Statistically speaking, good reviews are great to have.
The general public has become quite used to leaving, and trusting, online reviews. A whopping 97% of people use online media when researching local businesses, while 93% of all consumers say that online reviews have an impact on their buying decision. And while word-of-mouth is still a valuable marketing tool, 91% of 18-34 year olds trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation.
The numbers are just as compelling in your industry, with 78% of aesthetics consumers reporting that reviews and ratings are their “most influential” factors when picking a provider.
However, while 76% of patients will submit a review if asked, not every patient will fully understand exactly how to do it. After all, not everyone is familiar enough with computer or smartphone technology to feel comfortable navigating the process, especially once they have left your office.
With that in mind, here are some ideas that could help make it easier for the less tech savvy among us to contribute their reviews.
No time like the present
One of the best times to solicit a review from a customer is while they are still in the office. Again, most people are happy to leave a review once asked, and bringing it up while they are still in the office also allows you to nip any technological fears in the bud.
- Have a staff member offer to help the patient through the process on their smartphone
- Be sure to allow the patient privacy once they are ready to leave the actual review
- Once finished, a staff member should ensure the review was recorded, thanking the patient for their time
Easy as 1, 2, 3
Perhaps a patient might be willing to leave a review, but won’t be able to do it right then and there. Or, you might want to send a follow up to other customers who haven’t left a review yet. In either case, creating a set of step-by-step instructions could help eliminate any hesitation from your less technically savvy patients.
Consider crafting an easy to understand, step-by-step guide detailing exactly how to leave a review. You might even want to include screenshots and a reminder that your staff is available to assist if necessary. This guide can be printed and given to patients as they are leaving, as well as included in email or snail mail correspondence.
Point them in the right direction
Another tip to help make it easier for patients to leave reviews is to set up a “vanity URL” — an easy-to-remember website address that redirects visitors to a webpage you choose. For instance, instead of a long, complicated website address, customers would only have to remember to visit www.YOURPRACTICENAME.com/reviews to get sent directly to your review submission page.
Key takeaways and next steps
- Most people will submit a review if asked
- Not every patient is comfortable with technology
- When asking for reviews, offer to assist every patient — you never know who might be uncomfortable doing it on their own
- Create a vanity URL. (RealSelf Network Doctors have the exclusive ability to customize their web address on RealSelf. To learn more and apply, visit realself.com/network.)
- Create a set of easy-to-follow instructions. Make sure it’s reviewed and tested by multiple members of your staff on different devices, and modified if necessary. Give to any patient that isn’t going to submit a review while they are in the office. Send it as a follow-up to patients that have not left a review.
All of these tips can not only help reduce the amount of hesitation that less technically-savvy patients might have toward logging on to leave a review, but can make the entire review process easier in general, even for those who don’t have any tech aversions. By remembering to simply ask, as well as reducing any potential hindrances, you’ll likely see an increase in positive ratings, which can in turn help attract and convert new customers.