Q?What’s the difference between organic, local, and pay-per-click results?

When using Google to search for a keyword in a specific area, you will generally see three types of results. The top 1-3 results and results in the right hand side bar (usually highlighted) will be pay-per-click ads. Below this will be a mixture of organic and local results.

Organic search results refer to main website listings. These results get built up by on-site SEO (search engine optimization), search engine marketing (SEM), link building, social signals, and a variety of other factors. They consist of local/national business websites, search directories, blogs, news sources, and other listings.

Local results refer to the Google+ (previously referred to as Maps or Places listings) listings. These are the results that correspond with a position on the map. These results are improved by proper optimization, citation building, and also have a strong correlation to your main website SEO and SEM.

Developing a marketing strategy to improve all 3 results should be a focus of every business. Properly managed pay per click ads can provide immediate results with a great return on investment, while organic and map listings can take a little more time.. but may be seen as more trusted results.

Q?What is pay-per-click? I’ve heard this can help my website rankings?

Pay-per-click (PPC) is exactly what it sounds like. You are paying a varied amount every time one of your ads gets clicked on. Google Adwords and Yahoo are popular platforms for this service. A properly managed campaign can provide you with a great return on investment. The average business makes $2 for every $1 spent on PPC ads. The upside of PPC is that just about anyone can set up some ads and let them run. The downside is that this type of advertising can get very expensive if not managed professionally, especially within the dental market. For example, targeting an ad to the keyword “dentist” in your local area could cost around $8.00 or more per click. This is just to get them to your website.. it doesn’t mean they will call you. A properly managed campaign should have well thought out ads and keywords and lead traffic to a high converting landing page. This is where Engage Marketing comes in. We properly setup and manage campaigns to bring our clients a positive return on investment.

A popular myth is that pay-per-click ads can increase your website’s rankings. This is both true and false… but more so false. These types of ads may bring more traffic to your website (which can help with rankings), but usually we don’t see much correlation between the two. This is why we suggest a marketing campaign focusing on both PPC and organic/local marketing.

Q?What is SEO?

SEO stands for search engine optimization. SEO involves optimizing your website for the keywords, services, and area(s) that you want to target for your office. Most clients already have websites, and most of these sites need to be optimized for the best results. We don’t change the design of the site, mostly just some of the back-end code so search engines like Google and Yahoo can find your website. This is the foundation of any online marketing campaign. If you already have a site up and running we just provide with the necessary information you can send over to your designer. They should know what to do with it, and if not, we are here to help!

Q?How long does it take to see results?

The million dollar question! There are a lot of factors that come into play when trying to answer this one. When referring to SEO (organic and local listings), it generally takes 3-9 months to see results depending on your current foundation and what your competition is doing. Some of our clients have seen first page results in as little as 2 weeks, while other campaigns have taken longer. Trust us that we are doing everything we can to get you results as soon as possible without looking “spammy” or unnatural to Google (which can hurt your site in the long run), but it just takes time.┬áThat being said, there’s no better time than now to start your online marketing campaign before your competition gets too far ahead.

When referring to pay-per-click (PPC), we can have a campaign up and running within 14 days or so. Once we start the campaign the ads start showing immediately and your practice phone starts ringing with new leads.

Q?Do I have to sign a long term contract?

Most of our packages require a 6 month agreement, only because it takes time to see results. We want to make sure you give our marketing plan time to take effect. After your initial agreement runs out you are transferred to month to month billing. All we require is a 30 days notice to cancel. We are confident enough in our services to let you decide how long you want our relationship to last, and in the end we hope that’s forever! One thing to remember though is that we only work with one office in each city or neighborhood to avoid competing for the same keywords. If you decide to cancel with us, your competitor down the road now has the option to hire us.

Q?What is link building?

Each of our packages include monthly link building. We are constantly building high quality links that point back to your website from a variety of sources. Generally speaking, the more links you have the better off your rankings will be. With Google’s constant updates it’s imperative to have a reliable source for this kind of work. It’s not hard to find a company to build links for you for a cheap price, but a lot of times they either aren’t really building links or are sending you low quality links. In the end, a poor quality link building campaign will hurt your online rankings, rather than help. Trust us for quality link building!

Q?What kind of results can my office expect?

Each client varies depending on details like their package chosen, geographic location, years in business, domain name age, social platforms, other marketing campaigns in place, etc. The more of a budget you are willing to set aside, the more options you have. Keep in mind the leads you will be getting are from targeted, potential patients that searched for a specific service you offer; the second they call your office they are ready to make an appointment. It’s up to your office front staff at that point to sell them. Also, we try to target higher paying services for you to make sure you get the best possible return on investment. A lot of times, just a couple of extra, new patients per month can pay for our services… the rest is profit.