I have permission to post a real-life horror story from a Dental Practice that I’ve been helping with their Google Local problems. (FYI Google local is now called Google Places) This practice was #1 on Google local and they were getting LOTS of new patients. Then they toppled to 7th place and felt a big impact in the drop off of new patient calls and clicks to their main website!

BACKGROUND: Dr. Pauley is retired from practice now and runs the office and handles all of the Internet marketing. His wife and daughter are the Dentists. Brookside Dental in Bellevue Washington is a great practice that specializes in Cosmetic Dentistry.

Dr. Pauley previously worked with some guru that wrote a book about how to get to the top of Google local. That’s who originally helped him optimize his Places page. Now he is working with another company that specializes in Google local. Once he got to the top, he realized how much of an impact it made for the practice.

COPIED VERBATIM from Dr. Pauley, who commented on my blog in reply to THIS IMPORTANT POST about why Dentists need to Claim and keep checking their Google Place Page (Google local listing).

Dr Pauley wrote on June 19th

Linda, you have a very informative website blog. I found you when you started following us on Twitter (Bellevuedentist). I intend to be a regular reader of your blog, because your information is good.

The horror stories about dental websites are true (others profession’s websites too I am sure). We recently went from #1 in Google Local rankings to #7 — I guess it is good that we still show up there. Google split us into several different listings as you mention. Our verified dentistry website is the #7 (previously #1) but they haven’t combined the listings yet as we have requested and that is what is hurting us I think. By splitting us they also split our patient testimonials, including all of our 5-star Yelp testimonials which went to one of the unverified sites as well as several 5-star listings from Kuduz, insiderpages, and citysearch. Very frustrating!!! This may have hurt our organic search position also, but I am not sure. We have been #1 in organic listings for our main search terms for two years or more, but coinsiding with the Local drop we have dropped to #2 and #3 listings in organic search. Not a huge drop, but it leaves some questions to be addressed. Again thanks for the good info on your blog.

So their practice was #1 for about a year then dropped to #7 due to Google bugs. After doing some background research for him, I found Google had created a total of 5 rogue listings.

Here are 3 of their 5 listings in Google maps. The unclaimed ROGUE Patricia Pauley listing STOLE 28 reviews from the main listing (Brookside Dental), which was one of MANY factors that caused them to lose ranking.

Multiple listings are against the Google TOS, even when Google themselves creates the problem. PLUS the duplicates had stolen some of his reviews and split up his trust points so he lost rankings.

Additionally one of the duplicate listings HIJACKED the link to his practice web site and replaced it with a link to someone else’s site. Potentially stealing his traffic.

Here is the BOGUS listing Google created AT THEIR ADDRESS with THEIR PHONE, for a Dentist that QUIT WORKING THERE 2 YEARS AGO.

Again, this Google created, incorrect listing HIJACKED the link to their site.
The LINK extrememakeovers-washington.com is not even their site. Patients clicking THEIR listing would be taken to some no-name directory site that does not even mention Brookside Dental or any of their Dentists!

Note: you can see part of this post, direct from the Doctor at the 1st comment in this important post: Why Dentists need to CLAIM and DoubleCheck Google Places Page and Local Listing TODAY
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So there’s a real life story from a Dentist about why you need to check your Google local Place page.

Have you checked your Google ranking and Place page today???

CHECK YOUR PLACE PAGE – Check your name, address, phone, website and categories and be sure to check for duplicates and rogue listings.

To check for duplicate listings go to Google maps (not regular search) and search maps for your phone # in this format: (555) 555-1234. Then check your address in maps, then check your name + city in maps.

Let me know if anyone has questions, problems with duplicate or hijacked listings or needs assistance in a competitive Dental market to get to the TOP! I’m always happy to help!