How to Get More Google Reviews for Your Clinic
With the competition for rankings and search share continually growing, reviews matter now more than ever before. Not only do reviews influence search engine rankings, they're considered one of the most integral factors to consumers when it comes to decision making and purchase behaviour - a huge 90% of consumers read reviews before visiting a business. Even if you're a well-established clinic looking for more paws through the door, new leads can still be secured through reviews.
What are the benefits of online reviews?
- Increased leads
- More clients
- Higher search engine ranking
- Cost-effective marketing tool
As you'd already know, potential clients want to feel assured they're taking their pet to a trustworthy clinic. The best way to provide this reassurance is to have reviews of your clinic online from other clients - it's not enough to just say you're the best as 91% of consumers between 18-34 consider an online review equally as reputable as a personal recommendation from a friend or family member!
1) It's pretty simple: just ask!
As the old saying goes, "it doesn't hurt to ask" and that certainly rings true when it comes to asking for reviews as well. Many people are happy to help, especially if they had a positive experience with your clinic. Consider how many clients you see everyday - if you're able to receive just one review by asking each of these clients, that's a fantastic result.
2) Claim Your Google My Business Listing
This might be a step that seems obvious, but if you're new to the digital marketing realm, it might be something you've overlooked. The most commonly used reviews (and the ones that affect rankings the most) are those given on Google reviews. However, there are other platforms where reviews can be put but more on that later. By doing so, you can ensure all your profile listings are up-to-date and you have the freedom to edit this information yourself. It also secures your listing from being acquired by a competitor or from other internet users suggesting edits to your information - if there are any suggested edits, you'll be notified because you've claimed the listing. This also allows you to engage with the reviews you receive.
3) Create "leave a review" card in your clinic's branding
While it helps to ask in person, we all know how easy it is to forget to do things. A very simple way to ask is by handing out a "leave a review" card post visit to the clinic while you ask is a great way to give a physical, hard-copy reminder to a client. Alternatively, if you have appointment reminder cards, adding a leave a review reminder on these is helpful as well.
4) Respond to clients who leave reviews
Whether a review you receive is positive or negative, it's important to engage with clients who have taken the time to write about their experiences. It's a step often overlooked; too many clinics don't engage with the feedback they're provided, missing out on the opportunity to show your clients that you care about their experience with your clinic. Overall, it's the polite thing to do to thank those who take the time to leave you a review.
But when it comes to responding to reviews, should you also answer negative ones? The answer is a huge yes. In fact, it's vital you do. While it's understandable to be angry or upset by negative reviews, it reflects positively on you if you show you're apologetic, empathetic and offering solutions to those who had a negative experience. Additionally, 82% of consumers seek out negative reviews in order to see how a business responds to them and also to reduce their skepticism if the reviews are suspiciously too positive.
Overall, when you respond to client reviews, it lets others who are considering leaving a review know that you do listen to feedback, ultimately encouraging them to write their own and overtime helping you build a foundation of reviews.
5) Utilise a Google My Business review link
Next time you're sending out an email or marketing campaign, don't forget to include your Google My Business review link. This is an easy way to get in touch with clients to encourage them to write a review without actually asking. For example, your email signature could say: Have we helped your pet? Help other pet owners find us by leading a review.
6) Don't forget other platforms!
While your Google reviews are incredibly important, don't forget about the power of social media and other consumer review networks. The likes of Facebook and Yelp are influential review tools worth utilising.
Social media is also a way to tactfully share any good reviews you do receive - it's a great way to show your thanks and appreciation to those who take the time to write you a review and help your business.
7) Don't pay for or incentivise reviews
Paying or rewarding those who do give you reviews can be risky legally speaking. It's best practice to just ask and encourage genuine reviews - incentives given for positive reviews can land you in hot water and depending on where you're located, also illegal.
8) Keep your clients happy
The most efficient way to get reviews is to deliver consistently good service to your clients and their pets. Though it certainly doesn't hurt to ask, the positive reviews and 5-star ratings may just come on their own!
- Reviews are an easy but highly influential marketing tool, especially for SEO purposes.
- The easiest way to get more reviews is to just ask!
- Responding to negative reviews is just as important as responding to positive ones - perhaps even more so!
- Consumers are influenced by both the positive & the negative.
- Create "leave a review" cards to give to clients post-appointment.
- Utilise other review platforms or social media such as Yelp or Facebook.
- Never provide incentives or pay for reviews.
For more information or help with Google My Business for vet clinics, feel free to call us at (07) 5636 3700 for more information, or book a consultation today with one of our veterinary marketing specialists.