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Is Your Business at the Mercy of the Almighty Google?

posted by Michael Epps Utley Michael Epps Utley
Goepps nashville tn google search engine 300x200

It’s no secret that Google’s ranking algorithms are constantly changing and that it’s important to keep up with the evolution. However, in addition to having up-to-date strategies, it’s just as important to take precautionary measures when the tides of Google turn.


Perhaps it’s never occurred to you that you need protection from Google. That’s understandable. After all, much of search engine optimization involves working with search engines to achieve high rankings. Yet, there’s actually a need for caution, which is illustrated very well by the recent experience of a Tennessee-based company.

On August 1st, Google made significant changes to its health and wellness search algorithms. Big changes have big impacts, as many companies including AAC Holdings learned. In the following quarter, between July and September, the addiction treatment company took a major hit.

In just three months, it saw a net loss of $11.5 million, not to mention a patient census drop of 10%. Call center activity declined by 30% and, ultimately, the company lost a hefty 40% of its value…all of because of the changes to Google’s ranking algorithm. That’s quite a price to pay, right?

Yet, the reality is that this disaster, which the CEO likened to being hit by a meteorite, was avoidable. The damage could have been minimized greatly had the company not been so dependent on Google. The lesson?

You need a fallback plan that you can implement quickly if and when things take a turn for the worst. This is true whether you’re in the healthcare industry or not. Without one, you’re at the mercy of Google, which, at any moment, can put you into a position that’s difficult to get out of. What might that fallback plan be, though? Something independent of Google, of course…or anything out of your control, for that matter.


If growing your email list is not currently a priority for you, it certainly should be. Why? Because it enables you to establish and maintain contact with potential clients and customers who’ve shown an interest in what you do or offer. If Google then updates its search algorithms, you can continue to market your business effectively via email, while reworking your search engine optimization strategy.

If, for example, your rankings suffer, you won’t be completely reliant on a dwindling source of website traffic and the resulting conversions. If you’re not already doing so, you should work to build your email list steadily. After all, the time to do this is not after a major change threatens your business. You must be prepared beforehand to successfully use email marketing as your plan B.


Do you believe that your business has been affected negatively by Google’s Medic Update or another algorithm change? Or do you simply want to be prepared for any future changes that could impact you? In either case, we’d be happy to help you get on the road either to recovery or prevention! Request a consultation today!

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