Every year, BrightLocal conducts a Local Consumer Review Survey to evaluate the latest trends in online business reviews.
The statistics were sobering:
- Consumers read an average of 10 reviews before they feel ready to trust a business
- The vast majority of people (91%) between the ages of 18 and 34 trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations
- More than half (57%) of consumers will only use a business if it has 4 or more stars
- Only 5% of people between the ages of 18 and 34 never read reviews
Do these statistics make you anxious?
You’re not alone – it isn’t always easy for medical professionals to ask their patients for online reviews. If you only have a few positive reviews, a single negative review can throw off your entire rating. Plus, patients are less likely to trust you if your review websites are nearly empty!
So how do you do it? What’s the best way to ask patients to leave you a review?
1. Make it as easy as possible
If you want more patient reviews, you’ll need to make the process as easy as possible, both for you and your patients. Some patient software systems can automatically send out texts or emails asking for reviews after appointments.
Some of our clients use Solutionreach, whereas others use AMD. Check your current practice management software to see if it supports automated review requests. If not, never fear – an automated email with links to Yelp, Healthgrades, and other review sites can work just as well.
2. Ask frequently – and through different mediums
For many people, visiting the doctor is an overwhelming experience. It’s hard enough for some patients to remember their diagnosis, let alone to leave a review. For this reason, it’s a good idea to ask for reviews at multiple times and through multiple mediums.
Some patients are more comfortable with texts and emails. Others prefer postcards. Others still prefer it when their doctor asks them for a review personally.
Keep in mind, however, that you shouldn’t ask for reviews on a surgery day. No one wants to think about writing a review right after a procedure! In our experience, the best time to ask for a review is during the post-op visit.
3. Focus on the patients with good experiences
Do you have a patient who had a really good experience in your care? Someone who was glowing to your staff, or couldn’t stop talking about how much better they felt thanks to your hard work? Happy patients make excellent reviewers! Encourage these satisfied patients to leave feedback.
Sometimes, you might feel a little awkward asking for a review. Don’t worry – these happy patients are likely eager to share their good experience with other people.
Are you struggling with how to respond to negative reviews? Or how to get more positive reviews? Sightpath Creative’s team of ophthalmic marketing experts can help. We regularly check review websites for mentions of your practice and provide directions on how to respond to negative reviews. We also offer marketing collateral designed to encourage patients to leave more online reviews.