In today’s digital age, having a solid online presence is crucial for optometrists. Gone are the days when traditional methods alone could sustain your practice. Your potential patients are searching online, and that’s where your practice needs to stand out.
Let me clear up a common misunderstanding: Google Business Profile is more than just a mere online directory. It’s a digital marketing tool for optometrists that can significantly amplify a practice’s local search visibility and booking conversions.
According to Google’s own information on Google Business Profiles (GBP):
- Customers are 2.7 times more likely to consider a business reputable if they find a complete Business Profile on Google Search and Maps.
- Customers are 70% more likely to visit businesses with a complete Business Profile.
Ignoring the potential of your Google Business Profile could mean missing out on a significant portion of your market. This goes beyond just being seen online; it’s about establishing trust and connection even before patients walk into your clinic.
Interested in exploring the full potential of Google Business Profile for your optometry practice? Keep reading.
Or better, let’s have a one-on-one chat. Book a free consultation with us at Optics Digital Marketing, and map out a digital strategy that leads patients right to your optometry practice doorstep.
Optimizing Your Profile for Patient Engagement
When it comes to standing out as an independent optometry practice, especially against the big retail chains, your Google Business Profile (GBP) is a game-changer. Let’s talk about how you can optimize it to truly reflect the level of personal attention that your practice offers.
Highlighting the Personal Touch:
Your GBP should feel like a warm welcome mat, inviting and informative. Make sure your business description feels personal. Talk about your practice’s history, your commitment to patient care, and the unique services you offer. Tell your story in a way that connects with potential patients, letting them know they’ll be more than just a number at your practice.
Bringing a Human Face with Photos:
A picture is worth a thousand words, right? This is especially true for your GBP. Upload high-quality photos of your practice, your staff in action, and even happy patients (with their permission, of course). These visuals not only make your profile more engaging but also give potential patients a glimpse into the experience of visiting your practice. It brings a human face to your business, something larger optometry chains often lack.
Showcasing Your Fashion
Visuals can be a game-changer for boosting income in your optometry practice, especially when it comes to eyewear fashion. Imagine this: your Google Business Profile becomes a mini showcase, an exciting gallery of the latest in eyewear trends. It’s like a window display that the whole digital world walks past.
Google themselves suggest you should add the following kinds of photos to your Google Business Profile.
|Type of Photo
|Minimum Number to Add
|Exterior photos help customers recognize your business as they approach from different directions.
|At least three
|1. Capture a photo from each direction that customers might approach your business.
2. Try uploading photos that show your business at different times of day.
|Interior photos help your customers get a feel for the ambiance and decor of your business.
|At least three
|1. Capture photos that truthfully show what it’s like to stand inside your business as a customer.
2. Capture the atmosphere of your business in your photos.
|Great photos of representative or popular products give customers a better understanding of the kinds of goods you offer.
|At least three
|1. Showcase the items that are most popular for your business.
2. Try taking evenly lit photos of your products.
|Photos at work
|Photos help customers quickly understand the type of work you do.
|At least three
|1. Capture photos of your team providing different types of service to customers.
2. Capture photos of the speciality services you deliver.
|Team photos are important to present a more personal side of your establishment.
|At least three
|1. Show something a little less formal to humanize your business.
2. Show yourself and any staff to highlight your personalities and give potential clients a feel for what you’re like.
Fill Out Your GBP Listing Completely
Here are some other things you should optimize on your profile.
- Business Name: Ensure the business name is exactly as it appears in real life and consistent across all platforms
- Address : This also needs to exactly match your physical location (no virtual offices or P.O. boxes allowed)
- Contact Information: Include up-to-date phone number and email address for easy contact.
- Website URL: Link to the practice’s website for direct access to more information and appointment booking.
- Operating Hours: Provide current opening and closing hours, including special hours for holidays or events.
- Business Categories: Select your primary category as “Optometrist” and up to nine secondary categories as appropriate.
