Online reputation management – the practice of paying attention to what is being posted about your business online, particularly when it comes to reviews and feedback – is becoming a bigger part of managing any company in our digital world. For dental practices, though, keeping tabs on an online reputation is especially important. That’s because it can literally make or break your dental practice for new patients.
To help you understand why reviews from previous and existing patients might determine who does or doesn’t call you for their next appointment, here are a few things you should consider…
Unless you are opening up a brand-new dental practice, patients are already posting feedback of their experiences with your office online. These will include their opinions of pricing and dental care, of course, but also the cleanliness of your office, the friendliness of your staff, and so on. It makes sense for you to keep tabs on these opinions, both so you can be aware of your reputation and to look for areas of improvement for the future.
While existing patients might not bother checking your reviews online, you can bet new ones will. What they see will be every bit as important as your location, or which insurance plans you accept. That’s particularly true for patients who might be nervous about seeing a dentist or have a need for extensive restorative work. They want to be sure they’re finding the best fit, so they are likely to dig deeply into the feedback about your practice.
There are a lot of things you can do to make sure your online reputation grows in the right direction. It all starts with providing great dental care, of course, but you can also proactively encourage patients to say positive things about you on the web. Let your staff know how crucial online reviews are, and note any areas of concern that seem to pop up again and again in your feedback. Also, don’t forget that you can respond to reviews directly on most patient sites and social media platforms.
While reviews are the most important part of your online reputation, it’s also important that your contact details, office locations and hours, etc., also remain up-to-date. And, you’ll want to be sure that the patients who are leaving reviews for your practice aren’t confusing you with a colleague. Otherwise, the internet could give out conflicting information about where you are and what you do.
It would be nice if you could simply provide great service in your dental practice and watch the positive word-of-mouth spread. However, if you want to maximize the odds that patients will keep coming through your front door, it’s a good idea to take control of your online reputation and steer it in the right direction.
See how your office is ranking by completing the form below and get a free review of your online reputation.