Optometrists need to see the world differently when it comes to marketing. Sure, you probably have a lot of repeat patients who come to you year after year to fulfill their needs when it comes to getting eye exams and purchasing glasses, but what happens when they move on to different pastures and you haven’t done your due diligence in terms of curating new patients on your own? Word-of-mouth advertising and referrals are great, but sometimes, those wells can run dry quickly if you’re not feeding your funnel through other sources.
This is where Google My Business for optometrists can come into play when you’re planning your marketing tactics. With this free-to-use tool, you’ll soon be finding patients who need your services without much effort. Sure, it takes a little time and energy to set up your account and get your profile looking good, but once you’re established, you just need to pay attention to reviews and metrics (and make sure you update your Posts once in a while). If you’re not sure what we’re talking about, that’s okay! Stay tuned to learn everything you need to know about Google My Business for optometrists!
How Does Google My Business Impact Your Optometry Practice’s Digital Footprint?
Before we can address this bigger question, let’s back up a little. What exactly is Google My Business (GMB) anyway?
Google My Business is a free and easy-to-use online platform that gives you the power to manage your online presence across all of Google’s offerings, including Search and Maps. When you work this channel properly, you’ll show up in more search results, enabling you to find more patients for your business, tell people about your brand, and verify that your posts are legitimately coming directly from the source.
When you use Google My Business for Optometrists, you can embrace a whole new world of online features, including posts, directory information, and Q&A sections. When you use these features, you can tell people about your practice’s story without much effort on a platform that’s renowned for bringing more people to businesses like yours all over the country.
GMB benefits your business and your future patients alike. Why? Because it puts everything in one place, including reviews, FAQs, and posts that can help people learn more about your practice. This platform allows interactions between your company and your patients that you otherwise may not have had access to, making it an invaluable tool when it comes to local marketing.
Benefits of Using Google My Business for Optometrists
When it comes to local search, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a platform that works as well as Google My Business. That’s because, by nature, it’s powered by the world’s most sought-after search engine. As a result, when you can make friends with the algorithms, your practice will show up in all sorts of Google-owned entities, such as Maps and Search. The key, however, is knowing how to finesse your content in ways that speak to the algorithms’ needs. Once you figure that part of the puzzle out, you’ll be golden.
GMB is great for a ton of reasons. Besides the fact that it’s super robust and free, there are a few other benefits you might realize when you get your profile up and going, including:
- Visibility. Because GMB is powered by Google, your brand can be highly visible without much effort once you figure out what the rules and best practices are.
- Transparency. GMB enables users to see the information they need at a glance. It all lives right there in one place.
- Local SEO Improvement. When you embrace GMB the right way, you can improve your local search engine optimization tactics so you’re seen on the first page of Search results and suggested on top of Map results.
- Increased Sales. The more you’re in front of local searchers who are specifically looking for the optometry services you provide, the more likely you are to get people into your sales funnel. Sure, your practice is about helping people, but you also need to keep the lights on. That’s why it’s important to bring people in who will enhance your bottom line by buying glasses, upgrading their lenses, and purchasing year-long prescriptions for their contact lenses.
- Improved Star Ratings. When people know where to go to rate you, they’re more likely to take the time to do so. Of course, you don’t want just any rating; you want that coveted five-star rating, which is why it’s not only important to deliver great patient experiences, but you also need to be ready to ask for reviews when your patients are leaving your facility. Star ratings boost your appeal because future patients are likely browsing your ratings (as well as those of your competitors), so it’s important to not only have great reviews, but it’s also imperative to receive those positive reviews as often as possible. Research shows that people often search by the most recent review, so it doesn’t always help if you have a million great reviews, but the most recent one is three years old; your prospective patients will be suspect and will likely move on to your competitors if this is the case.
Features of Google My Business for Optometrists
Don’t be fooled by the fact that GMB is free; there’s a robust suite of services just waiting for you to dive in when you use this platform. For instance, simply updating your profile with your correct business name, address, and phone number can help you score points with Google, particularly with regard to local searches that revolve around the services and products you offer. Although we could spend literally hours on the features that Google My Business can offer your optometry office, we’ve decided to focus on just a few that you simply can’t overlook after you’ve set up your profile. Here’s Surefire Local’s can’t-miss list:
1. Google Profile
Within your Google profile, you should accurately depict your practice’s name, address, phone number, business description, and website. All of this information feeds into Google Search and Maps, which means if anything isn’t correct, you’re messing up your chances of attracting new patients through organic search methods.
When you have your information correct and consistent across all online platforms, including GMB, you enhance your chances of being featured by the search engines when people are looking for the products or services you offer within your local area.
2. Google Reviews
Reviews are vital to the sustainability and growth of your practice. Rest assured that future patients are definitely paying attention to what your current and former patients have said about you, and they’re wondering how you’ll respond to those posts. When it comes to reviews, you need to get them often, and they need to be awesome. Google My Business gives people a safe, quick place where they can hop online, love your office, and go on about their day. At the same time, you and your staff can thank those who have reviewed your business and leave comments that invite others to get to know you, too.
3. Google Questions and Answers
GMB’s Q&A section is great for a ton of different reasons. For starters, you can really work on your SEO strategies in this part of the platform because every question and answer, when chosen correctly, can fulfill the search engines’ needs for optimized keywords. Not only that, but you can also answer humans’ questions in ways that eliminate the burden on your front desk staff, since these questions can be answered in online forums.
4. Google Posts
Google Posts are sort of like blogs, but they’re shorter and you can post them more frequently. Use this space to talk about things your practice is doing, new tools you’ve purchased, or team members who deserve to be highlighted. GMB Posts allow you to showcase your GMB profile when a person searches for the keywords your content highlights within each Post. In this area, you can easily let people know when you’re running specials, highlight the best frames you’ve just gotten in, and encourage your patients to share your practice’s photos with their friends.
Attend a Surefire Local Marketing Platform Demo
Surefire Local is here for optometrists, and we want to make the internet as easy to navigate as possible. We know you’re busy, so we’ve devised an all-in-one platform that’s backed by a team of industry experts who can help you make the most of your marketing dollars. Reach out to our team. We’ll help you craft a local marketing strategy that can assist you in becoming easily accessible on Google (and anywhere else potential patients are looking for you!)