One of the most important tools for your practice is one that you might not even know exists. Google My Business is a free tool from - you guessed it - Google that allows business owners to take control over how their businesses appear in internet searches, helping bring in new customers. You can update both from both desktop and mobile devices - there’s an app for that! So, just what is Google My Business?
If you’ve ever searched Google for, say, “Mexican restaurants near me” online, you’ve seen the corresponding map that pops up showing local results. Each of those businesses has a Google My Business profile that pops up when you click on it, providing you with the information you need to make an informed decision about which restaurant is the most likely to have great tacos. By now you’re probably wondering how can you leverage Google My Business to elevate your practice and drive new clients, so we’ll spell it out for you in a few simple steps.
Step 1: Verify Your Practice
The first step to getting your practice set up on Google My Business is to verify your practice online. Create a Google My Business account and begin by entering the address at which your practice is located. It’s recommended to use a business email address when you’re setting up your account because this is the email address that will appear to prospective customers when they click on your profile. Verifying your practice is critical because customers are statistically twice as likely to consider a business reputable when it has been verified. To verify that you actually own your practice, Google will send a postcard to your business address, allow you to verify your listing by phone, or allow you to verify your listing via email. This may take a few days, so be patient! It’s worth it.
Step 2: Add Contact Information
After verifying your practice, you’ll be able to add the name of your practice, a phone number, website, and your hours of operation. With the ease of the mobile app, you can change this information as often as you need to, meaning you can account for things like holidays, vacations, and emergencies with just a few taps on your phone. The more accurate the information on your profile is, the more likely you are to draw in new customers - take advantage of it!
Step 3: Add Original Content Consistently
You’ve got the basics taken care of - now’s your chance to really sell your practice! Give potential clients as much information about your practice as possible. Who are your physicians? What does your office look like? What unique technologies or procedures do you have to offer that other practices may not have? As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words, and the statistics back it up. Google reports that businesses with photos see 35 percent more clicks to their website, and potential customers are 42 percent more likely to request driving directions to a business that displays photos, so it’s a big deal! Google My Business also allows you to post videos, event information, promotions, and many other types of original content with the click of a button. It’s important to update your profile consistently, so make sure you don’t let your photos and content get stale. Keep customers coming back to see what’s new!
Step 4: Encourage Patient Reviews
As a business owner, you know that nothing is more effective at bringing in new clients than positive referrals and reviews. When you add original content to Google My Business, you can use graphics requesting patient reviews, encouraging them to leave feedback about their experience that can help you improve your practice and reach new customers. However, one of the best ways to encourage reviews from your existing customers is to respond to every review that is posted. By thanking positive reviewers for taking the time to leave feedback and by taking negative reviews seriously and showing an attempt to rectify the problem, you’ll show potential customers that you care about what they think - and that matters, especially for physicians!
No matter what type of business you have, Google My Business can help your business appear more frequently in local searches, improve visibility, and drive customers when used properly. Take advantage of this free tool and watch your practice grow!
Not sure how to setup your Google My Business account for optimal exposure, book a consultation today.