Here at Beyond Indigo Pets, we often hear the same questions over and over. Digital marketing is complicated, overwhelming, and sometimes a person just wants to know WHY he or she is jumping through hoops to be seen and used on the Internet platforms. We are here to help you out with at least six common questions about marketing and provide the answers. Let’s dig in!

1. Why Am I Not Ranking First on Google/Maps?

Digital Marketing is very fickle, especially when Google is involved. Unfortunately, if you do not rank on Google, you do not exist in the eyes of the Internet. In fact, when a Veterinary hospital conducts marketing, it is marketing to two audiences: clients and Google.

Think of Google as a person you really want to date, which means you need to make a good first impression (and might not get the chance for a second). Google is going to give your website the head-to-toe scan and look for the following:

  • Is the website up-to-date? Current? Unless it’s a costume party, anything that screams 1970s leisure suit needs to vamoose. Google wants to know that your website is sporting the latest threads (content) and is interesting and compelling to read. In addition, the content needs to be refreshed often, through a monthly blog, to keep Google interested. Nobody wants a boring date!
  • Connections on Google are important. These are called backlinks and internal links. Just like in dating, your friends matter. In Google speak, this means who you link to from your site and who links to you. Where does your site link internally? Broken links leading to crappy endings is a thumbs down in the Google World.
  • The latest software and devices are akin to the current trends in the dating world. If you walk to your date’s car and it’s held together with duct tape, you might start questioning the viability of a second date. Google feels the same way, especially when it’s the one developing and dishing out the newest software.
  • What’s “under the hood”? Have you ever heard of “catfishing” in the dating world? That means you’re shown one thing and someone entirely different shows up. The same can happen with a website. The outside is pretty, but “under the hood” (in the code), it’s a hot mess. Ongoing marketing makes sure the coding stays up-to-date with the 3,000 plus changes Google makes every year. It also ensures that all of the current requirements of Page Experience are implemented and all the tracking pixels to Facebook and other platforms are running and current. Plus, your digital marketing provider will be checking your Google Console for messages from Google. Google assumes you are checking there!
  • Age matters to Google. The longer a website has been on the Internet (with regularly updated content) plays a significant part in Google’s ranking algorithm. Authority Hacker did a study on the age of websites. They found the following:

“While the median age of the top ranked URL is somewhere between 3-5 years, the median age of the content on that page is only 7-8 months or less in most cases.

2. Why Isn’t My Practice Showing Up in the Top Spot Every Time I Search?

Google considers many factors when determining the order of search results, including the location of the searcher. Your website may not rank consistently well for a keyword in every search location or device. Don’t worry—this is a perfectly normal phenomenon. Your website may rank #1 more often if a prospective customer searches for your practice at five miles away vs. 10 miles away.

SEO tools that track rankings typically show average website rankings for a certain keyword within a given time period. It’s more important that your website averages #1 than for you to consistently see it there every time you search.

3. How Does Google Calculate My Review Average?

When it comes to digital marketing, it’s essential for potential clients to be able to find your website. Google compiles a variety of different factors to determine your rankability on its search engine results pages. One of these factors is your Google review average.

Google review scores, also known as Google Ratings, are based on user reviews and ratings submitted on Google Maps and Google Business Profile (né Google My Business). These scores help potential customers quickly understand the quality and reputation of a business. Several factors contribute to a business’s Google review score:

  • User ratings: Users can rate businesses on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. These individual ratings are averaged to calculate the overall score for a business.
  • Number of reviews: The total number of reviews a business has received on Google also plays a role in its review score. A higher number of reviews generally indicates a more established and well-known business.
  • Review content: The text of the reviews can impact how users perceive a business. Positive and detailed reviews can help reinforce a high rating, while negative reviews can undermine it.
  • Review recency: More recent reviews may carry more weight in the overall score, as they provide a better indication of a business’ current performance and reputation.
  • Reviewer reputation: Some users have more influence on Google Maps and Google Business Profile due to their activity and engagement on the platform. Reviews from these “Local Guides” or users with a higher level of contributions might be more impactful on a business’ score.

4. How Often Do I Need to Blog?

Another factor Google likes is consistent new content on websites. Blogging is an effective way to add new content to keep your site fresh. Clients often ask us how often they need to blog, and the answer is: it depends. When it comes to content, the more the better. It’s important to keep in mind, however, that the content needs to be well written and informative. If you don’t have the time to devote to penning multiple blogs per month, one is enough (or we can write them for you). When trying to decide how many blogs to produce in a month, keep the things below in mind.

  • Unique topics: Finding unique topics that provide more information about a topic than your competitors is more important than writing as many blogs as possible.
  • Goals: If you want to drastically increase your website traffic, you should write more blogs per month (aim for four). If you’re more focused on setting yourself up as an industry expert, then you should be posting at least one blog per month.
  • SEO: If you’re going to go through the effort of writing blogs, then you want to be sure they help your website’s performance. Incorporating geo tags and keywords helps you get the most out of each blog you post. If you don’t have time to incorporate these into multiple blogs, then it might be better to stick to one or two a month.

5. How Often (and What) Should I Post on Social Media?

Some Veterinary practices post every day and some post three times per week. Your social media strategy should be to determine what your audience engages with most on which days and times. Some Veterinary practices won’t see the same engagement posting every day that a practice will see posting just a few times per week. Data collection can help you find the “sweet spot” for how often to post.

As far as content to post, we recommend a mixture of the following:

  • Pictures of client’s pets
  • Pictures of staff caring for pets
  • Pet care tips
  • Reminders of services—especially when its seasonally relevant, like flea/tick preventives in spring and summer
  • Pet holidays
  • Hour changes/closure for inclement weather
  • Educational articles or infographics (especially those with your branding)

6. How Much Should I Spend on Advertisements?

Determining your ad spend budget is one of the most important factors of digital advertising. If you set the budget too low, then you might be missing out on good leads. If you set it too high before you have a good understanding of your target audience, however, you could be wasting money.

The budget required for ads may fluctuate depending on goals, time of year, and location. A Google ad campaign focused on generating calls and website form submissions should start at a minimum of $150/month or $5/day. When determining your budget, consider your practice’s average client transaction. If just one click/call converts into a new client, you may have already paid for your campaign. Smaller budgets can then be increased according to how many new clients/appointments you can handle.

If you have more marketing questions that are nagging the edges of your brain, feel free to reach out to us at We love to educate and empower people on how the marketing world online spins. Or, if you are going to be at the Western Reserve Conference, please stop by our booth at 1817!