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Posted on Monday, May 16, 2016 - 12:05 by admin

We have had a number of ODs ask us about solicitation calls they received from SEO companies that claim they are Google Partners and that as such, a Google employee had “joined" the call. The callers implied that because they were “in” with Google, they could have a bigger impact on SEO and Google ranking.  

This is misleading for a number of reasons and it’s a tactic that many SEO companies are using to scam businesses into using their services.

What exactly is a Google Partner company and does this make it more qualified to improve your SEO and Google rankings?

If a company claims that it is a Google Partner, this is probably true, however this status has no impact on organic search or SEO.  Google Partners are certified for Adwords ONLY, which is Google’s paid advertising platform.  That means they take the money you spend with them each month and invest a percentage of it into Google’s Pay-Per-Click advertising.

Instead of claiming they will get you number one ranking in the search engines, they promote "putting you on the 1st page." They can guarantee that because they are offering paid advertising, not actual rankings, so they can ensure you have an ad on the first page - but it is exactly that, an ad, not a search result.

When it comes to pay-per-click advertising you are limited on your potential visitors by the amount of money you spend. So if you invest say $100 and a click-on an ad costs you $5 on average per click, the most this will do is give you a boost of 20 visits per month. Normal organic rankings are unlimited and can hit in the 100-200 range or more a month. 

So if someone says they are a Google Partner, read between the lines. They are speaking strictly about Pay-Per-Click advertising on Google Adwords and not about organic search rankings.

For information about being a Google Partner see here https://support.google.com/partners/answer/3126965

Can an SEO company or Webmaster be “Google Certified”?

No. Google has stated numerous times that they do not and will not certify SEO experts, so if anyone ever claims to be “Google certified” for SEO they are misleading you.  Many search experts have requested this status but Google continually rejects it because they believe it will interfere with the search process and they do not want to accept money for certification when organic results are not based on paying Google.

Google offers certification for other products such as AdWords, AdSense, Analytics and Google Apps among other things, however for organic search and SEO, they do not. You can read more about this topic here:

http://searchengineland.com/google-wont-provide-seo-certifications-to-webmasters-or-seo-companies-242361

Will a Google Employee Join up with an SEO Company?

No. Google does not make partnerships with SEOs or webmasters. Google representatives only make phone calls to businesses to verify their business page and they would do this by requesting a call through your business. If your page has already been verified, they would not have a reason to request a call.

In short, when it comes to ranking on Google, there are no shortcuts. Any legitimate SEO company will have to go through all of the necessary steps to make sure your website is properly optimized and maintained. This will usually take some time, so be patient and don’t be tempted to fall into the trap of someone selling “guaranteed results”.

Questions? Contact me by email at daniel@eyecarepro.net or phone (412) 532-6542.

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Posted on Thursday, July 16, 2015 - 05:10 by NancyRausman

Google pay-per-click advertising can be one of the most effective forms of local marketing for your Practice.  The basics include writing various ads, specifying who sees those and what keywords trigger those ads, and chosing how much to spend.  Granted, that’s an oversimplification of the process, but here are 5 key benefits to using Google pay-per-click advertising for your Practice:

  1. Set your own budget: PPC is based on a pre-set budget, so once the spending amount that you selected is reached, the ad simply stops being shown. Therefore, PPC is low risk and has a controllable spending outcome.  
  2. Target using the most relevant keywords: With keyword-based campaigns, your ad will attract visitors that are genuinely interested in the product or service you are trying to promote (e.g. optometrist, eye exam, eye doctor, vision therapy, etc.). 
  3. Target specific geographic locations and demographics: You choose the geographic and demographic populations you want to target with the ad (such as radius around your office, or city, zip code, age, gender and parental status). So you won’t be wasting your time and money advertising to individuals out of your service area; your ad will only appear to those you want to attract.
  4. Another source of visibility in addition to organic (non-paid) search results: Especially in areas with a lot of competition vying for the coveted top search results, PPC can give your practice a chance to show up as an ad on the first page whether or not your website already appears in the top results.
  5. Clear ROI: Since you can track your results, you can clearly measure your ROI to determine if PPC is worth the investment for you. 

In our next digital tip, we will show you how to get started with PPC advertising. In the meantime, check out EyeCarePro’s new ODPPC service, designed to drive more traffic to your site and increase your patient base. 

Want to learn more? Contact Daniel at Daniel@eyecarepro.net or phone (412) 532-6542.

