Hall Blog Article

Is your blogging actually helping your website?

June 24, 2013
Done wrong, blogging can hurt, not help, your website.

The word is out that blogging is a great way to boost your Google rankings. If you are blogging for your website, congratulations. You’re obviously one of the few dentists “in the know.” However, if you use an outside service to manage your blogging, you need to read this!

As Google has continued to refine its algorithm, it is no longer good enough to just have a blog. The blog needs to provide useful, interesting, and unique content. It is entirely possible that a blog that is done incorrectly could provide no value at all, or could even penalize your website.

True story:

We recently brought on a new client who was using an outside marketing agency to promote his dental practice, and this included blogging services. Their blog was being hosted on Blogspot. As we set up this dentist’s new website, we received a request from the blogging service asking if they could embed the blog in the site. Normally, we try to accommodate those types of requests. An embedded blog is an excellent way to add strength to a website.

Before we embedded this blog, however, we decided to check on the quality of the posting this company was doing for him. Since Google has been placing more emphasis recently on detecting whether or not content is useful and engaging to readers, we wanted to check to see if the posts from this company were actually interesting.

It turned out they were. However, what we discovered was actually worse. This company was using stock blog posts for each of its clients. While having this stock content on an outside blog is completely useless, embedding it in the dentist’s website would have brought penalties from search engines.

When we discover bloggers who recycle their posts, we become very frustrated because the clients are throwing away their money. Google is looking for high quality original content. If the content is valuable, then your website’s pages will elevate in rankings for the related search terms. But if the content is stock, Google views it as less than worthless and actually penalizes the blog for what it perceives as plagiarism.

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How to check up on your blogger

Do you want to know if your blogger is wasting your money? If so, it takes less than one minute. Here’s how to check if your blog posts are recycled:

1. First, visit your blog and find a sentence or portion of a sentence that you think will be unique.
2. Copy and paste it into your browser search bar, and be sure to add quote marks around the sentence.
3. Hit enter to see the search results. If you see more than one result, you’ll know your blog post has been recycled.

When we followed these steps for this client, we actually ended up laughing because the sentence we chose had a glaring typo. It said, “This jargon has a purpsoe as it allows professionals to communicate clearly with each other on the same basis.” The same sentence, with the same typo, was showing up in 112 search results in Google.

Check out these search results. Using this stock post was a handy way for this agency to keep its writing costs down. However, this post provides no value whatsoever to the 112 dentists who have it in their blog.

Keys to effective blogging

There are three keys to having an effective blog, and you need to be sure that your blogger is doing each of them:

  1. The blog needs to be embedded in your website. This is the only way to get the full strength of the blog to redound to your website.
  2. Blog content needs to be interesting and useful. Regurgitating basic dental information provides little usefulness. The days are over when simply posting frequently was enough to boost your website. Some thought and effort needs to be put into what is said.
  3. Finally, content needs to be unique. If it isn’t, it will actually cause your website to be penalized.

Dr. David A. Hall is the founder and President of Infinity Dental Web, a dental Internet marketing company in Mesa, Arizona.