Many practices are closed indefinitely due to the outbreak of COVID-19. While precautionary closure is definitely the right thing to do, it certainly will hamper revenue generation for some time.
So, why not put yourself in the best possible digital position both now and when normalcy starts to return? There are a number of steps you can take to improve your online presence so that more potential patients can find you.
In this post, I will cover three things you can do now to help boost your online visibility. I’ll start with something requiring very little technical expertise and finish with a suggestion requiring only a small amount.
Great reviews are a proven driver of new business. If you have a good volume of positive reviews, prospective patients are more likely to be interested in learning more about your practice. The simple reason is that reviews provide tangible third-party proof of how great your services are.
Now is an excellent time to reach out to some of your best long-term patients and ask them to review your business on Google. If you have a Google My Business profile, you can even send patients a customized link from Google right to your profile! If you can add just a handful of new reviews, that could be a difference-maker if your competitors don’t have any fresh ones.
An added benefit of reviews is that they are also an organic search ranking factor, meaning positive reviews can help improve the rankings positioning (hence visibility) of your practice in local search results.
Claim + Fill Out Your Google My Business Profile
If you haven’t claimed your business on Google, now is the time. Google My Business is a free tool created by Google that allows you to control pertinent information about your business. The info is displayed across Google products, search results, and maps. Here’s a link to learn more and sign-up.
Once your business is claimed the fun can begin. Fill out your profile thoroughly. Doing so will add relevant information prospective clients can easily access like location, hours, and contact information.
A thorough GMB profile can also provide an added SEO benefit. Google wants to provide its users with the most accurate results possible for all search queries. By including more relevant and thorough information than competitors your practice will offer a compelling case for Google to position your listing well in local search results.
Optimize Your Website’s Homepage Content
For most websites, the homepage is by far the most visited page. It’s the first glimpse many prospective patients have into who you are as a practice and what services you can provide to them. And, coincidentally, website visitors have very little patience when they’re searching for information.
That’s why clear messaging is crucial. By promptly stating the services you offer and how people can get in touch with you to learn more, you will provide prospective patients with info most of them need right away. That, in turn, should improve the amount of time they’re spending on your site and lead to more inquiries about your services.
So, check your homepage. Does the headline or at least the opening content paragraph say something really straight-forward like “Dentist in Seattle, WA” or whatever your area of expertise and location may be? If not, it’s time to closely examine your content and come up with more direct wording.
At Sesame, for example, the opening text on our homepage clearly states “WHAT WE CAN DO FOR YOU” and is followed by the services Sesame provides.
By working with current patients to get great reviews in place on Google and also optimizing your Google My Business profile, you’ll take two very valuable steps towards attracting new patients to your website. If you can be more direct and helpful with the text on your homepage (especially at the top) you’ll keep visitors to your site more engaged.
Please feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions. Also, if you’re interested in additional content recommendations for your website please visit this recent blog post covering website content messaging tips in more detail.
—Mike Fitterer, Sr. Marketing Manager, Sesame Communications