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Good news! Attracting a steady flow of new patients doesn’t require hypnosis, magic, or mysterious “SEO” methods.

In fact, just a few straightforward online marketing tactics — implemented correctly — is enough to dramatically change your practice’s ability to bring in new patients.

Let me explain how patient behavior usually plays out, and what you can do to effect it.

Every day, potential patients are looking for solutions online. Initial choices are often made within minutes, based on search results and online reviews.

What are patients looking for? A provider that’s visible, a good match, and trustworthy (based on reviews.)

If that’s your practice — easy to find, clearly differentiated, with a good reputation — great! You have a high probability of acquiring a new patient.

But if your practice misses the mark online — if it’s not easy to find in search, not clearly differentiated from others, or its reviews are thin — *poof* — patients are gone with one click.

This is the striking reality of the local online marketplace.

Without good visibility and reviews, you may never have an opportunity to start a conversation or book an appointment with a prospective patient, even if they are a perfect fit for your practice.

Patients often get a “second opinion” on a referral by tapping into search results and community-driven reviews. “Word of Mouth” has shifted to the online environment.

The general trend is clear: consumers overwhelmingly use Google, Yelp, Bing, and increasingly, Facebook Local Search to find a healthcare provider that meets their needs.

 

Facebook is leveraging their massive demographic database to compete against Google in the local search game.

Here are a few statistics you might find surprising:

  • 60% of Americans use either a smart phone or tablet to perform local searches for products or services. (Hubspot, 2016)
  • 78% of location-based mobile searches result in an offline purchase. (Search Engine Land, 2014)
  • 28% of searches for something nearby result in a purchase. (Google, 2016)
  • 72% of consumers who did a local search visited a business within five miles. (WordStream, 2016)
  • 28% of searches for something nearby result in a purchase. (Google, 2016)

Your practice should be getting a continuous stream of qualified inquiries from Google, Yelp, Bing, and Facebook.

To make sure that happens, three things need attention:

  1. Missing, inconsistent, or incomplete listings. Without optimized listings, your practice will not rank well and may not be found at all
  2. “Social proof” —  recent, positive reviews that signal a good patient experience.
  3. Website problems: thin content, slowness, and missing local-market optimizations.

To succeed in local search, these problems must get fixed. 

The last thing you want is to block the connection between your business and the surrounding community.

But here’s the good news: There is no shortage of patients that are aligned with your practice’s strengths. In most markets there’s an abundance of business. You simply need to attract and engage the right patients. Once you know how local search really works, your practice can enjoy free traffic for years to come.

Our service provides the solution. It’s affordable, field-tested, and it works.

  1. First, we fix your business listings and your underlying business information. Search engines (and clients) expect complete, consistent listings and citations to make the best connection to your company. Result: more visibility and well-aligned patients.
  2. Then, we provide specific optimizations and guidance to build website authority. Result: higher overall search rankings and more social media engagement
  3. Finally, we provide methods to help acquire reviews — the highly influential “social proof”. Result: higher conversions and greater patient confidence.

An optimized website, complete business listings, and reviews work together to create a strong online presence that pulls in patients year after year. 

That’s also true if you have more distant patients, across the country or across the world. They will certainly be checking your website and reviews before coming on board.

Entrenched, larger practices cannot buy their way into the organic local results on Google, Yelp, or Facebook. Nor can they manipulate reviews to any extent. That’s where your practice can shine.

You may be wondering about all the online strategies out there. Which are most important for a local service business like yours? Where should you start?

Here are the three things every service business must do to succeed in local search:

  1. Local search optimization (our core service). It’s so important. Every local business needs it. Bad listings and inconsistent underlying data kill search engine visibility.
  2. Acquire good reviews. A powerful and free conversion tool.
  3. A fast, mobile-friendly website that converts visitors into clients. We don’t build websites, but we do offer concise guidance on how to turn your site into a conversion machine.

If you join our program, and follow our advice, your practice will attract and engage more patients during the first critical minutes of decision-making.

No other local marketing strategy provides better long-term advantage and value. And unlike advertising which disappears the day you stop paying for it, our organic methods stabilize your listings so that they “stick” in the long run.

We help connect your business to patients at the exact time they want service, in the way they prefer.

Before spending another dollar on ads or mysterious “SEO” efforts, I invite you invest in a marketing strategy that builds a lasting foundation under your practice, and will reward you for years to come.

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