Should Doctors Create a Unique Medical Google My Business Page for Each Practice Location?
Posted on Jul 24, 2019 by Sheryl Cragun
We recently published our guide of best practices for medical Google My Business pages (GMB). With over 70,000 SocialClimb client physicians in nearly 10,000 practices across the country, our team understands what physicians and medical practices need to create and manage successful GMB pages. One of the most common questions we hear is: Should doctors have a unique GMB listing for each location where they practice?
Yes! Doctors do need a separate GMB page for every practice location where they work
Yes, doctors do need a separate medical Google My Business page for each practice location where they work. At least they do if they want people to find them in these locations.
The reason? When a person searches for medical care online, Google recognizes the medical terms and assumes the person is looking for a care provider. Google then looks at the searcher’s location and returns the most relevant results–meaning, Google lists the best-match care providers who are closest to the searcher. Google also looks at other factors to rank the list, and reviews and ratings are one of the most important factors. But “location location location” is most important, because Google considers this a Local Search.
For example: If Doctor Smile practices in both Busytown and Sleepyville, but only has one GMB page, which shows the Sleepyville address, then the people in Busytown will not find Dr Smile when they search.
In fact, even if Busywoman has heard about Dr Smile from her Sleepyville cousin, her Google search from Busytown will not find Dr Smile in Busytown at all. Because even though Dr Smile does work in Busytown, she does not work in Busytown as far as Google is concerned. So, not finding her nearby, Busywoman is likely to think, “huh, guess not,” and then quickly choose another doctor that does show up close to home, even if Dr Smile actually practices just a block away.
If I have unique Google My Business pages for physicians at each location, do I still need GMB listings for the practice at each location?
Yes, absolutely. Remember: the goal is for your practice and your physicians to have maximum visibility in Google Local Search results. Having Google My Business pages for your practice–by name, at each address–creates even more places for you to catch reviews and win Local Search rankings.
Is there any reason NOT to have a unique GMB page for each practice address?
Well, yes, there is one reason, and it also has to do with location: Do not create unique GMB pages for the same named physician (or unique GMB pages for your practice) if the addresses are less than 10 miles apart. When addresses are within 10 miles of each other, Google sees them as being in the same general location, and this creates problems for the Local Search algorithms.
If you have a provider that works at two locations within 10 miles of each other, or if you have two practice locations within 10 miles of each other, use the address that seems most central to your preferred client demographic.
Common misconception 1: I heard it would hurt or dilute overall reviews and rankings to create more than one GMB listing
No, it will not hurt or dilute a physician’s or practice’s reviews or rankings to have separate listings, as long as the locations are more than 10 miles apart. In fact, as explained above, these address-specific GMB pages will help each physician and help the practice, because more people will find you as “local.”
Of course, if a physician or your practice only gets a handful of reviews overall, then yes, these few reviews will get diluted because there are so few to begin with. But when you have a reliable mechanism for getting regular reviews and ratings at each location, then each location has enough reviews to create authority and weight in the Google search algorithms. Google then ranks the physician or practice based on these real reviews.
Using an automated review service like SocialClimb can really benefit physicians working at multiple addresses and practices with multiple locations. Our after-care review requests get sent automatically through text and email to every client, and these requests link clients to the correct, address-specific GMB pages that need more and better reviews.
Common misconception 2: I heard I was supposed to focus on the practice, not the provider
This concern often comes from assuming that a practice will only get enough reviews by requiring all physician reviews to feed into and build the practice’s collection of reviews. Remember, in today’s online search world, it is not an either/or game. Maximum visibility is what you want. Definitely you should have a medical Google My Business page for your practice at each location! And you should have pages for each provider at each location.
It can help to remember that Internet search guidelines–and people’s online behaviors–change frequently. It is true that in past years, Google used to recommend that medical practices create a GMB page for their practice name only, and not for their physicians. However, this is no longer what Google recommends. In fact, Google itself now encourages it as a best practice to create unique listing pages for each physician at each practice location, and to create unique listing pages for the practice name itself at each location.
SocialClimb customers have seen great results following these guidelines for medical Google My Business pages
Over the past few years, our SocialClimb clients have seen great results as they have switched from having Google My Business pages for just their practice name to having Google My Business pages for their practice and all their individual provider names. They have especially seen more online traffic by creating unique GMB pages for each address–for their practice and for each physician. These SocialClimb clients have seen impressive increased practice calls, increased practice volume, and increased practice revenue overall.
More than 10% of patients reply to SocialClimb’s automated review requests
SocialClimb’s reliable, automated system creates and sends out review requests to each patient after each visit. Our own data at SocialClimb consistently show that more than 10% of review requests get replied to. This means our clients get a statistically sound, regular flow of real reviews that reflect their actual customer experience.
Studies show that most patients are happy with their care, so online reviews and rankings naturally reflect positively. If for some reason customer reviews show problems, our service recovery tools and survey system and robust reporting options help our clients to quickly address real problems to surgically improve any actual quality of care issues–and their online rankings quickly improve naturally as well.
At SocialClimb, our Customer Care team helps clients to optimize their medical Google My Business pages so their listings rank in online Local Search results. To learn about SocialClimb’s full suite of intelligent, automated practice marketing tools, start reading here. Or, call us for a demo.
Posted in Google My Business