In the constantly evolving world of internet marketing, the only thing you can be sure of is that you can never be sure what Google is looking for on a daily basis as part of its search algorithm. That being said, one thing that Google indexes all the time and which they regard as very important is internet or business directories. Having consistent and correct information about your practice, and preventing incorrect information from being incorporated into your directories is of the utmost importance.
There are over seventy internet directories that list doctors. Some of them are very familiar like Facebook, Yelp, Google and Yahoo while others are much less well known. Business directories include the information such as "Office Name", "Address", "Phone #", "Web Address" and "Office Hours" to name a few. Google wants all directories to have the exact same information.
Even the smallest discrepancies will cause business directory listing errors. Google hates these errors and will drop the practice in search if they exist. The problem is that directories add listing information robotically (“bots”) and don’t care if the information is correct or if it matches other directories.
In order to correct business listing or directory errors and maintain them in their correct form it is incumbent upon your internet marketing provider to:
- Place correct and matching information about you and your practice on all these directories and correct any mistakes that may be present currently.
- Once the corrections are made it is imperative to lock in these changes by a system of “Duplicate Suppression” - a continuous locking system which prevents the directories from collecting and blindly auto posting incorrect information it finds about the practice on the internet (such as an old address).
It is almost impossible for a doctor and/or his/her staff to make all of these corrections on their own since directories must be monitored on a continuous basis. The simplest way to deal with the problem of business directory errors is by using a company that can run a scan of your current business directories, make corrections and then lock the directories to prevent wrong information from being picked up by these directories.
While knowing exactly what Google looks for on a daily basis is a challenge, correcting directory listings, which is among Google’s most important indices, is a task which can be done relatively easily and which needs to be performed in order to enhance search placement.
To run a scan of your current business directories to check for errors click on the link below:
Dr Joshua Gindea is the Executive VP and co-founder of Doctorsinternet.com a company which manages a doctor's online persona, reputation, website, social media and search placement.