Can People Find Your Practice Online?
Online business directories find your physical therapy practice online and identify it as a local business. The best way to help your practice be searchable is to establish its presence on several key listing websites and monitor its profile. Marketing your practice through an online directory is way a prospective patient can find your contact information. Also, it helps generate new appointments for PT. Below are some common business directories that you should keep up to date in your online marketing plan.
The Top 4 Online Business Directories
Google My Business
Google is the biggest search engine with the most online traffic. Therefore, you should have each clinic’s location identified on Google My Business. When your practice appears cleanly on My Business, anyone using Google Maps or searching for a physical therapy practice will see your locations in the map’s search results.
Make sure to incorporate key contact information, good photos of your clinic, business hours, accepted insurances etc. Having this information readily available to users saves them time and effort and encourages them to contact your practice first.
To start, go to Google My Business and add your practice to the business directory for free. Be sure to keep the information updated. You can also post to this page and Google+ as you would to Facebook which increases the chances of getting found.
Google My Business 2020 Update:
Since there is no end in sight to the coronavirus pandemic, Google My business has become more relevant, and more important for Physical Therapist to use digital marketing to find new patients. Just as we’ve had to develop, Google has started to improve its features to better help local businesses.
How can PT’s use GMB to connect with prospective patients while at home?
Google My Business now allows prospects to message business owners directly and even schedule appointments.
Business Messages is a mobile conversational channel that create rich messaging experience that delight customers and drive business results.
This feature can provide PTs and Patients the ability to build trust through direct messaging from their phones (android and IOS.) You can answer frequently asked questions, which enhance customer care with the ability to connect with a live agent.
How to use:
When you search for a “Physical Therapy Near you” Google maps will show you a map using your current location, along with a list of Physical Therapy Practices Near you. When you click on a particular practice, you’ll see how the Business messages appear directly on the GMB profile. This feature is available for both Android and IOS, And it’ll also appear in Apple maps for IOS, whenever GMB updates.
So why are Google maps and Business Messages Beneficial to PT practices?
Google has been tracking consumer insights regarding smartphone search trends over the past few years. It’s provided detailed statistics indicating continual growth in people finding an interaction with local business.
“As of May 2016, “76% of people who search for a local business on their smartphone, visit a physical place within 24 hours and 28% of those searches result in a purchase.”
Since the way we’ve been communicating has changed, 75% of consumers now prefer to engage with a brand over private messaging channels. As we’ve mentioned before, a GMB account is essential to a business’s foundation. It’s the beginning of establishing trust with your patients while enhancing your online discovery.
A popular online business directory and review website, Yelp also consistently wins top, local SEO results because of their trustworthy local listings. By having your practice on Yelp, you could find yourself higher in Google searches. But, that’s not all it’s good for!
On Yelp, patients can easily post reviews about your practice online. Your patient care coordinator should be marketing your Yelp profile to existing patients who have seen great results. A positive review from a confirmed patient increases your practice’s appeal and credibility to online searchers. Additionally, many people look for positive reviews about a product or service before deciding to use or purchase it for themselves. By directing patients to add their testimonials to Yelp, you generate great endorsements that can attract other new patients.
Want More Local Marketing Best Practices?
Yahoo Local Works and Bing
Yahoo and Bing still have almost 30% of the search engine market. Therefore, you need to register your practice as a business listing on both these search engines. Yahoo Local is the service that gets your physical therapy practice listed on Yahoo. For Bing Places, you need to sign up for an account and get your business registered. Follow the same marketing principles as with Google Places and include all key contact methods, photos, and practice information.
BONUS: Facebook Pages Multiple Locations Feature
You may already have a Facebook page with your main location and other addresses listed in the about section. But, did you know Facebook allows you to set up multiple location-specific pages all tied back to one central brand page? This not only helps with getting found but will help you post relevant content or specific events to each local audience! Set up requires you to have a Facebook Business Manager account, but it’s free and highly recommended if you want to market your practice through Facebook. Get full setup instructions in this article from Social Media Examiner. For more free online marketing training – download these tools for PT Practice Owners!
Here’s the Catch…
These account for most of the market share when it comes to local business directories, but they aren’t the only ones. There are actually HUNDREDS of websites, smartphone apps, in-car GPS software and other ways patients could be looking for you. Keeping up-to-date practice information across all of these platforms would require many painstaking hours of your staff’s time and may not always be worth it…
… But there’s an easier way!
Your practice website can be built with a system that sends updated practice information to all major data companies across the internet ensuring your practice is both visible and up-to-date! This feature is currently available on both our platinum and ultimate website plans. If you want to bring your local listings and SEO to the next level, compare plans here and let us know if you have any questions!