If you’ve heard of a Google core algorithm update but aren’t sure what it means for your practice’s website, this one’s for you! (Or if you’ve never heard of Google core updates and care about your practice’s website performance, this one’s for you too.)
What is a Google core update?
Google is the world’s most popular search engine, receiving 8.5 billion user searches every day! To maintain its place as #1 search engine, Google consistently rolls out updates to its algorithm to ensure that it provides users with the most relevant and highest-quality search results possible. These are called Google core algorithm updates.
Google core algorithm updates aim to improve the user search experience by reassessing and re-ranking web pages based on various factors. These updates can have a significant impact on how your orthodontic practice’s website ranks in search engine results pages (SERPs).
The Google March core update in 2023 is the latest algorithm update to roll out. It focused on boosting search rankings for websites that have high-quality content, while penalizing and decreasing search rankings for websites that use ‘black hat SEO’ (unethical practices to manipulate search engine rankings and gain an unfair advantage in organic search results.)
So, what does all of this mean for your orthodontic practice?
What Google core algorithm updates mean for your practice
Ultimately, this means that the way your prospective patients are finding you online is constantly changing, and the ‘rules’ Google uses to determine whether your website should show up when a prospective patient searches for you are also changing.
Let’s break it down:
A core algorithm update can lead to fluctuations in your practice website’s rankings. Some pages may rise to the top, while others might experience a drop in visibility – based on a range of varying factors.
It’s important to monitor page rankings on your website after a Google algorithm update drops, to stay ahead of the curve, make any necessary changes, and ensure that rankings aren’t lost.
Websites that align with the updated ranking signals and provide high-quality, relevant content are likely to see improvements in their rankings. On the other hand, sites that fail to meet the updated criteria may experience a decline in rankings.
As your experienced digital marketing team (Hi!), it’s our job to stay informed on Google algorithm updates and monitor your website performance to adapt our strategies and maintain/ improve your website’s visibility – every single time an algorithm update rolls out!
User Experience Focus
Google’s core algorithm updates are often designed to prioritize websites that provide an ideal user experience. Factors such as page speed, mobile-friendliness, and relevant content hold even more weight when these experience-focused updates drop.
As these types of Google core algorithm updates occur, websites that aren’t designed and developed with the user experience top-of-mind will continue to phase out of search rankings and drop lower on search results.
*Another shameless plug* At eNox Media, we create a range of website solutions (from cost-effective template websites to fully-custom websites) – all designed with modern features to provide a positive user experience.
Quality Content Matters
With each update, Google emphasizes the importance of high-quality, relevant content. Google wants to ensure that your website offers informative and engaging content that caters to the needs and queries of potential patients. This is where a strong SEO strategy is key.
Google algorithm updates serve to ensure that your website is up-to-date with recent, relevant content that best aligns with what your virtual patients are searching for. If your website content doesn’t follow best SEO practices, your website will continue to slip to lower rankings as new Google updates roll out.
It’s important to update your blog regularly (ideally, twice monthly) with valuable content that directs users to your website and answers their questions about orthodontics. Maintaining updated content on your website treatment pages will also help establish your practice as an authoritative source in the field. (Google loves that.)
Local SEO Considerations
Local SEO is vital for orthodontic practices. Think about it – (most) patients aren’t traveling across the state or across the country to find an orthodontist. Your website and citations (business listings) must be optimized for local searches in order for new patients to find you.
Core algorithm updates often refine the way Google evaluates and displays local search results. Optimize your Google My Business profile, ensure consistent NAP (Name, Address, Phone) information across directories, and encourage positive patient reviews to enhance your local search presence. Your website should also include local SEO keywords and key pages to help match your practice with users’ searches.
Google Algorithm Updates: Adaptability and Continuous Improvement
To thrive in the digital marketing landscape, orthodontic practices must stay agile and adapt to the evolving SEO strategies and Google algorithms. Otherwise, prospective patients won’t be able to find you through Google – and you can imagine how detrimental that can be.
Google’s core algorithm updates play a significant role in shaping search engine results, and ultimately, the visibility of your orthodontic practice’s website. Staying up-to-date with the latest Google algorithm updates is imperative if you want to continue securing new patients over your competitors. Fortunately, you don’t have to do the research and make the updates yourself! That’s why we’re here.
Our industry experts at eNox Media stay on top of the latest developments and advancements in orthodontic marketing so you don’t have to. We take care of your online presence, while you continue providing high-quality orthodontic care for your patients.
Let us handle the grunt work! Contact us to request your complimentary digital audit today.