Taking positive action: How to get reviews for your practice
By John Vuong
By John Vuong
As a small business, your reputation is vital. You want to make sure that everyone understands that your practice provides high-quality, knowledgeable care.
One of the best ways to do this is by using reviews. As many as 88% of people trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. Potential clients are interested in knowing what experiences other customers have had with your company.
How do you get reviews? Many times it’s as simple as asking. During this health crisis, with many small businesses closed, may be the perfect time to build up your profile of online reviews.
Here are some tips:
Ask For Reviews Today
If you’ve never asked for reviews, or it’s been a while, there’s no time like right now. The fact that people are stuck at home due to COVID-19 means they are spending more time online anyway. It’s easy for them to leave reviews.
You can reach out to your past clients through email now, since you may not be operating your office. You can also post on social media with an invitation to leave a review as well. The key is to start right away.
Focus Your Review Platforms
You may see advice that you should get reviews on as many platforms as possible, but the truth is quite the opposite. The goal is to get all of your reviews in one place, so people can see a rating based on dozens of clients or more. After all, 86 reviews have a lot more impact than six.
Google is the ideal place to direct all of your reviews. Google My Business is a powerful tool for search engine optimization (SEO) and including reviews helps build your trustworthiness in Google’s eyes. That means you’re more likely to rank highly in search and show up in the Local Pack when people search for your services.
Make Reviews Part of Your Follow-Up
Once you’ve reached out today to get your reviews started, you want to build a process where you ask for reviews from every client, usually twice.
For instance, you could include a reminder to leave a review on Google in an email or text receipt, and then mention it again when you’re reminding people to make their next appointment.
Refining your follow-up process is another productive thing to do during the lockdown. Think about how you can encourage people to make multiple appointments, along with where you can stick in invitations to leave you online reviews.
Answer Every Review – Good or Bad
Many small businesses are very afraid of a bad review. They don’t want anyone to see negative comments about them.The truth is, though, that they happen to everyone. In fact, having only positive reviews is suspicious to most discerning clients.
The best way to handle reviews – good or bad – is simply to reply. You can thank people for kind words and apologize for those who’ve had a bad experience. The other thing you want to do is to offer to resolve the issue offline.
When you respond kindly to negative reviews others see it, and it makes a positive impression. It helps people have confidence that they’ll get excellent service from you.
Use Reviews to Boost Your Brand
The COVID-19 crisis has been frustrating for small business owners, especially those who’ve had to close. It’s easy to feel helpless.
But when you can take positive action to build your brand without leaving your home, it can make a big difference. Stay active, post on social media, and continue to build relationships. Ask for reviews, and encourage people to see your services as an important way to de-stress.
When you’re able to reopen, you could find that you’ve cultivated even more clients than you had before, simply because you focused on marketing. That’s a big win!
John Vuong is the owner and founder of Local SEO Search. He helps small and medium-sized businesses rank on Google and dominate their local market. He puts a strong emphasis on relationships and wants to not only help his client’s rank, but to help their business grow and succeed.