Which Review Platforms Should I Focus On?
These days, all of us probably rely on online reviews when we’re choosing a new restaurant, researching a larger purchase, or looking for the best place to shop. As a medical practice, your prospective patients’ process is no different when they are looking for a new doctor, dentist, or surgeon. There are countless websites where patients can leave reviews, so part of your reputation management strategy has to be choosing the platforms you should focus on most. Here are some considerations to have in mind, as well as our marketing specialists’ most basic recommendations for gathering new reviews.
Just like SEO, your primary focus for reviews should be Google. Google accounts for at least 90% off all searches, so when new patients are choosing a doctor near them, they are likely to read reviews from your Google My Business account first. Don’t forget that your Google My Business reviews are also displayed on Google Maps, which means that your patients are likely to see them as they navigate to their first appointments. A large number of overwhelmingly positive Google My Business reviews will help your practice appear more reputable.
Google My Business reviews also play a role in your overall SEO with Google. The new algorithm takes Google My Business profiles into account when choosing results for local searches. This means that having a complete profile, including numerous reviews, will improve your rankings.
If you haven’t set up a Google My Business account yet and you’re not sure where to start, contact your DLM marketing specialist.
Facebook still has a far reach in your local community. When new patients find your Facebook page, they are likely to read reviews first. It can also be worthwhile to promote your practice on Facebook to reach new patients and draw them to your page. Since Facebook has such a wide reach, it’s key to encourage as many positive reviews as possible. You can also spotlight positive reviews in new posts as part of your social strategy.
Yelp has nearly 200 million monthly users and is a primary source for business reviews for many people. Yelp is also a more community-oriented site compared to other platforms, so Yelp users take reviews seriously and offer detailed feedback. Research has shown that higher star ratings on Yelp will correlate with increased revenue, so it’s a good idea to encourage Yelp reviews.
As a medical practice, there are specified sites that your potential patients might be looking at to check for reviews. These include HealthGrades, ZocDoc, and Vitals. While these sites have fewer users overall, it’s still worthwhile to improve your rating or request new reviews from patients.
Encouraging more reviews is important to boost your overall review rating and improve your credibility with potential new patients. There are several steps you can take to make sure your existing patients post their own positive reviews.
First, you can start an email campaign requesting new reviews. Emails can be automated and sent to patients after their appointments, making it easy to link to the review platforms you want to target most.
Posting signage around your office can also be helpful reminders to patients to post their reviews. Consider placing signs in waiting rooms so patients post their reviews while they are waiting for their appointment.
Perhaps the most effective way to encourage more reviews is to make verbal requests when your patients are in the office for appointments. Doctors or their office staff can make these requests a normal part of their routines, reminding patients to leave reviews on the platform they are trying to target most.
For more tips on generating new patient reviews and the platform that your practice should focus on, call our marketing specialists at Digital Limelight Media. Our team creates specialized strategies that will work for your practice and reach the audience that is most important to you. Call (616) 222-3735 or contact us online.