• What is SEO?
  • SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. The major goals are to ensure your website is being indexed by search engines and to increase the ranking of your website over time.

  • How do search engines rank websites?
  • Search engines rank websites based on a combination of Relevancy, Authority, and Popularity.

    Relevancy has to do with the actual content on your website. Search engines will crawl your website to analyze the provided content, and match search terms to your content wherever relevant.

    Authority is the level of trust given to a website or webpage. Search engines use an algorithm with multiple factors and signals to determine the authority of a webpage or website.

    Popularity is a combination of several factors, including the number of links that point to your website, and social signals.

  • When do I start getting billed?
  • Billing for Sesame SEO starts the day it launches. You should have received a notification by email that your service has launched. If you did not receive your launch email but are receiving reports, please email with an updated email address and we’ll send it to you again.

  • What does my SEO Specialist do every month?
  • Sesame SEO monitors and maintains your practice’s online presence. Each month, your SEO specialist will take a look at your website’s ranking and traffic to determine the effectiveness of previous strategies, and will develop and implement new SEO strategies for the coming months.

  • How long will it take for SEO to start “working”?
  • Although there is no specific time frame, it generally takes 3 to 6 months for major improvements in SEO to be seen.

  • Why am I not ranking?
  • If under 6 months: Google’s crawl process is algorithmic; computer programs determine which sites to crawl, how often, and how many pages to fetch from each site. This means that some changes to your website may not be indexed for several weeks at a time.

    For this reason, the service is designed as a monthly check with quarterly milestones, so we can effectively track the changes made to your website and measure what is working effectively.

    If over 6 months: We absolutely agree that you should be seeing more from this service. Since your SEO Specialist monitors your ranking every month, he or she is already aware of your current ranking and is diligently working on strategies to help improve it.

    Let’s set up an appointment with your SEO Specialist when you receive your next quarterly report. Your SEO specialist will cover the strategies that are being implemented to help improve your ranking and will review the SEO strategies to be implemented in the months to come.

  • What kind of information should I expect during my quarterly call?
  • During your Quarterly call, your SEO Specialist will:

    1. Review the optimization strategies that were implemented during the previous three months.
    2. Review the results of those strategies.
    3. Answer any questions you may have about the reporting.
    4. Provide detailed SEO strategies for the next three months.

  • How do I schedule a quarterly call with my SEO Specialist?
  • When you receive your next quarterly report, email, and your SEO Specialist will connect with you to schedule a time to review your service.

  • What if I prefer talking with my SEO Specialist every month?
  • We can set this up for you. However, keep in mind it will take time away from your allotted monthly SEO time. We charge $125 per hour if you go over your allotted time each month, so we suggest keeping communications with your SEO Specialist to a minimum so that person can spend the most time optimizing your website.

  • What if my SEO Specialist needs more than an hour to implement current SEO strategies?
  • Your SEO Specialist will never charge you extra or go over your allotted time without your approval. If your SEO Specialist feels extra SEO work needs to be done during a particular month, he or she will review it with you during your quarterly call and ask for your approval.

  • What is the cost/rate for SEO work that exceeds the allotted SEO time per month?
  • $125 per additional hour

  • How can I tell which keyterms you are targeting?
  • The keywords we are targeting can be found on the first page of your Quarterly Report in the “Ranking Report” section.

  • How can I optimize my website for more keywords?
  • During your quarterly call, let your SEO Specialist know about additional keywords you would like to target. That way your SEO Specialist can determine the best strategy to optimize your website for those terms.

  • What should I expect when targeting towns/cities/neighborhoods I’m not located in?
  • When it comes to local SEO, Google will typically give your website priority ranking in towns/cities/neighborhoods you are actually located in. This is because the more times your practice name, address, and phone number are listed on the web, the easier Google can validate that you are actually located there.

    When it tries to target towns/cities/neighborhoods you are not located in, Google can get confused, which might negatively affect your ranking.

    For optimizing your website, your SEO Specialist’s main focus will be to optimize for the areas you are actually located in. During your next quarterly call, talk to your SEO specialist about the best strategy to target areas you are not located in.

  • My ranking keeps moving up and down 1 or 2 positions; what’s going on?
  • A good SEO specialist will never guarantee that a website will always be #1 in search results, because algorithms change constantly. If you notice your ranking is moving up and down a few positions month after month, it could be due to one of the following reasons:

    1. Google testing – Google is in the process of testing the relative positions of websites in your area to determine which is the better one. This is one of the main reasons a SEO Specialist can never guarantee your site will always be #1 in search results.
    2. Google personalized results - If you are logged into a Google Account and have clicked on your website more than a few times, Google’s personalized results will most likely place your website as the #1 result. If you log out of your Google Account, you may notice a drop in your ranking.
    3. Your IP address – Google generally displays local results based on the location of your computer. For example, if you are searching for a dentist in Seattle, WA and your computer is located in Bellevue, WA, you may see local results based on the dentists that are closest to your computer. Make sure you change the location of your search to receive more accurate results.
    4. A SEO consultant stopped by and told me the optimization of my website is poor and wants to apply a significant amount of changes. Why haven't these been done yet?

