Dermatology businesses are no different from any other business in that they need as much online visibility as possible. You want to be seen online and you want to be found by quality leads in your local area that are searching for your services.
There are a lot of things you can do to build your online presence and to ensure you can be found on local search, but for the time they take, most of them don’t cost anything. So short of using paid ads for instant visibility, what is the best thing you can do for your dermatology business?
The answer is to get your business to appear in the Google Map Pack. Again, it’s free, but it takes a lot of work. The good news is that every step you take to get yourself closer to appearing in the Map Pack results also improves your online presence and increases your visibility, so it’s a win-win.
Read on for our top Google Map Pack strategies for dermatologists.
Understanding the Google Map Pack
If you’re not familiar with it, the first question you probably have is “What is the Google Map Pack?”
Go to Google Maps and type in “dermatology clinic.” You’ll see a local map of your area and either on the side or just below the map, you might get a couple of sponsored (paid) listings for clinics. Just below those paid listings, is the Map Pack. It’s a short list of what Google considers to be the best dermatology clinic results in the area and these listings appear above the organic listings in Google.
Even better, a Map Pack listing provides a great deal of information to searchers. Even without clicking through to the full listing, people can see your opening hours, contact details, a featured image, your review rating, and sometimes, review excerpts, too. That can be more than enough to get people to call you in its own right. But if they want more information, when they click your Map Pack listing, it takes them straight through to your Google Business Profile and all the information you’ve provided there.
Sounds great, doesn’t it? It’s certainly a high-visibility listing with a lot of helpful information for your potential clients, and it’s likely to bring you a lot of fresh, qualified leads. But there’s a problem. You can’t buy your way into a Map Pack listing. You have to put in the work.
Run, don’t walk, to Google, if you haven’t already claimed your Google Business Profile. You’re going to need it.
How do you improve your ranking in Google’s Map Pack?
If you guessed that you need to improve your overall online presence to have a chance of gaining a Map Pack place, then you’d be right. Obviously, as we said earlier, that’s not ever a bad thing, and it will do your business a lot of good anyway, so follow our Google Map Pack strategies for dermatologists below and hopefully, it’ll soon be your name in lights on the Map Pack.
1. Optimized Google Business Profile
You must have a Google Business Profile (GBP) to have any chance of being listed in the Map Pack. However, it’s not enough to just claim your profile, you also have to optimize it fully and keep it up-to-date and engaging.
How do you optimize your GBP? Fill in every section with content! Each section that Google has given you is there for a reason, and you need to fill it with high-quality, well-keyworded copy written in your brand voice.
While it might be tempting to boast about your awards and how long you’ve been in business, your “about” section isn’t actually for you, odd though that might seem. Your “about” section is there to inform potential clients and persuade them that they want to at least enquire about your business and, preferably, book. Keep that in mind and write what you think your clients will want to hear from what you already know about them.
Fill in your Q&A section, your services, and choose the right categories for your business. Fill in your full contact details and your opening hours. Add everything you think potential clients would want to know.
Make your page attractive with high-quality images that show off your practice at its best. You can also include an image or two of the outside of your practice as it helps new clients find it more easily on their first visit.
What people want to see here is a thriving and interesting place, with all the information they need and helpful answers to their questions. They want to see that it’s regularly updated and that it’s well worth coming back and checking it out again because there’s always something new to be found.
Your overall star rating is important on your GBP as that shows on the Map Pack listing even before anyone clicks through to your full profile, but you need a plan in place to get high-quality reviews regularly and consistently. People only tend to take notice of the most recent reviews on your page. It’s understandable as they want to know what your practice is like now, before they book, not what people were saying several years ago.
Here are the other factors that are important:
- Attributes added
- Number of reviews the person linked to their Google profile
- Photos uploaded
- Description of review
Basically, the more reviews you have and the higher your star rating, the more of a chance you have of appearing in the Map Pack.
3. Business Directories
When building your online presence, you need to build the number of citations you have and the more citation, the stronger your online presence will be. A citation is simply a listing of your NAP (Name, Address, Phone number) on a site that isn’t your own, so business directories come in handy with this.
You can sign your business up to as many directories as you like, and the more the better. Go for the main ones, such as Yelp and Angi, but don’t forget smaller sites, such as any specific dermatology directories and your local chamber of commerce. You’ll find that as you add your details to the main business directories, you’ll start to appear on even more as there are some directories that work by taking details from other sites.
When filling in your NAP on these sites, please be careful. Every listing of your NAP must be the same and it must be accurate. You can’t put your phone number in with the area code on one site and then without it on another, for example. What this does is cause potential confusion for customers, but also for Google, and then Google’s algorithm may lower your ranking because of it.
Surefire Local’s marketing software has a solution for this. Instead of having to update every directory by hand, you can use our software to update your GBP and over 80 business directories all at once. Type your information in once and with a few clicks, you’re done, thus ensuring accuracy across as many business directories as possible.
We talked about optimizing your GBP earlier and it’s equally important to do the same with your business directories and to keep updating them regularly with your news, special offers, and more. Just do the same as before – type your information once into our software and we’ll update your directories for you.
4. Website SEO
Your website is your home on the internet. It represents your business and might be the first and only impression people have of you, so it’s got to be modern, clean, fresh, and easy to navigate. It should be clear what path you want people to take through the site and what you want them to do. And it should be easy for people to find what they want and contact you when they’re ready.
It must also be mobile responsive and quick loading. So many people shop and book on their phones now that you’d be missing out on a lot of traffic if your site doesn’t work on smartphones. Not to mention Google expects that your site will work on mobile and other devices. Slow-loading websites are another no-no. Nobody will wait more than 3 or 4 seconds to see what your website says when they could already have answers from a competitor in less time.
Make sure your site works beautifully and gives your potential clients what they need.
It’s also important to ensure you’re researching and adding good keywords, including local keywords and long tail keywords so that you can be found in the search results. Add your keywords to your image descriptions, and ensure you use your main keyword in your H1 heading and in at least one subheading. Use your main keyword in your meta title and description and in the first paragraph of your copy. Then use your main keyword and related keywords naturally throughout your copy. Keep in mind that you’re writing for people first and the search engines second, but don’t miss out on adding keywords where you can without it sounding forced or overdone.
5. Community Engagement
Your job is only partially done once you have optimized your Google Business Profile and the rest of your online presence. It’s important to encourage your existing and potential customers to visit your Google profile, engage and ask questions, upload their own photos, and write reviews.
Think about what that will look like to new potential customers when they see such a full and interesting profile.
You also need to engage with people, to respond to their questions, comments, and reviews. People want to feel heard and important, and they love to see businesses joining in and responding to them.
The combination of all of these steps will build your online presence, build your brand, increase your visibility, and give you the best possible chance of appearing in the Google Map Pack listings.
Attend a Surefire Local Marketing Platform demo
We did warn you that this can be a lot of work. There are so many moving parts to building an online presence, but we can help take some of the load and at least some of the tasks off your to-do list.
Surefire Local provides professional business intelligence marketing software that can help you with every aspect of building your online presence. And we can also help you manage your most important online marketing activities within one platform.
Post to and update your Google Business Profile and all of your online business directories at once with our software, request reviews, follow up, and respond to them from your easy-to-use dashboard, engage with your visitors quickly and easily.
And take some of the marketing load away by using our platform to manage your email marketing, social media marketing, your content marketing, paid ads, and far more. Along with superb statistics and reports to always keep you up to date on how your marketing is working for you. Why not book a demo with our team and see how we can help?