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What should a dentist rank for?

22nd January 2016 | | Marketing, Search Engine Optimisation

At a recent client meeting I was, quite rightly, quizzed on what a dentist should be ranking for, and how do we as an agency actually know what keywords someone is searching for when looking for a dentist.

In this blog I highlight the knowledge base we use and process taken to determine the keywords that we see as providing the most targeted traffic for practices.

How People Search

The way people search on google is changing all the  time. Nowadays people are much more likely to type in a question to Google, than say 5 or 10 years ago. They can search using their voice, or even search based on their specific location.

All these changes in behaviour has meant that over the last few years the ‘Search Demand Curve’ has evolved, where around 80% of all daily searches online have never been searched for before.


An example of this is someone searching for ‘dentist offering dental implants with free consultation’, as opposed to that person searching for ‘dental implants’ dentist, or ‘dentist’.

As the internet has grown, so has the savvyness of the user. The behaviour is rewarded with more targeted pages that have their answer, so they search like this more and more.

How does this help us select Keywords?

We make sure we select a wide range of keywords to focus our SEO efforts on. We ensure the content of the website contains the keywords that will be searched for. We encourage dentists and where needed help them produce regular updates to the website, such as a blog to help with this too.

Google Trends

This is a really useful, and kinda cool, tool that google have.


Where Google has enough search traffic this tool allows you to compare search terms.

Here are three examples we have used to illustrate to tour dentists why we advise the keywords, teeth whitening over tooth whitening, root canal treatment over Endodontics and dental hygienist over Periodontist.

teeth whitening

root canal


Search History

It’s been around 4 years now since Google decided to exclude the vast majority of search terms that a website might be found for in their analytic tools.

The only work around that we have been able to sue is the knowledge from the growing number of online advertising campaigns that we work with. Thankfully, Google AdWords provides details of what the patient, potential patient are searching for dentistry.

We utilise this information in our account management on a daily basis.

Competition Analysis

A competitor analysis of the meta data (title tags and description tags), of competitors websites will help you determine which keywords to focus your SEO campaign on. It can reveal keywords that your competition dominate and provide some quick wins for those that they are not doing so well with. Also, a more detailed analysis using moz.com can provide you with your competitors backlink profile so that you can see what work is involved in achieving the same rankings they have, and in time take over the top spot.

15 Years’ worth of Dental Search Knowledge

Being dental specific for all these years has meant we’ve seen the behavioural progression of search and what drives the most targeted traffic to our dentists websites. The singe most important metric is a full appointment book, and whatever keyword is achieving this is your must-have keyword.

Our team are on hand to discuss your dental marketing and specific keywords for your dental practice on 01202 677277.

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