Does your hospital have a Google My Business (GMB) healthcare listing? If you don’t know, it’s a good idea to Google the name of your hospital and find out. Google My Business listings are what appear in the box on the right-hand side of your screen when you search for a business name on Google.

Google My Business healthcare listings can include a complete business profile for your hospital — including photos, reviews/ratings, a brief description, a question/answer section, and location and contact information. And the best part is, they are completely free!

Learn why it’s important for your hospital to optimize this tool and best practices for your hospital to use when completing your Google My Business healthcare listing.

A Google My Business healthcare listing from Orlando Health Horizon West Hospital

A Google My Business healthcare listing for the new Orlando Health Horizon West Hospital.

Why your Google My Business healthcare listing is important

In March 2020, Google updated their Google My Business healthcare guidelines in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. According to Social Climb, Google urged providers to update their business information and list of services they provide on Google Search and Maps. Specifically, patients needed to know how to access telemedicine opportunities during the pandemic.

While keeping your listing up-to-date during the pandemic is essential, there are a few more reasons why your hospital should optimize your Google My Business listing:

1. It’s easier for patients or clients to contact you

Your business profile can include your website URL, directions, phone numbers, business hours and more. Of course, people can also find this information on your website. But your listing conveniently places the most important information where it’s easy to find by simply Googling your hospital’s name.

2. It can help your hospital’s SEO

Your optimized Google My Business listing builds up your local search reputation and gives your hospital more visibility. In other words, when you have a complete GMB listing for each of your locations, local patients are more likely to find your hospital when searching on Google.

3. It gives patients, customers or clients the ability to review your organization and ask questions

Although online reviews can be a double-edged sword — with a mix of both positive and negative reviews — it is important to have a place for visitors to your hospital to provide honest feedback. This gives you a chance to reinforce the things you are doing well or address items that need improvement.

In addition, GMB listings offer a question and answer section that allows you to engage directly with consumers. This Q and A feature is one that is specifically beneficial to healthcare providers. But keep in mind, you’ll need to designate someone to respond with accurate and timely answers or the answers may come from one of Google’s “local guides” — who is not a member of your organization.

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Best practices for Google My Business healthcare listings

Now that you have decided you would like to update your hospital’s Google My Business listing, it’s time to take action. To sign up, verify, or review and update your hospital’s Google My Business listing, visit this Google My Business help page.

As you are completing your Google My Business healthcare listing, keep these tips in mind:

1. Fill out all information

Fill out each section offered — website, address, directions, phone number, photos and a short summary. The more information you provide, the more likely the potential patient will reach out. In fact, customers are 70% more likely to visit a business with a complete Google My Business profile.

2. Include any differentiating information

A good Google My Business description includes as much information as possible — including services offered and any major nearby landmarks/intersections that will help people find your hospital.

An example of a good GMB description would read something like this, “City Hospital provides healthcare services to the Utopia community. We are located at the corner of Big Street and Long Street, just two miles east of the Airport. We provide primary and pediatric services and have appointments available seven days a week.”

3. Keep the information up to date

Designate someone on your marketing team as the “owner” of your hospital’s Google My Business listing. This person should answer any questions in the Q and A section and ensure that all information is up to date so patients can continue to contact you.

Examples of good Google My Business healthcare listings

There are examples of good Google My Business healthcare listings available all over the internet. Some of our favorites include:

  • Phoenix Children’s Hospital. When you enter “Phoenix Children’s Hospital” in your Google search bar, you will see a GMB listing that is completely filled out and also has received a ton of patient engagement. In fact, there are almost 800 Google reviews and more than 75 questions and answers.
  • Orlando Health. The new Orlando Health Horizon West Hospital location opened in January 2021. When the new location opened, the marketing team made sure that the GMB description was updated. You can find the latest description by Googling “Orlando Health Horizon West Hospital.”
  • Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. When you Google this hospital, you will find a complete GMB profile that’s up-to-date and verified. In addition, there is a lot of patient engagement — with almost 500 Google reviews and 115 questions and answers.
  • Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. The GMB description for this hospital is also filled out completely and has lots of patient engagement. There are more than 500 Google reviews and over 80 questions and answers.

Need help updating your hospital’s Google My Business healthcare listing? WriterGirl has a team of healthcare writers who can help you execute all areas of your content strategy, so you don’t have to face your marketing goals alone. Contact us any time to learn more.