- Services Offered: List all services provided, such as eye exams, contact lens fittings, myopia control, etc.
- Business Description: A well-crafted, engaging description highlighting unique aspects of the practice and its services.
- Health and Safety Measures: Update any health and safety measures being taken, especially relevant during times like the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Q&A Section: Monitor and respond to questions asked by visitors in the Q&A section of the profile.
- Attributes: Add relevant attributes like wheelchair accessibility, parking availability, or payment methods accepted.
If you are looking for a “deep dive” on optimization tips, watch the following video from Zanet Design.
Reviews: A Ninja Tactic in Digital Marketing for Optometrists
Reviews are like word-of-mouth in the digital age. They’re incredibly powerful. Encourage your satisfied patients to leave reviews, especially if they’ve just experienced a particular service or purchased a specific product from you. When prospective patients read these reviews, they get a real sense of the quality of care and service they can expect. It’s one thing for you to talk about your services, but it’s far more convincing when your patients do the talking.
Positive reviews on your Google Business Profile do more than just make you look good; they’re a key player in boosting your local search rankings. When patients mention specific services – say, ‘child-friendly eye tests’ or ‘stylish progressive lenses’ – these terms help to boost your relevance for those search terms.
Now, how do you get these invaluable reviews?
First off, don’t be shy about asking for them. After a successful appointment, where you sense a patient is genuinely satisfied, it’s a perfect moment to encourage them to share their experience online. But remember, the key is to ask in a way that feels personal and genuine, not pushy. It doesn’t hurt to have some display material near your reception counter that informs patients why leaving a review can really help your business. Perhaps put a framed A4 display somewhere that patients can’t miss it, with a QR code that takes people directly to your “Leave a Review” page. The secret to getting more reviews is to make it easy for people to give them!
Another strategy is follow-up communication. A friendly email or text thanking them for their visit and inviting them to leave a review can be effective. In this message include a direct link to your review page. You can even guide them gently by suggesting they mention the specific service or product they experienced.
Managing reviews is equally important. Respond to every review, good or bad. A thoughtful response to a positive review shows appreciation and personal care. And if you encounter a negative review? Address it constructively and offer to rectify any issues. This demonstrates to everyone that your practice values patient feedback and is committed to continuous improvement.
Measuring Your GBP Performance
Let’s talk about success and how you can actually measure it through your Google Business Profile. It’s all well and good to have a fantastic-looking profile, but what really matters is the tangible impact it has on your practice. This is where the real magic of a well-optimized profile shines – in the numbers that truly count.
First off, think about call rates. When your profile hits the right notes – be it through engaging posts, compelling images, or just the right amount of information – potential patients are more likely to pick up the phone. It’s a direct line from their screen to your front desk. Every increase in call rate is a potential increase in patient appointments. It’s not just a call; it’s an opportunity.
Next, let’s consider website clicks. Each click represents a person actively seeking more about your practice. They’ve moved beyond casual browsing to take action. With an optimized profile, these clicks can see a significant uptick. Each click is a step closer to a new patient booking an appointment, a person choosing your practice over others.
And then there are requests for directions to your clinic – a feature that often gets overlooked but is incredibly powerful. When someone requests directions to your practice, they’re literally making moves to see you. It’s a clear indicator that your profile is not just seen but is compelling enough to warrant a visit.
Now, let’s connect the dots. Increased call rates, more website clicks, and a rise in direction requests – these aren’t just numbers. They’re signs of a growing interest in your practice. They represent real people looking for the eye care services you provide. And when these metrics go up, they often correlate directly with an increase in patient bookings.
To access all of these metrics, log into your Google Account (the one you used to set up your Google Business Profile) and then do simple Google Search for your business name. You should be able to see a screen like the following. Just click on the “Performance” option and you will have access to all your performance data.
