The Free Google Tools You Need To Give Your Practice a Boost
What can one say about the importance of Google that hasn’t already been said? As a search engine, it is the clear leader, and appearing in Google search results is essential for getting found online. But Google is more than a search engine, it’s a marketing machine with robust tools you can leverage to grow your practice.
In this article, we’ll take a look at several of those tools and how you can make them work for you, beginning with one that you should start using right now.
Google My Business
When marketing to new patients, geography is a key consideration. The fact that Google My Business (GMB) is highly effective at targeting local searchers is a large part of what makes GMB perhaps the most essential of all Google’s tools.
When you claim your GMB listing, your practice will show up in local searches near the top of the page, in a prominent area called the “Local Pack,” where you show up on a list sorted by distance from the searcher.
When the searcher clicks on your listing within the Local Pack, they will see more information about your practice, including
- Your address and phone number
- A link to your website
- Your hours
Patients can leave reviews, which show up in your listing and help lend credibility to your practice. There is even a place where searchers can ask you questions, providing an excellent opportunity for you to engage with and win them over before they even set foot in your office.
Google Ads (PPC)
Pay Per Click (PPC) ads are a quick way to get to the top of Google search results and can be targeted at promoting your practice’s high-value services.
It works like this: anytime somebody searches for a keyword that you have targeted, Google places your ad in a premier spot. Every time somebody clicks on that ad, you pay Google an agreed-upon amount. The amount you pay for each click depends upon the keyword or phrase you have selected. Done correctly, the return on your investment is excellent, with most ads making back an average of $2 for every dollar spent.
And while your ads go away as soon as you stop paying, you can still use PPC as a part of your long-term strategy. Monitor the performance of each of the keywords you target and use that data to inform your Organic SEO efforts. Incorporate the most successful keywords into website content, including blog topics. It’s a way to gain even more value from this already valuable tool.
To maximize your marketing efforts, you need to be able to peek behind the scenes. Google Analytics is a tool that will let you do just that. With it, you can learn important information like:
- How long are people staying on your site?
- What is your site’s bounce rate?
- How many visitors does your site have?
- Are site visitors new or returning users?
Use it to understand your web traffic, how users are navigating your site, and which keywords have been effective. It’s a way to improve both your SEO and the relevance of your site to your patients.
Google Keyword Planner
Keyword Planner lets you see metrics for specific keywords related to your practice. It provides information for individual keywords and phrases about:
- Average monthly search volume
- Level of competition
- Estimated cost-per-click for specific keywords related to your practice
You’ll not only get metrics from the keywords you select yourself, but will also receive keyword suggestions, so you can find the right ones to target the new patients that will help you grow your practice.
This simple-to-use tool lets you analyze the topics that potential patients may be searching for and can yield very valuable information. Just enter your search term at Google Trends then click “search.” You can narrow down results by location, time, and category to gain even more insight. You can even compare keywords within a specific category.
For example, if you are a podiatrist looking to grow your practice, you might want to compare keywords such as foot injury, plantar warts, bunion, heel spur, and diabetic neuropathy. Using Google Trends, you’ll be able to see how many times each particular keyword has been searched for and, particularly, if and when they have been searched for in your general location.
You can then use that information to optimize your site to show up in more searches and higher in search results.
Google Search Console
Google Search Console contains tools and reports that you can use to measure site traffic and site performance and help you fix issues so that your site performs at its best. It not only provides content analytics but also has a way for you to submit content, such as sitemaps and individual URLs for crawling, to help with search results. It even sends alerts when it finds potential issues with your site.
Google Alerts is exactly what it sounds like, a tool that sends you notifications about topics and events that are of interest to you. Just enter your terms and choose to receive notifications daily or weekly.
Alerts can be useful for
- Monitoring mentions of your practice
- Following industry trends
- Keeping up-to-date on trending news stories
- Sourcing articles and content to share
- Keeping an eye on your competitor’s activity
It’s a simple way to keep an eye on anything that may be of relevance to you and your practice.
Summing it Up
More than just being just a hub to seek out and gather information, Google offers free tools that you can use to raise your profile and get found by the patients who are looking for a doctor just like you. Our team uses these tools along with several others to help you connect with local patients in your area. To learn about how we can help your practice get found easier on Google visiting officite.com/seo to learn more.