Search Engine Land recently shared a story of a dentist whose business was booming– until a decision was made to change the name of his practice. His search engine rankings were nearly destroyed, making it unlikely that patients searching for dentists in his area would come across his website.
Changing your practice name can be damaging to your SEO efforts. If you’re looking into changing your practice name due to a new location, new staff edition, or simply because you’re trying to “rebrand” your practice, take this story into consideration and consider the suggestions below
- Steer clear from changing your website domain name. Switching domains can result in losing a lot of search engine traffic. If you must change your domain name, make sure you have a plan in place to build links to your new site. In addition, Search Engine Land suggests putting a pay-per-click campaign in place to reach patients searching for your services while working on your new site’s SEO.
- Localize your new practice name. Consider using a location term in your new business name. For example, Search Engine Land says “Bell Family Dental of Carlsbad” may perform better than “Bell Family Dental.”
- Update information on all online directories, review sites and social networks. Google uses your NAP data (business name, address and phone number) to help determine how you rank in local searches. Make sure your business listing is updated to reflect your new practice name; this includes your Google+ Local listing!In addition, be sure to update your social networks with your new business name. This may mean changing your Facebook Page name and Twitter handle. Please note, you may only change your Facebook Page name if you have less than 200 likes!
- Broadcast to your social networks. Let your social networks know about your new business name in advanced so no one is confused or surprised.
- Tell your patients! Perhaps most importantly, let your patients know! Tell them about your new practice name by word of mouth when they visit, send an email blast or even direct-mail post cards.
Expert Healthcare SEO Solution
If you’re considering a practice name change, please know your search engine rankings may be negatively affected. At MyAdvice, we’re experts in healthcare SEO. Let us make sure the right patients are finding your site. Contact us for more information.