Google’s updates could cause your website to be lost in space
After a period of relative calm at Google, it looks like things are about to heat up again. If experts and media reports are to be believed, the search giant’s “Penguin” updates to its algorithm have the potential to impact the websites of individual medical practitioners and other small businesses.
The first Penguin update to Google’s algorithm was launched in April 2012 to go after websites that Google deemed to be guilty of spamming. Today, the algorithm continues to search the Internet for “unnatural or manipulative” links, especially those that appear to have been purchased.
So far, Google’s flightless seabird has only hunted big fish, i.e. websites with 80 percent “manipulative” links. But this is set to change. Those in the know believe Google is now going after smaller prey — sites it deems to have 50 percent or even less of these links.
Keeping the Penguin at Bay
How do you ward off Google’s predatory algorithm?
Start by installing Google Webmaster Tools (GWT) immediately. This invaluable tool can actually send you a warning if it determines that your website has too many unnatural links. The warning may inform you that some of your inbound links (links from other sites to your site) violate Google’s webmaster guidelines and will recommend removing them. Google is aware that some of these links are not under your control. Importantly, in case you are able to remove any of the links, the warning will instruct you to submit a reconsideration request detailing what you did.
One thing you can do on your own is to look at “back-links” to your website and see if many of them (400, for example) are from the same site. Also look for use of the same words in the text of the links — that is, numerous links that say “Dallas LASIK” or “New York liposuction.” Neither of these patterns can occur in a “natural” manner, and Google knows it. Both will put you in the Penguin’s crosshairs.
It is also imperative that you cease purchasing links, especially discount packages of links. These links look too good to be true and that’s exactly what they are. Instead, do your due diligence to acquire real links. Start by mining your contacts. For example, if you do a radio or TV interview, ask the station for a link. If you do volunteer work, ask for a link from the charity. Also ask for links from other professionals you know in your field, and from organizations you belong to.
Last but not least, if you work with an SEO company, find out where the links they obtain on your behalf are coming from and inform them immediately if you or your marketing staff have purchased/obtained links on your own.
Links are an incredibly important factor in the ranking of your website. Make sure yours aren’t attracting Google’s ravenous Penguin. Otherwise, your website may end up lost in (cyber) space.
Ask the experts
Q My website rankings are going up and down for my target keywords (e.g. procedure + location). Should I be concerned?
A No, Google is constantly changing its algorithm, and your website rankings may change in step. Rankings no longer go straight up after SEO is initiated; they bounce around and trend upward over time.
Maximize Your Internet Strategy
Come by the Ceatus booth for a FREE website evalution!
San Francisco, CA
We here at Ceatus can’t wait to attend CDA Presents in the beautiful city of San Francisco! The CDA Presents Fall meeting brings dental experts, top industry vendors and dynamic speakers together to unveil new dental technologies and procedures. Stop by Booth 720 to learn how to keep your practice at the forefront of Internet marketing and your industry!
Santa Fe Convention Center
Santa Fe, NM
Meet us in Santa Fe for the Breast Surgery & Body Contouring Symposium. For 28 years, this ASPS/ASAPS event has remained the premier meeting for aesthetic and reconstructive surgeons interested in expanding their knowledge while networking with other top surgeons. Join us for a free website review!
CEATUS Case Study of the Month
Ceatus Client “Dr. Z”New PPC strategy saves prominent surgeon $ and increases patient volume
Background: “Dr. Z” is a well-known Southern California plastic surgeon whose primary focus is rhinoplasty. He was spending a significant part of his advertising budget on pay-per-click advertising (PPC ads), but was unhappy with the results. His PPC ads, particularly his rhinoplasty ads, appeared in the third position or lower, but the cost per click was close $3.50.
Solution: Ceatus took over Dr. Z’s online marketing in late 2012, including his website design, SEO and PPC advertising. The Ceatus PPC team immediately evaluated his advertising strategy and made a number of changes. The advertising text, the range of geographic locations where his ads appeared, and the target URLs were changed to optimize the campaign. Also, low-performing key words and ad networks (such as AdSense) were removed.
Results: Ceatus was able to improve the overall advertising position, click-through rate and number of clicks, while at the same time lowering the monthly budget by 25%.
Average Click-through Rate Increased from .78% to .95%
Average Ad Position for Rhinoplasty Ads Improved from 2.6 to 1.6
Average Cost Per Click Fell from $3.47 to $3.27
Overall Clicks Increased by 22%
Dr. Z used the money he saved through Ceatus’ efforts to obtain profiles in the Ceatus patient referral networks, including the Consumer Guide to Plastic Surgery, Breast Implants 4 You and All About Facial Rejuvenation. Over the last six months, his referral network profiles have received more than 2,500 visitors and generated more than 100 patient email leads and phone calls. These leads were essentially generated for free from the budget saved in the PPC campaign.
