6 Reasons Why Your SEO Is Not Working For Your Dental Website

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Hi, Liza here from Content Maximiser. I was chatting with one of our clients during our monthly catch-up with Dr Wong, who has got three clinics in Melbourne. He said to me, “Liza, I’m really happy with the results, especially with the SEO. I can see that we’re getting more and more traffic from the search engine but what I don’t understand is that for the last few years we’ve been paying an agency to do our SEO, but it just doesn’t have the results that you guys have. Why is that? Why didn’t my SEO work before, but now it does with you guys?”

It is such a common question. We see it over and over again the longer our clients work with us and then we actually zoom out and look historically in their search engine traffic for the last two years, you literally see a flat line and then things start going up when they start working with us. So I thought I’ll make a quick video sharing with you the five reasons why your SEO is not working.

What is SEO?

First of all, let’s start with what is SEO. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation, and it basically is the ongoing effort that you do to optimise your website to get it ranking on the search engine, the most important one Google. So for example when people search for “dentists Pyrmont”, which is where I’m located, then the dental practice around here they should be, well, what they want to go for is to be on page one ideally the top three position of the search results or search terms such as “dentists near me”. You want to be on page one, ideally top three positions.

Now, the thing is a website doesn’t miraculously happen to be on the top positions on the search engine results. Ongoing effort needs to be put in to move the site up.

Now, if you say to me, “Well, Liza you know my dental practice is on page one and we didn’t do anything.” Well, congratulations. I’m really happy for you. But the reality is for a low-traffic keyword that could happen, but for the big keywords, especially the one without suburbs, that takes a lot of resources and a lot of work to continuously get the site to move up.

Because a site to… for such to go up, what it means is that you actually need to bring other sites down and that takes effort to do. And that’s the reason why you will need to have ongoing resources and activities to get your site moving up by bringing other websites down. So now that we understand what SEO is and theoretically how that works, let’s go into the five reasons why your SEO might not be working.

Your agency might be going after very low traffic volume keywords

So in our experience, you can be going for keywords of your service with the local suburb. And the thing is to rank those keywords it’s actually not that hard, right? It’s quite easy because the search volume is so low and when I say low, I mean between zero to 10 searches a month. So if you rank number one for something that no one’s searched for is good vanity metric, it makes you feel good, but that’s not going to give you traffic and make money. As a matter of fact, that is one of the most common thing that we see when we do our audit with our clients is that the website is ranking for all super low volume keywords and then their agency says, “Hey look how great we’ve done”, but in reality those keywords are actually not giving them traffic. What you want instead is you want to rank for keywords like services that are based on the city or without a city at all, like Invisalign or cosmetic dentistry or cosmetic dentist Sydney, or a dental implant and that’s it.

Because one of the things that Google look at is the location of the searcher. And they know that when the person is in an area, they’re going to do search results based on where they’re located, irrespective of whether someone actually typed a suburb in or not.

But to rank for services that are keywords that don’t have a suburb or a city attached to it, it’s very competitive and that would take a lot of strong resources to get it going. So, like I said, maybe the first mistake is that your agency is simply after local keywords in their SEO activity.

Your agency is doing low-value activities for your sites.

So what do I mean by low-value activities? Well, one of the things that, not the only, but one of the important activities to do with SEO is actually doing it link building.

Now, there’s link building and then there’s link building.

It’s like wine, you got $5 bottle of wine and you’ve got $5,000 bottle of wine. What, they’re both wine so what’s the difference? Well, one of them could be the age of the wine, a wine that is one month old compared to a bottle of wine that is 50 years old, right? You simply can’t buy time, right? You need time to let the wine mature. So it’s exactly the same as link building activities and the type of sites that are linked to yours.

A website that links to your site that is one month old versus another site that is 20 years old, with all that history that links to yours will have a completely different result.

So one of the reasons why we see the result that we get from our Practice Growth Program clients and their SEO and how they get that upward trend in the traffic is because of the quality of the links that were linked to their sites.

Having high-quality websites to link to our client’s sites is actually really hard to get and that is one of our secret ingredients. So like I said, maybe the reason why your SEO is not working as well as it could is that your SPL provider is giving you a lot of links, but they’re giving you a quantity rather than quality.

Your onsite SEO is not structured properly.

The content of your website and the metadata on your site. So they could be at your meta title, your meta description, your focus keywords. They are not being placed. Maybe the images are not renamed to target keywords for your, services that you are after. So all of this has got onsite implications.

So you want to make sure that your onsite is done properly to give the search engine as many clues as possible on what each of your pages is about and what you’re targeting.

Your site could be too spammy

You might have an old-school SEO provider who’s very aggressive and they put a lot of spammy links, spammy keywords, all for optimised keywords onto your site. And Google will go, “Hold on a second, looks like they’re trying to trick us here… Why are they saying Invisalign Sydney 10 times on one page” So as a result, not only do you not move up, they might penalize you and move you down.

During the COVID period, we have one of our clients say “Liza, we want to go hard with emergency dentistry because that’s the only thing we can do.” And I said to them, “Yes, we can focus on that but we can’t go hard because if we do, what if we over to optimise and we get penalized for the site?” That is the last thing you want to do.

So you want to make sure that your site is not over optimised in a piece spammy to the search engine.

You could be a target of a Black Hat Strategy

This is something that a lot of people are not aware of is that another practice, their SEO company might be into some shady black hat strategy. So think about it in order for a site to go up a site for many sites has to come down, right?

Maybe another agency strategy is to put really bad links pointing to other sites and try to pull them down in order to pull their client up. For our practice growth program clients, when we do SEO for them, not only do we do the ongoing activities, but we actually monitor the site and see if there are some shady links that get linked to the site. And when that happens, that can actually impact the site moving forward, if not coming down. So what could happen is that your site has been targeted for Black Hat Strategy, your SEO provider didn’t pick that up and get them disavowal and as a result, it is hindering you from going up or maybe it can cause a sudden drop on your site.

BONUS REASON: Your site is simply too slow.

The speed of your website has a major impact on the SEO and the ranking of the sites. We went through a major project last year to move all our client’s site to another server, which is a node in Australia.

Now it took us a while to decide to do that because another factor that we look at with our hosting is actually the level of support and the quality of support and the speed of the support. So back then, there wasn’t a provider in Australia that really provide the level of service that we are after until last year when we found one.

So as a result, there is an SEO gain because we have a local Australian note. What it means is that the time it takes to load is one or two seconds shorter, and that definitely has an impact. And as a result, all our client site has benefited not only because it loads faster, but also from an SEO standpoint. So you want to make sure that your site is hosted with a hosting company that also has a node in Australia.


So to summarise the five reasons well actually six reasons, why your SEO is not working for your dental site could be: Number one, your SEO company is targeting very low volume keywords like local keywords. Number two is that they’re doing low-value activities for you so they’re focusing on quantity rather than quality. Number three is that your onsite is not structured properly with your metadata. Number four is that your site could be over optimised, it is too spammy. Number five is that you could be a target of a Black Hat Strategy by a competitor. And number six is that maybe this site is too slow while SEO may consider being old school, not as sexy as social media, but with all our clients this is definitely one of the major traffic sources for them and it is quality traffic because these are people actually looking for their services.

Next step

So if you want to take advantage of search engine traffic, we would love to help. We have a Practice Growth Program, which is designed to help dental practices, double their business in three years or less. As a matter of fact, I just saw the data yesterday and we helped one of our clients did it in 10 months. So if you want to learn more about it, simply fill in the enquiry form on our website or DM us on social media, and we’ll love to have a chat. So I look forward to connecting with you and I’ll see you at the next video.


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