your ‘Sitelinks’ that you would like to demote ie ‘patients area’. Thereby enabling you to effectively ‘promote’ other pages ie tooth whitening.

However, please be aware, as with most things relating to google, they do not promise to action your request, and, it only works for 90 days, so you will have to keep an eye on the results.

Below is the actual blog posted by Google about the changes to ‘sitelinks’:-

The evolution of sitelinks: expanded and improved

When you’re searching, you often have a specific task in mind, like figuring out which exhibits are showing at a nearby museum. Despite this narrow goal, people often start with a broad query, like [metropolitan museum of art], with no mention of exhibits. For these searches, the first result may include a list of links to specific sections of the site, which are called “sitelinks.” Today, we’re launching several improvements to sitelinks, including the way they look and are organized in search results.

Sitelinks have been around for a while, but when we first launched them years ago, they were much more limited—a single row of just four links:

It turns out that sitelinks are quite useful because they can help predict which sections of the site you want to visit. Even if you didn’t specify your task in the query, sitelinks help you quickly navigate to the most relevant part of the site, which is particularly handy for large and complex websites. Sitelinks can also give you a good overview of a website’s content, and let webmasters expose areas of the site that visitors may not know about.

As it became clear how valuable sitelinks were, we continued to improve their appearance and quality. We rearranged them into a column of links to make them easier to read. We doubled the number of links, creating direct access to more of the site. We started showing sitelinks for more results and we continuously made improvements to the algorithms that generate and rank the links. With each of these changes, people used sitelinks more and more.

That brings us to today’s launch. Sitelinks will now be full-size links with a URL and one line of snippet text—similar to regular results—making it even easier to find the section of the site you want. We’re also increasing the maximum number of sitelinks per query from eight to 12.

In addition, we’re making a significant improvement to our algorithms by combining sitelink ranking with regular result ranking to yield a higher-quality list of links. This reduces link duplication and creates a better organized search results page. Now, all results from the top-ranked site will be nested within the first result as sitelinks, and all results from other sites will appear below them. The number of sitelinks will also vary based on your query—for example, [museum of art nyc] shows more sitelinks than [the met] because we’re more certain you want results from www.metmuseum.org.

These changes will be rolling out globally over the next few days in all supported languages to anyone using a modern browser, such as Chrome, Firefox or IE 7 and above. We hope these changes make it easier and faster for you to reach the information you need.

This google blog was first published on the ‘Official Google Search Blog’ and is replicated with thanks by Dental Design.

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