At Optics Digital Marketing, we focus on these success metrics because they give us – and you – a clear picture of how your Google Business Profile is working for you. They are indicators of the real-world impact of digital optimization. So, if you want to see these kinds of results in your practice, let’s start a conversation. With the right strategy and execution, we can turn your Google Business Profile into a powerful tool for business growth. Let’s make those metrics climb!
The following table illustrates the significant opportunity that your Google Business Profile presents for your optometry practice.
|Increase in “where to buy” + “near me” mobile queries in the past two years
|Percentage of consumers who use the Internet to find local businesses
|6 out of 10
|Number of consumers who use a business’s Google Business Profile for contact information
|Average number of clicks per month for an optimized Google Business Profile
|Percentage of local searchers who then visited a business within 8 kilometers
|Conversion rate from GBP views
|Average number of photos per Google Business listing
|Percentage of Google searches for discovering local businesses without prior loyalty
|Percentage of searchers who read reviews before committing to a purchase
|Percentage of consumers who expect a timely response to reviews
|Percentage of businesses that have never posted on their GBP
|Percentage of businesses that don’t optimize for local search
|Average ROI for local SEO campaigns after 3 years
The Power of Regular Google Posting
Imagine your Google Business Profile like a living, breathing entity in the digital world. Each post you make is like a heartbeat, signaling to potential patients that your practice is active, up-to-date, and involved in the community. Regular posts create a narrative of your practice’s life, showcasing value to your patients.
Weekly Google Update posts are a simple yet powerful tool in digital marketing for optometrists.
So, what makes an effective post? Think about sharing updates on the latest eyewear trends – maybe you’ve just got a snazzy new collection that’s perfect for the upcoming season. Or perhaps you’re introducing a new service or technology in eye care, something that sets your practice apart. These types of posts not only inform but also excite and attract patients who are looking for the latest and greatest in eye care.
And here is where a lot of business owners get it wrong.
You shouldn’t treat your Google Update posts the same as your social media posts. When people are using Facebook, Instagram etc. they aren’t in a “buying” mindset, they want to be entertained, educated or inspired. When people are looking at your Google Business Profile on the other hand, they have their wallet ready. They are looking for offers. So your posts should either a) inform visitors about great offers OR b) persuade why your practice is unique.
Darren Shaw from WhiteSpark has a great video that goes deeper on this point.
Remember, in the digital world, out of sight can quickly become out of mind. Regular posting on your Google Business Profile ensures your practice remains relevant and attractive to potential patients.
Bonus: Google Update Posts DONE FOR YOU
So you’re probably thinking, “How am I going to find the time to do this?” – don’t worry, that’s exactly where our agency comes in. Let us take care of your regular posting schedule, so you can focus on what you do best – caring for your patients’ eyes. We offer a hassle-free weekly Google Update posting service that’s as secure as it is effective.
And here’s the best part: you don’t have to worry about the nitty-gritty.
It works like this: each week, without fail, we’ll craft and publish new Google Update posts. These could be updates about your services, showcases of your latest eyewear collections, or reminders about promotions – all designed to keep your profile fresh, relevant, and conversion optimized.
No more struggling with what to post or fretting over the security of your GBP account. We handle everything with a streamlined process that requires minimal input from you. You’ll even get to preview and approve all content before it goes live, ensuring that everything aligns perfectly with your practice’s ethos and style.
A well-optimized profile can enhance patient engagement by showcasing your unique services and the personal touch that sets your independent practice apart. We’ve talked about leveraging customer reviews to boost your local search rankings and the incredible impact of showcasing eyewear fashion visually to enhance your income streams.
Don’t underestimate the value of regular weekly Google Update posts to keep your practice engaging. And if that seems like a big time commitment or you don’t have someone you can delegate to, Optics Digital Marketing has you covered. Ask about our “GBP Updates Done For You” service.
Digital marketing for optometrists can be a complex field to navigate. This is where expert assistance, like what we offer, becomes invaluable. With our specialized knowledge and experience we can help you not just manage but excel in your online marketing efforts.