Google reviews are important for any business, but particularly so for dentists and orthodontists. So many individuals experience a genuine phobia or anxiety when it comes to having work done in their mouths and on their teeth.
Ensuring your practice has 5 star Google Reviews linked with your online profile can be critical to capturing new patients. This is particularly true when it comes to anxious patients or those concerned about the cost and process involved with orthodontics.
What Are Google Reviews?
Google reviews are publicly available reviews about businesses and services that are posted to Google. These reviews then show up during a Google search related to your practice or associated searches. They are linked to your business or practice via the integrated features of Google My Business and Google Maps.
Google reviews cannot be deleted or removed by a business, but they can be replied to and managed via the Google My Business platform. Genuinely false reviews can be reported for review by Google if required.
How Do Google Reviews Support My Practice?
The benefits of Google Reviews cannot be understated. They deliver a huge boost to your credibility as a practice without you having to spend a cent on advertising. They do this by:
Helping You Rank For SEO
Having reviews linked to your Google My Business listing helps the search engine recognize your authority and trustworthiness as a practice. As Google is centered around the user experience this recognition goes towards improving your visibility in search results.
If you are reviewed consistently and overall positively, Google will push you forward in returned search results with more frequency. Responding to all reviews both positive and negative also supports this.
Boost Your Presence Amongst The Competition
If you are one of a number of orthodontist practices in your area, reviews help patients identify why they should choose you over the competition. A great website and SEO can be delivered by multiple practices, but reviews are something real that comes direct from past patients and will often tip the balance in your favor.
Enhancing Your Reputation
Reputation is everything and nothing helps raise your profile like a plethora of online reviews. Reviews position you as an authority in your field and help to legitimize your advertising campaign messages.
Human beings are geared to follow the crowd, so if your orthodontist practice is popular and leading the way with many happy patients, more are likely to follow.
Up to 80% of consumers trust online reviews as much as they would trust a personal recommendation with 90% of these then reading through available reviews prior to making a decision. This serves to demonstrate how important Google reviews are when it comes to capturing new patient leads and converting them.
All these benefits combined lead to the growth of your business and a better bottom line which is the primary goal of most business owners.
What If I Receive Negative Or Lower Starred Reviews?
While it can be disheartening or distressing to receive less than glowing feedback it is not something to panic about. In fact, you can utilize negative or ambivalent feedback to your advantage.
The reality is, no one expects a business to be perfect all of the time. Many of us will see negative reviews and take them with a grain of salt, particularly if it is just one amongst many other positive reviews.
The most important thing when managing lower-starred reviews is to always reply and do so in a way that avoids going on the defensive. A rude reply to a review or one lacking in empathy can actually do more damage to your brand than the review itself.
When responding you should:
- Acknowledge the patient’s perspective of the situation, never make excuses.
- Apologize that their experience did not meet their expectations on this occasion.
- Offer to discuss their situation and secure a resolution.
In doing this, you publicly demonstrate your commitment to the patient and their satisfaction, regardless of their negative review. This helps position you as more trustworthy and dedicated to anyone reading these reviews and diffuses the impact of the negative review as a whole.
You may even find your handling of the negative review is what influences a new patient to make contact. Should you be able to rectify the patient’s concerns you may even find they edit their negative review and turn it into a positive one.
How Do I Get More Reviews?
Should your orthodontic practice not yet have any reviews, or have minimal reviews there are ways to encourage your patients to leave you some. These include but are not limited to:
- Asking them! As the old saying says, don’t ask, don’t get. Consumers and patients alike are used to receiving requests for feedback. It benefits your business in two ways, through more reviews and making the patient feel that you value their input.
- Sending a follow-up email or text following their appointment to check on their progress and include a link to leave a Google review.
- Add a review link to your social media profiles and website. Make this link easy to find and eye-catching.
- Include a ‘leave-behind card or message in their paperwork that encourages their feedback.
HIP – Expert Help From Trusted Professionals
At HIP we recognize that managing the accrual of and response to Google reviews can be overwhelming- this is particularly true for busy practices. We offer comprehensive, professional support to orthodontists looking to enhance their business visibility and grow their practice.
Through targeted SEO strategies which include Google Reviews, we deliver your practice renewed and sustainable business growth. Giving you the time you need to focus on your patients while we handle the complexities of digital marketing and the creation of an optimized online presence. As experts at turning prospects into profit, our highly skilled and friendly staff are the team you can trust. For more advice or support regarding Google reviews or any other digital marketing expertise, contact HIP today on 833.975.2585.