How Patients Find Your Practice in 2011

magnifying glass finding

Patients looking for your practice

A recent survey conducted by Harris Interactive tells savvy doctors some important news about how patients find medical practices.

The poll was conducted in the fall of 2011.

Here are some conclusions I draw from the results:

Patients rarely think about your practice first

8% of the respondents in the poll began looking for local businesses at the merchant’s website.

That means that potential patients rarely think to themselves, “Dr. Stevens and his partners at Mucho Excellence Medical Group dot com are the best – I’ll type in their website address and set up an appointment”.

Your practice’s name is not bouncing around in peoples’ heads, just waiting to come to the surface.

They’re thinking about their pain or potential diagnosis, and they want a solution – NOW.

Patients use search engines and review sites to find local businesses

Two thirds of people in this poll said they start their local business search on search engines and review sites.

You MUST be findable in the search engines. This means getting in front of searching patients on every channel possible. You want to take up as many search engine results spots (on the first page of Google) as possible.

Whether this means getting your practice website to rank highly, claiming your profile on doctor rating sites, or getting involved in social media, it all means more eyeballs on links to your stuff.

Make sure you’re aware of what your practice profile (if it exists) looks like on sites like Yelp and Angie’s List. Fortunately, our practices are less likely to be on the most heavily trafficked sites for other types of businesses, but the plethora of doctor rating sites can more than make up for that.

Getting patients to find you

What do you find most frustrating about getting started with online practice promotion?

Here’s a link to a post about getting started with a solid foundation…

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