Claiming, auditing, and optimizing important provider and practice listings is an easy online reputation management task that can have a big impact on patient acquisition. This entails:
- Verifying that you are the owner of a healthcare practice
- Ensuring all business information (name, address, phone number, hours of operation, and so on) is correct
- Writing a detailed description of your practice and its unique offerings, or providing details on your education and experience
- Uploading high-quality photographs of you, your staff, and the exterior and interior of your practice
Failing to claim important business and healthcare listings is a reputation management mistake because incomplete or inaccurate listings are frustrating for patients. They’re also confusing to search engines. Google considers online directories highly reputable and uses information it finds on directories to build your healthcare practice in the online world. When different directories contain different information, Google does not know what information is accurate, so it often won’t surface anything to searchers.
Many doctors do not claim their listings simply because they do not recognize the important role they play in online reputation management. Others do not because there are hundreds of online directories, and they’re unsure which are the most important. Our advice is to prioritize the directories where patients look for reviews of healthcare providers. These include Google (48.8 percent), WebMD (32.8 percent), Yelp (22.8 percent), and Healthgrades (21.8 percent).8