Online Reviews Impact Landing Page Conversions

It’s no secret we believe reviews have become an essential part of running a successful practice (read more in Online Reviews: Can Your Practice Afford to Ignore Them When Your Patients Are Not and Reviews, Online Reputation, and the Success of Your Practice), but what about including patient reviews on a landing page?

BrightLocal, which provides local search marketing tools for agencies, consultants, and local businesses, recently conducted a study to determine how online reviews impact landing page conversion. Their research shows that putting reviews on landing pages helps boost conversion by 12 percent. This isn’t a big surprise to us, and we have been encouraging our doctors to do this for some time.

Let’s take a look at the specifics of the study.

Reviews Continue to Be an Important Part of the Buying Process

In their 2016 Local Consumer Review Study, BrightLocal discovered the following statistics:

  • 74 percent of consumers say that positive reviews make them trust a local business more
  • 84 percent of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations
  • 54 percent of people will visit a company’s website after reading positive reviews

BrightLocal wanted to take these facts a step further to find out if these reviews helped build trust and how promoting a firm’s reputation would impact landing page conversion.

The Latest Findings on Consumer Trust and Landing Page Conversions

For their experiment, BrightLocal divided their participants into two groups: a control group of 30 percent of the participants who were showed landing pages that had no ratings or reviews displayed, and test groups with the rest of the participants who were shown different landing pages, some with reviews and some without.

According to BrightLocal: “The panelists were asked to imagine they were searching online for a local plumber, florist or realtor. We showed the consumers two landing pages—one page that highlighted an actual customer’s review about the business and another page where the business said they were the ‘dependable’ company.

“For this research study, we tracked whether consumers picked the businesses with or without the customer review on the landing pages. Additionally, we asked consumers to give us feedback on a variety of other factors that impacted their decisions and opinions of these ‘sample’ businesses.”

landing page conversions

The results showed that 83 percent found the business with the consumer review on the landing page to be trustworthy. And 15 percent of survey participants felt the business without reviews was not trustworthy.

landing page conversions

When asked how likely they would be to contact the business with reviews, 74 percent of people said they would versus 62 percent of people who said they would contact the business with no reviews.

You can read BrightLocal’s full results here.

Questions About Using Patient Reviews on Your Website?

If you have questions about conversion rates or online reviews, contact us at
877-322-4440 Ext. 101.

 

Online Reviews: Can Your Practice Afford to Ignore Them When Your Patients Are Not?

The statistics are telling: 92% of consumers read online reviews for local businesses. The fact is, however, that even though far too many local businesses continue to ignore the importance of online reviews, their potential customers are not.

We wrote an article recently about how important it is for businesses to manage their online reputation which presented the results of a survey conducted by local search specialists at BrightLocal. Their survey results were revisited at the recent SMX West SEO and SEM Conference.

online reviews

SMX West and the Value of Online Reviews

Search Engine Land columnist Greg Gifford recapped a session from the expo by Thomas Ballantyne, who is director of marketing at a local business, about the value of online reviews.

There were several valuable takeaways from the article:

  • More than half of people looking for a local business trust content that has been generated by past customers over any information they can get from a company website or in a news article. Ballantyne explained that “people trust reviews written by other people much more than anything written on your website, which is why it’s so important for business owners to focus on their online reviews.”
  • Your brand’s message? It’s owned by your customers—or in the case of ProspectaMarketing readers, your patients.
  • Ballantyne points out that “reviews are the crossroads of social media and transactions.” Reviews aren’t going away—and businesses can’t afford to ignore them because their customers are not.
  • According to Ballantyne, getting great reviews is simple: “First, you’ve got to provide good customer service. You’ve got to hire people who will love your customers. Second, you just have to ask. If you ask customers to leave a review, most of them will do it—but most businesses never ask for reviews.”

Use Online Reviews to Your Practice’s Advantage

Are you doing all that you can with your online reputation? Are you asking your happy patients to leave reviews? We offer a tool that sends a review request directly to patients’ phones. It’s easy to use—for team members and patients!—and is highly effective in growing your online reviews.

