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by OppGen

Before we dive into the best method of managing and optimizing your Google My Business Practitioner Listings for local SEO, let’s begin with the basics.

Who Is Eligible for a Google My Business Practitioner Listing?

Google outlines an individual practitioner as “a public-facing professional, typically with his or her own customer base. Doctors, dentists, lawyers, financial planners, and insurance or real estate agents are all individual practitioners. Listings for practitioners may include title or degree certification (e.g. Dr., MD, JD, Esq., CFA).”

Essentially, an individual practitioner is eligible a dedicated Google My Business listing if:

  • He or she operates in a public-facing role. Support staff should not create their own listings.
  • He or she is directly contactable at the verified location during stated hours.

What Are for Google My Business Practitioner Listings?

Now that we’ve identified who is eligible for Practitioner Listings, let’s discuss what Practitioner Listings are. Practitioner Listings are simply authorized individual Google My Business listings allowing practitioners the ability to now leverage their personal brand on Google search. Local businesses have utilized Google My Business listings for years to help improve search engine rankings. As an individual practitioner, you absolutely should now be leveraging the same strategy for your personal brand. Many clients and patients will search for your name organically and without a well optimized website, and a Practitioner Listing, you could be at risk of missing out on the opportunity.

How To Effectively Optimize Your Practitioner Listing

Below are several common scenarios you or your practice may be facing in regard to effective listing management.

Solo practitioners that belong to branded organizations…
According to Google, if a practitioner is the only public-facing practitioner at a location and represents a branded organization, it’s best for the practitioner to share a listing with the organization. In this scenario, you should create a single listing in the following format:

[brand/company]: [practitioner name]

For example: “BigCity Medical: Dr. Joe Smith, MD

So, you may be wondering, are there advantages, as a solo practitioner and member of a medical clinic, to create or manage two separate Google My Business listings? The answer is: potentially. We first recommend you check your local keyword rankings to determine how you rank for your primary targeted keywords. Let’s say you rank well for “plastic surgery clinic” but not for “plastic surgeon”. This would be a great case to separate your Practitioner Listing and your business listing. However, if your business listing is ranking well, we would recommend not developing a separate listing as a solo practitioner. Just be very careful that your Practitioner Listing down not compete with your business listing!

Multiple practitioners at one location…
Ok, so what if you’re one of several practitioners at this location? In this case, leverage following setup:

  • Have the business or clinic create a listing for the location, separate from that of the practitioner.
  • The title of the listing for the practitioner should include only the name of the practitioner and shouldn’t include the name of the organization.

In this scenario, you will create a Practitioner Listing separate from the business. The listing will look something similar to “Dr. Joe Smith, MD”. There’s also an opportunity to create separate listing for each business location or clinic the practitioner works at. If Dr. Joe Smith works as a plastic surgeon at one clinic, but a general doctor at another, Dr. Smith should create multiple Practitioner Listings, one for each business location to help improve local SEO.

What Sites Should You Begin Creating Practitioner Listings For?

• Google
• Bing Places
• Apple Maps
• Yelp
• YellowPages
• Manta

What Website URL Should You Link To?

Now that you’ve begun developing your Practitioner Listings you may be wondering, what URL should I be linking to for my citations? Best practice is to link Practitioner Listings to your website’s practitioner page or about us page. Continue linking your business listing to your website homepage.

Hopefully this quick summary of how Practitioner Listings helps assist your business or medical clinic as you work towards optimizing your organic business listings.

If you’re still feeling a little lost, do not hesitate to reach out to our experts for further local SEO guidance.

OppGen Team
About OppGen Team
Google My Business Practitioner Listings & How To Effectively Manage Them