In this post, we’re going to answer the question ‘what is Google My Business’ and more importantly, how it can help a dental practice just like yours get noticed in the online world. So let’s dive straight in and take a closer look….
In an effort to create more visibility on search engines such as Google, many companies or business owners create a business profile (or business listing). If you have already done this, what you might not realise is that creating your listing or profile doesn’t give you complete management over it.
Did you know that even something as simple as your business profile can be an effective SEO and lead generation tool?
However, in order for it to do so, you need management and editing capabilities. In other words, as well as creating a free business profile, you should also look to create something known as a ‘Google My Business Account’ or a GMB account. The good news is that this is also free to use.
So what’s the difference between a business profile/business listing and a GM Business account?
In essence, creating a business profile is very similar to adding a place name or site location to Google Maps. This is something anyone or anything (think automated listing generator) can do. All Google requires is your business name, your location, and the category or industry you work in. Once Google confirms that the request has not been duplicated, they will automatically create the business listing for that particular location.
Once the business profile is live it’s then available for customers to leave reviews, ask questions, and even add photos if they wish. Your profile can also be populated with relevant information that Google pulls from the World Wide Web.
What this means is that a business profile is a standalone account that once created, you have no real ownership or control over. You might not be able to control, change, or edit any of the information it displays, including the reviews.
So what is a Google My Business account and how does it link in with your business listing/profile?
A Google My Business account is to all intent and purpose a tool which allows you to unlock or access, enhance, customise, and manage your business listing. Without it, your business profile remains static and unchangeable.
So now we know just what Google My Business is and how it fits in with your business profile, how would you as a dentist or dental practice owner use it for local marketing? Let’s take a look…
Aids customer engagement
Just like if you have a comments section on your dental website, Google My Business allows you to reply or engage with people who have left comments on your business profile. It also allows you to…
- Respond to reviews
- Enable direct messaging
- Answer questions
- Set up Google alerts and even
- Publish posts to your business profile just as you would on other social media channels such as Facebook.
Helps your business stand out
We’ve already mentioned that your business listing alone contains limited static information. However, through your Google My Business account dashboard, it allows you to provide other information that makes your business stand out. Things like:
- Business opening hours so people can see at a glance without having to crawl through your dental practice website
- A link back to your dental website for those people wanting to find out more about the services you offer
- Listing your treatment/services and pricing, particularly those that other dental practices don’t offer, plus
- Attributes and other details that make your dental practice unique.
A Google My Business account also allows you to make changes and edits to your business profile as and when you see fit.
Providing key information or Insights
Similarly to the dashboard on your dental website, the dashboard for your Google My Business profile offers key snapshots or insights into your audience. Insights allow you to see a whole host of information such as :
- The queries or questions that searchers are using to find your business profile.
- Whether they found you through a Google search or by Google Maps
- A breakdown of any actions undertaken on your listing and even…
- How your photos or pictures are helping (or not) to reel in visitors, as opposed to other dental businesses
Performs Localised Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Just as Google has ever-changing algorithms for ranking your advertising and dental website, it also has similar algorithms for ranking your business listing or profile. Your GMB dashboard allows you to incorporate localised or geo-targeted keywords that will help your dental practice to rank when an individual carries out a localised search.
Hopefully, we’ve covered the answer to the question “what is Google My Business’ in some detail.
Now we’re going to take a closer look at how you can use your GMB account so that anyone seeking out say a ‘children’s dentist in Sydney’ will find you and not your competitors. Two of the points you should focus on are:
- Quality of information and
- Building trust
Maintain quality of information
The accuracy and completeness of your business profile will have a say in your rankings, so for best practise, it’s worth ensuring that every section in your profile is completed. Especially important are factors like opening hours/emergency hours, contact information, and attributes.
Another element of a well-rounded GMB profile is all about keeping your information updated and accurate. This builds trust amongst searchers and indeed Google. When your business evolves, always ensure it’s accurately reflected in your Google My Business profile. Remain active by responding to comments (both good and bad) and by publishing posts.
Now you have a better understanding of what is Google My Business and how it works, you can see that it isn’t only an added benefit for your dental practice, it’s a real must!
To find out more about GMB or about any other element of SEO, then contact the team at Mediboost. We’re specialists in helping dental and medical industry professionals get noticed online. To find out more, book a free no-obligation consultation today.