Have you ever used Yelp to find a place to eat? How about to find a veterinarian? If Yelp is your top source to find anything from the best pizza in your neighborhood to a trustworthy vet, you are not alone. In 2015, Yelp had a reported monthly average of 89 million unique visitors.
If you are looking to grow your practice, you must act now to encourage, collect and monitor your online reviews. This can be intimidating if you are new to social media or online review sites. But don’t let fear hold you back from adopting this powerful marketing tool.
The first step is to claim your business’s page on Google, Yelp and Facebook. Once you have established your online presence on those sites, you can move on to secondary sites such as Healthgrades or Angie’s List. By claiming your profile, you gain some control over it. The following easy steps will help you get started by claiming your profile on online review sites.
- Put up pictures of your practice. Include photos of the dentist and the team. Do not use clinical pictures. Your pictures should welcome patients to your practice, not scare them.
- With patients’ signed permission, you may also include pictures of your patients with the team members. These pictures of your happy patients act as indirect endorsements for your care.
- Add videos. Google currently allows you to post videos and invite your customers to “see inside” the office to get a better feel for what you have to offer.
- Include your office hours and other helpful information about your office.
- Make sure that your practice address, website and phone numbers are correct and consistent among all of your profiles!
- List your services.
- At the time of this writing, Google and Yelp will send email notifications to the business owner when a review is posted. You are able to respond to any review.
Resisting engagement on online review sites is likely to cost you more potential patients than a few bad reviews. Positively engaging with your patients online makes you more trustworthy. Potential customers will view you as credible and technologically up-to-date. So don’t wait – complete your profile today!
For more guidance, click below to download our ebook The Dentist’s Guide to Online Reviews. Learn how to ask for reviews, how to respond to reviews and how to get more five-star reviews for your practice!
Dr. Gina Dorfman completed her dental training at the Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry in 2000 and shortly after she started her own practice near Los Angeles. Her passion for creating systems and leveraging technology to streamline practice operations is what eventually led her to co-found YAPI. Today, among practicing dentistry, she is a published author, a motivational speaker, and a frequent contributor to the many articles found on our blog!