Follow these 8 Simple Steps!
Learn How to Set Up a Google My Business Account
What is Google My Business?
Google My Business is a free tool that allows your business to show up in Google search results. GMB allows your patients and potential patients to find out everything they need to know about your business quickly.
If you have a Google My Business profile for your practice you may have noticed a few new additions that were automatically added to your account this fall. The new section is titled “Health & Safety” and includes:
- Appointment required
- Mask required
- Staff get temperature checks
- Staff wear masks
- Temperature check required
These measures were put in place to better keep customers informed and are one of many business changes Google My Business has rolled out since the start of the pandemic.
How does this benefit your practice?
Everyday dozens of people go to Google and other search engines to complete various searches and the information listed influences their decision. Seeing information such as “Staff get temperature checks” or “Staff get temperature checks” displayed in black and white reassures prospective patients (and even current ones) that they are entering into a safe environment when visiting your practice. That is if you have set up an account with Google My Business.
What is the importance of Google My Business?
Local searches can help to extricate searches who aren’t likely going to contact your business because search engines desire to provide local results based on proximity and intent. Thirty-four percent of end users who perform a search on their computer or tablet visited the physical location within a day of the search; 50% who perform a local search on their phone did the same. As a hearing health business owner, Local Search is one of the most necessary components of your digital marketing efforts. Google My Business is an essential factor when ensuring your practice will appear in local searches. Through Google My Business you can:
- Engage your patients by responding to reviews, enabling direct messaging, or answering questions
- Highlight your business by adding unique details about your practice, such as products and services
- Gain Insights by analyzing data to discover how customers are finding your practice
- Perform SEO by incorporating keywords into your profile
How to set up a Google My Business Account
If you don’t have a profile with Google My Business, the process to set up an account is simple. Follow the instructions below.
- Set up a new Google Account
Perform this step only if you’re new to Google.
- Head to google.com/business
Click “Manage Now.”
- Enter the name of your practice
Should you have a hearing health business with the same name as another in your region, you’ll see the autocomplete function, which allows you to see if your business listing already exists, or to add a new Google My Business profile to an existing business if you’re adding a new location.
- Enter your practice’s address
In this section you will see a checkbox that reads “I deliver goods and services to my customers.” This section is for businesses or stores that deliver items and services directly to customers. You can leave it blank.
- Specify Service Area
You can enter the regions, cities, or ZIP codes that your practice services.
- Choose your business category
This field greatly influences the kinds of searches your practice will appear in with Google. Look through the list under “Business Category” to find the most accurate category. You can also research your competitors to see what category they’re listed under.
- Add contact number and website URL
Adding your number and website helps with Google My Business functionalities like call tracking. Should you not have a website, Google will give you the option to create a new Google website based on the information provided. However, having a unique website only enhances your practice’s online presence.
- Complete Google My Business Verification
Once you complete steps one through seven, you’ll be instructed to “Finish and verify this business.” Once you click finish, Google goes to work to ensure your practice is what you say it is. There are three options you can choose to verify your practice.
- Postcard Verification – This option is the most used and is available to all businesses. A postcard will be sent to the address you enter within five days. Once you receive it, verify your Google My Business account by entering the code provided on the postcard. Should you not receive the postcard, click the “Request another code” button at the top of the screen.
- Phone Verification – Some businesses will have the option to verify via phone and will have the “Verify by phone” option at the beginning of the verification process. With this process you’ll receive an automated message with a verification code to enter into Google My Business.
- Email Verification – Should your practice be eligible for this option, you’ll see the ”Verify by email” option on your screen. Once you provide your email address, you’ll receive the verification code via email. Like the phone option, it’s not available to all businesses.
Google My Business also has instant verification, but it’s only available if your practice has already been verified with Google Search Console.
Once you’ve verified your practice you can begin optimizing your Google My Business account by:
- Adding photos or videos
- Writing an optimized description of your practice
- Request Google Reviews from your patients
- Add a list of services and products offered
Google is constantly adding new features to Google My Business to help businesses better market their products and services online, and while performing certain online marketing like social media can be intimidating, Google My Business is easy to use. Even before the pandemic, Google My Business has been a go-to resource for digital marketing. And as the pandemic changes the way we do business, utilizing Google My Business has become an even more vital resource. You never know when a local search can lead you to your next patient.