Posted on Thursday, July 9, 2015 - 07:21 by NancyRausman

In The Single Most Important Reason Why Online Marketing Is More Important Than Ever, a recent article published in Forbes.com, Nicole Leinbach-Reyhle stresses that online marketing is no longer a choice for small businesses, but a reality that they can no longer ignore. 

According to Leinbach-Reyhle, "Many businesses, particularly those that don’t actually sell anything online, often complain that there’s not enough time in the day to “do it all” and as a result, online marketing gets shoved to the side."

Sound familiar? In addition to citing time and money as limitations to launching online marketing, we find that many of our clients prefer to spend their time making their patients happy and improving their services and expertise in optometry than thinking about the details of SEO and Facebook strategy.  

The article continues, "Unfortunately, this isn’t how customers make decisions. The reality is consumers – likely even you – turn to the internet to discover what to do, where to go, who to buy things from and more. "

Describing what we often refer to as "integrated marketing," which is a strategy that we offer in our marketing services, Leinbach-Reyhle states that  “leveraging your online and offline marketing ​together ​can more than double your efforts.” She further details three main components to "being online" which include: 

  • a responsive (mobile accessible) website that is search engine optimized,
  • an active social media presence, and 
  • an email marketing strategy. 

And in case you are wondering, here is the punchline:

"The Single Most Important Reason You Need to Be Online 

Consumers have too many choices these days and they have to be constantly reminded that you exist. The best way to reach them is where they spend a good bit of time… which is online,” Servis, a VP of Marketing with SnapRetail, firmly states.

And that, friends, leads us to the single most important reason you need to be consistently and efficiently using online marketing as part of your sales strategy… customers. Customers are online, which mean you need to be, too."

We agree Nicole...its' all about customers.  

Want more customers? Call us, we can help you get the patients in the door so you can focus on making them happy!

 

Posted on Thursday, July 2, 2015 - 14:30 by NancyRausman

Has Your Mobile Traffic Dropped Lately? This Could be Why

Something is brewing over at Google. They are keeping their lips shut tight so there isn’t a lot of information available right now, but it seems as though they are testing out a bunch of changes with their local rankings, specifically how the local search results are appearing on mobile devices. 

We have noticed changes in how the search results appear for local businesses on mobile as well as some traffic fluctuation for a number of our clients.  Firstly, we have seen instances where Google has reduced the number of results shown on the first page of a local mobile search from 5 to 2-3 results. This could reduce the amount of visitors to sites in the 3-5 spots that are now relocated to page two of the search results. 

Secondly, we have noticed that in some cases Google has listed a Practice’s Google My Business Page in the results with no link to the actual Practice website. That means patients on mobile devices may be coming to you directly from your Google My Business page and not through your website. Ultimately, as long as your business page is up to date this shouldn’t affect conversions since the users are being brought to your Practice’s online property and contact information, however it will look like a drop in visitors on your website analytics. 

If you see a drop in website visitors, what should you do?

We have to wait it out to see what Google decides to do but in the meantime, it’s a good idea to ensure your Google Business Listing is up to par and to continue to make efforts to improve your ranking on mobile search as usual. You can see traffic that is going to your Google My Business page in your Google My Business dashboard. Scroll down to the middle of the page in your dashboard and click on the Insights button. That will show you traffic that may not be making it to your website. You will only see this if your Google My Business page has been phone or post-card verified.

 

Need some help with your Google My Business Page and mobile search? Our expert SEO team is here to help. Contact Daniel at daniel@eyecarepro.net or phone (412)532-6542.

Posted on Thursday, July 2, 2015 - 11:27 by admin

Doing "well" isn't enough anymore; the local marketplace is more competitive than ever. As your competition grows your online marketing strategy has to continually adapt to get ahead and stay ahead. ODMetro takes the offensive in helping your Practice to get on top and continuously outperform your local competitors in the search engines. Learn more about ODMetro here

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Daniel Rostenne Daniel Rostenne is a leader in the online optometric community and has made a career of creating and promoting effective web sites for optometric practices. He is a COPE educator, editor of Optometry Web, a regular speaker at eyecare events & conferences and has been widely published in Optometric e-zines. Daniel is an expert in Search Engine Optimization and Social Media Optimization, in particular as it relates to best practices for Optometrists. You can sometimes find Daniel daydreaming on Google+.

Contact Daniel: 866-886-4442 or danielr@eyecarepro.net

Nancy Rausman Nancy Rausman is the managing editor of the EyeCarePro blog and Optometry Web Newsletter. She is responsible for providing ECPs with educational content that helps them advance their practices through technology, management strategies and digital marketing.

Contact Nancy:nancy@eyecarepro.net