Before you buy a product, you will almost certainly read a review or two so that you can make an informed decision. This is common practice and most people wouldn’t consider buying anything before reading about it first. So you understand why people are even more cautious when it comes to their health!
Most patients will research a few doctors before deciding who they want to see. Their research might include asking for recommendations from friends but will almost certainly include an online search as well. Regardless of how good a doctor you are, these reviews will ultimately decide whether a patient wants to get in touch with you or not.
So what can you do?
Monitoring your reviews is now essential for doctors who want to maintain their good reputation and ensure that they are offering the best service for their patients. Reviews don’t just show potential patients what they can expect, they also let you know where you could improve and where there are potential flaws in your business. Reviews have become critical to an effective medical marketing strategy. While you might only want 5 star reviews, you should actually be grateful for average reviews too as these will push you further and give you a greater chance of success.
Here are a few review systems you might like to consider using.
Perhaps one of the best-known review sites, Trustpilot boasts 3 billion review impressions and 1.5 million new reviews per month. Trustpilot stars are well recognised and offering this review service can give your site some credibility.
Trustpilot isn’t industry-specific but given the size of the company, this isn’t really a problem as almost every industry is represented in some way. As with many other sites, you can request a free live demo to see how Trustpilot could help you.
One key feature is that verified Trustpilot reviews count towards your Google seller rating. This is good because your reviews will also go towards the SEO value of your site and could boost you up the rankings. Trustpilot reviews typically appear as one of the top search results for your brand giving your customers an instant impression of your business reputation. Like others, Trustpilot sends automated review invitation emails to encourage your customers to leave reviews.
Trustpilot offers a free basic starter pack and 2 other packages at $349 and $599 respectively. Trustpilot also offers custom packages.
Yext allows business owners to encourage their customers to post reviews and add them to their website. The system makes gathering first-hand reviews easy but it also includes fail-safes such as a flag and respond system, which allows you, the business owner to filter out spam and unreasonable reviews before they are published.
Healthcare is one of Yext’s main industries along with hospitality, food services, retail services and financial services. They offer a range of services, including engaging patients through reviews and providing a better experience as a result.
Yext offers their potential customers a chance to see what they are buying into with a live demo feature. The Live Demo shows how reviews can bring a more conversational experience to leading people and search engines to your site and how you can publish verified answers. You can also control all the facts about your business online through a single platform and improve your business’ reputation online.
The Yext starts at $199 per year and their premium package is $999 per year and includes listings, analytics and review monitoring. This is quite expensive but there are a lot of different services included.
YotPo uses reviews to drive revenue and offers a fully joined-up service, taking into account all your other marketing and social strategies. Similar to Yext, YotPo offers you the chance to request reviews as well as filter reviews before they are published to your site. But YotPo goes one further by facilitating emails requesting reviews from your customers as well.
Instead of displaying all the reviews in a single location, YotPo recommends placing relevant reviews onto category, product and checkout pages. This strategy might be tailored for e-commerce sites but can also work well within healthcare. If you imagine reading a page of information about a particular treatment and then a positive review about it at the bottom of the page, you can see how socially persuasive this method can be in all contexts.
YotPo can be connected to a wide range of marketing tools, including e-commerce software such as Magento or Shopify as well as social platforms, Google and others.
YotPo offers a free plan, which includes review request emails amongst other digital marketing services. Customers can upgrade to the premium plan which includes advanced content management, integrated services and a dedicated success manager. YotPo doesn’t specify any particular industries but its client list is retail heavy.
You’ve Got Reviews, Now What?
Once you have a review system in place, you need to make the most of the information you gain. Seeing a long list of positive reviews is great but you can also profit from imperfect reviews by learning from your customers and discovering what you need to do to meet their expectations.
Responding to negative reviews, particularly to start a private conversation, is a brilliant way to discover the flaws in your system from your customer’s perspective. For example, you might find that while your patients are happy with your medical expertise, they didn’t like how dingy the waiting room was or that you didn’t fully listen to them during their appointment. Both of these criticisms are really easy to resolve and hopefully next time, you will be complimented on these things instead!
Though many review systems are designed for retail businesses, many can be adapted to suit a doctor’s website. After all, you are still selling your services. Some review systems are specifically tailored to health industries but, as Yext shows, may be more expensive as a result. It is worth your time to tender for multiple options before deciding on a particular model as each company also offers a range of other complementary services too.