Your practice and team is constantly getting questions from prospects and patients from a variety of sources — questions asked on Google, over the phone, via your website forms, when a patient checks in, and during the appointment.
You also know to make sure you’re answering these questions in a timely manner and with the correct information. Are you aware of this one other place that prospects and patients might be asking questions? It’s your Google My Business listing.
Your Google My Business listing is one of the most important digital marketing tools for any local business. It offers a multitude of ways for a business to communicate with prospects and differentiate itself from competitors. You can
- Post pictures and videos of your practice
- Post upcoming events and specials
- Gather online reviews from patients
It also offers a multitude of ways for patients and prospects to communicate with a business: calling, direct messaging, emailing, and asking questions directly within the listing.
This last feature, Question and Answers, has been around for about a year and a half, yet many local businesses are still unfamiliar with it or are not taking advantage of the benefits it provides. We are going to show you what this feature is, how to use it, and explain the benefits it provides your business.
What Is Google Questions and Answers?
Simply put, Google Questions and Answers is a feature located within your Google business listing that allows people to post a question to your business or answer a previously posted question directly to your business.
Users can access your practice’s questions and answers within your Google business listing.
A couple of important items to consider regarding the Google Questions and Answers feature:
- Anyone can post a question, and anyone can answer a currently posted question.
- These questions and answers are visible to anyone.
This can cause prospects to see incorrect information about your practice. You certainly wouldn’t want an answer like this posted to your business. Addressing these questions is similar to online reviews — you want to make sure you are aware of them.
Don’t let answers like this go unaddressed
Steps to Use Questions and Answers
Step 1: Have access to your listing.
Ensure that your Google My Business listing is claimed and that you have access as the owner to that listing. This is important as we will discuss further regarding how to use this feature.
You can check to see if your listing is claimed by visiting here. If you are an Audigy Member and on the Digital Marketing program, your team will have claimed and optimized your listing.
Step 2: See if any questions have already been posted to your business.
Once you have confirmed your listing is claimed and you have access to your current business listing, check to see if any questions have already been posted to your business. If there are questions, respond to those questions even if someone else has already responded. As the owner, you want to show that you are engaged with prospects and patients. You also want to make sure the most accurate answer is posted to any question. Again, anyone can answer questions posted to your business, and answers by other people might not be correct.
Step 3: Post and answer your own questions.
As an owner, you can post your own questions to our business listing. We highly recommend creating a list of common questions you get from prospect phone calls, questions during appointments, or questions you get when new patients come to their first appointment. Some example questions you could post are:
- Do you accept Medicare?
- Do you provide hearing care services for children?
- Do you offer tinnitus treatment?
- What insurances do you accept?
Once you have posted your own questions on your business listing, don’t forget to answer those questions as the business owner. By posting your own questions and answers, you are providing relevant and helpful information to your prospects and patients. It also shows Google that your business listing is being updated with new information that helps people find the right information they are searching for. In the end, this can be a benefit to your local search ranking and help you stay ahead of your competitors. Remember, there are not that many businesses taking advantage of this feature, especially in the hearing care industry.
Beyond Controlling Your Brand’s Messaging
Having a Google business listing that is constantly updated with new information for people searching for the services and products your practice offers will help you increase your local search ranking.
A 2018 survey of industry experts shows that your Google business listing affects about 25% of your local search ranking.
The more you do to keep your listing fresh with new content, the better chance you have to increase your local search ranking.
We hope this gives you some ideas on how you can use the Google Question and Answer feature within your business listing and that you are able to add in your own questions and answers to make your practice stand out.
Google is frequently changing the features offered within your business listing, so it is important as a practice owner that you are aware of them, know how to use them, and understand the benefits of each feature. If you have any questions about this feature or any other digital marketing tactic, please don’t hesitate to reach out to the Audigy team.