Brewery & Distillery Tours
Drink up on a tour of these amazing purveyors of beer and whiskey!
Stone Brewery, Escondido, CA
San Diego’s reputation as the nation’s epicenter of craft beer owes much to the purveyor of such cheekily named brews as “Arrogant Bastard”: Stone Brewing Company. Each year over 50,000 people visit Stone to taste their latest concoctions and learn what makes their beer so sublime. Stone provides free brewery tours daily, which end with generous samples of their four core beers. Tours take place Monday through Friday at 12:00, 2:00, 4:00 and 6:00 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday at 12:00-6:00 p.m. on the hour. Tickets are distributed two hours before the tour and are limited to 25, so arrive early to secure your spot. 1999 Citracado Parkway; 760-471-4999; www.stonebrewing.com/tours/
Jack Daniel’s, Lynchburg, TN
Lynchburg, TN, may be a dry county, but don’t let that stop you from whetting your palate with the smooth caramel, vanilla and oak Tennessee whiskey at the Jack Daniel’s Distillery. Nearly a quarter of a million people make their way to Lynchburg every year, many on a pilgrimage to see the distillery where Jack Daniel’s Whiskey has been made for more than 150 years. A knowledgeable guide will accompany you on this fascinating tour, recounting the complete story of the famous whiskey. Chances are you’ll hear a story or two about “Mr. Jack” as well. Tours are offered on a first-come, first-served basis Monday through Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., except holidays. 182 Lynchburg Highway; 931-759-6357; www.jackdaniels.com/visit#tour
Samuel Adams, Boston, MA
Be a patriot by knocking down a cold Sam Adams in the birthplace of the American Revolution. Sam Adams is one of America’s original craft brewers and remains its largest. Take a tour of the brewery and learn all about Samuel Adams, American brewer and patriot. Experience the entire craft brewing process, taste the special malts and smell the Hallertau hops used to brew this special beer. And, of course, sample a few of Sam Adams’ award winning beers. Tours depart approximately every 45 minutes and last about one hour; Monday through Thursday 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., Fridays 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Saturdays 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. 30 Germania St; 617-368-5080; www.samueladams.com/brewery-and-craft/our-brewery
Maker’s Mark Distillery, Loretto, KY
Maker’s Mark has welcomed guests since 1952. Located on 650 acres in the heart of Kentucky (the distillery sits on 20 acres; the remaining land is a nature preserve), the distillery gets 100,000 visitors a year and offers a comprehensive look at the making of its two bourbons: original Maker’s Mark and the longer-aged Maker’s 46. Three tasting rooms in a functioning warehouse welcome guests, and tours cap off with a tasting and the opportunity to hand-dip a bottle in the bourbon’s signature red wax. Tours are Monday through Saturday, 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and Sundays, 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.; March through December, except on holidays. 3350 Burk Spring Rd.; 270-865-2099; www.makersmark.com/#!/distillery/visit-loretto
Full Sail Brewing Company, Hood River, OR
Perched on a bluff overlooking a gorge with majestic views of Mt. Hood, Full Sail Brewing Company and its specialists are currently mixing the ingredients for your next beer. Swing by and sample their award-winning brews, grab a bite, take a tour and soak up the view of the sailboarders and kite boarders which give the brewery its name. The Tasting Room and Pub is open daily from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. for lunch and dinner. Brewery tours are available free of charge, daily, 1:00-4:00 p.m. on the hour. 506 Columbia Street; 541-386-2247; www.fullsailbrewing.com/pub-tasting-room.cfm
George Washington’s Distillery & Gristmill, Mount Vernon, VA
Our first President may or may not have cut down the cherry tree, but one thing’s for sure: he made an excellent whiskey. Don’t miss the chance to taste and purchase George Washington’s original mash bill (60% rye, 35% corn, and 5% malted barley) made in his distillery at his stately home, Mount Vernon. At one point the distillery was the largest in America, producing 11,000 gallons of whiskey a year. You will be accompanied on your tour by costumed interpreters who will discuss 18th-century fermentation and distilling techniques and demonstrate how the boiler, mash tubs, and copper pot stills function. Tours take place daily, April 1 – October 31, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Entrance to the site is included in admission to George Washington’s Mount Vernon. 5514 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway; 703-780-2000; www.mountvernon.org/visit-his-estate/plan-your-visit/distillery-amp-gristmill