    Sesame Communications utilizes a variety of resources to keep our SEO Specialists up to date on the current local SEO strategies. Since our main focus is in the dental and orthodontic industry, we know what works and what doesn’t.

    Keep in mind there is a good chance we will be making some of those changes in the months to come. If you would like your SEO Specialist to review the suggestions made by an outside consulting company, we’d be happy to set up a separate consultation call at $125 per hour.

    Otherwise, we’ll continue to focus on the current SEO strategies that we know will make the biggest impact on your results.

  • What if you are doing Sesame SEO for competitors in my area?
  • We have a team of specialists that work on the SEO for each website. All of the work we do is intended to play to your website’s particular strengths and help Google and other search engines read and display your content better. During your quarterly call, you can talk to your SEO Specialist about additional strategies or services that could help your practice stand out from your competition.

  • There is an issue with my Google Plus Local listing; what do I do?
  • Since we look at your Google Plus local once a month, you may notice an error before we do. If you notice an error on your Google Places page, please email, and it will be directed to your SEO Specialist. Your SEO Specialist will report the error to Google using the “Report an Error” tool. Please note that it can take Google several weeks to fix an issue once it is reported, though. Your SEO Specialist will continue to report the error each month until it is corrected.

  • Where are my reviews?
  • Google made a recent update to their Places platform. It no longer displays third-party reviews (such as Demand Force, Citysearch, etc.) and is putting more focus on reviews written directly on your Google Plus Local page. We can supply a review button on your website, a QR code to your Places/Local page, or an email blast to help increase the number of Google reviews!

    You can talk to your SEO Specialist about Google reviews during your next quarterly call. (Due to certain state and Canada laws, we do not currently offer these tools to practices in Texas and Canada.)

  • What happens if someone writes a negative review/comment about me?
  • The best strategy is to get more positive reviews on that particular site to drown out the negative one. The next best step is to claim that particular listing as the owner (if it doesn’t cost money on that site) and respond to the review in a professional manner. Taking the time to respond to a negative review shows you care about your patients and are willing to address their issues. If you need the login info to your Google Plus Local account in order to respond to a negative review, email

  • Can we read the reviews first before they are posted?
  • Anyone can go online to one of the various review sites and write a review about you and your practice. You cannot approve or deny reviews. If you feel the reviews are completely inappropriate, you can flag them as inappropriate and wait for the review sites to analyze your claim. Please note this process can take several weeks.

  • We received a Google (or Bing) PIN, who do I send it to?
  • Send it to and we will take it from there.

  • Why did Google call/email me to say there is an issue with my Google Places listing?
  • Google just launched a new product called Google Adwords Express. Google Adwords Express allows you to set a monthly budget to display your Google Places listing. Google’s strategy to sell Google Adwords Express is to email or call practices to let them know there is an “issue” with their Google Places page, but directs them to a Google Sales Associate. It will be up to your practice to decide if it’s worth purchasing.

  • What’s included in my monthly report?
  • The Monthly Report summarizes traffic to your website from search engines. It features information that includes how many people visited your website from searches, how long they stayed on your website, how many pages they viewed, and what they typed in the search engines to get there.

  • What’s included in my quarterly report?
  • The Quarterly Report covers this same information over a three-month period. It also summarizes the overall traffic on your website. In addition, it contains a ranking summary that goes over how your website is ranking for specific search phrases, referral traffic, and how that has changed over the course of the service.

  • What is bounce rate?
  • Bounce rate is the percentage of your visitors that leave your website without clicking on anything else during a 30-minute session, typically through the “back” button. For dental and orthodontic websites it’s very common to see a high bounce rate, because many people are looking only for a phone number or address.

  • What does “not provided” mean?
  • Not provided is when users are signed in to their Google account (Gmail, Google+, YouTube, etc.) and visit your site from an organic Google search.

  • Why is traffic down?
  • Fluctuations in traffic to your website are normal from month to month, based on seasonal traffic. If these trends continue, we’ll take a look at the analytics and try to figure out what’s going on.

  • Have additional questions?
  • If you have additional questions about general SEO strategies, keyword tracking, or reporting, we recommend compiling them and reviewing them with your SEO Specialist during your quarterly call.

    However, if you need immediate assistance, please email

  • What is the spam traffic on my report?
  • We’ve noticed an alarming trend of referral spam creeping into Search reports. Referral spam is the practice of sending bogus referral traffic to a website or product. These numbers inflate your reporting and don’t provide an accurate assessment of valuable data. Referral spam is relatively harmless, and we are pro-actively blocking spam sites as we discover them. However, some slip through our filters, and we are addressing them as best we can.

  • How do I get more Google My Business reviews?
  • Continuously encourage your patients to review your practice. Even if they don’t do so the first time, the chance of them reviewing your practice increases each time they are reminded. Also, please be sure to instruct them to complete their review once they leave the office. Reviews submitted in or near your office location may be discredited by Google as possible review fraud.

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    Still have questions?

    Our Search Team is available Monday through Friday, from 8:00 AM until 4:00 PM Pacific. You can reach the Social team at 866.856.2050 ext. 1 and the SEO team at 866.856.2050 ext. 2 or send us an email at