If you need help managing your online reputation, contact us at 877-322-4440 Ext. 101.

 

10 Tips for Creating Impactful Patient Testimonials

Patient testimonials are a great addition to your website, Facebook page, or YouTube channel. People enjoy seeing other patients talk about their positive experiences with your practice. Reviews not only enhance your web presence and online reputation, but they can have huge impact on whether or not a patient decides to make an appointment with your practice.

Tips for Recording Patient Testimonials

patient testimonialsIf you are going to record a video of your patients, be sure that you are getting a great quality video. Here are some helpful tips:

  • Have correct lighting. Try to avoid a windowless room with just fluorescent lights and don’t have the light source directly behind or above your subject. Have your patient sit by a window with natural light to their side or in front of them.
  • Invest in a good microphone. A Lavalier microphone will ensure there is no echoing or other issues caused by bad sound.
  • Be sure the microphone can hear them. Don’t stand so far away that the microphone can’t pick up their voice. If you are interested, there are a variety of clip on microphones available that you can attach to the patients shirt and then plug the microphone adapter into your iPhone.
  • Make sure your patients are comfortable. Stuart Anderson, who creates professional video productions for the Crown Council, a prestigious group of dentists committed to continual improvement, recommends that they should be sitting or standing in a relaxed position that is conducive to a conversation.
  • Make eye contact. Anderson also recommends that subjects not look at the camera while they are speaking: “They are less likely to do so if you make good eye contact,” he says.
  • Note where you are placing your subject. Make sure there’s nothing odd in the background. That fern on your windowsill may look lovely, but make sure it doesn’t look like its growing out of your subject’s head.
  • Invest in a tripod. You don’t need to spend lots of money and rent a lot of video equipment, but make sure you have a tripod or a way to hold the camera very steady. If you are filming with an iPhone, always hold the camera horizontally. This will result in much better looking videos when you upload them and watch them on computer screens and TVs.
  • Don’t use zoom. Instead of zooming, physically move the camera forward. If filming with your phone, using zoom will work but will reduce the quality of the video.
  • Try Q & A style interview. You can email your patient the questions beforehand so they have their answers in mind. Then when you film them, have someone off camera ask them the questions and have them respond to the interviewer that is off camera. This way you can get concise direct answers instead of a stream of consciousness that sometimes happens when people are being filmed.
  • Have patients sign a consent form. Before using any patient testimonials online, you must have them sign a consent form giving their permission for you to do so.

You don’t need to spend a lot of money to get great patient testimonials. It only takes a few minutes of a patient’s time and can really help to improve the quality of your online presence.

Questions About Patient Testimonials?

If you have questions about getting patient testimonials for your own practice, contact us at
877-322-4440 Ext. 101.

Reviews, Online Reputation, and the Success of Your Practice

Anyone running a small- or medium-sized business is aware that their online reputation is becoming more and more important if they are to be successful. In spite of this, however, business owners are not always paying enough attention to their online reviews. They may not realize that online reviews can have a huge impact on whether or not a customer decides to purchase a product or service.

For the past six years, the local search specialists at BrightLocal have conducted a survey on online reviews to help small- to medium-sized businesses and digital marketing agencies understand how they influence purchasing decisions.

The results make it clear that online reputation needs to be taken seriously by all business owners, and that includes those running a dental or medical practice.

Reviews, Online Reputation, and the Success of Your PracticeWhat the Online Survey Research Results Found

BrightLocal’s survey explored just how consumers read and use online reviews, and whether or not the reviews influenced their buying decisions.

In a nutshell, the results showed:
• 84 percent of survey participants trust online reviews just as much as a personal recommendation
• 90 percent of consumers read fewer than 10 reviews before they form an opinion about a business
• 74 percent of those surveyed say that positive reviews make them trust a local business more
• 73 percent of consumers report that reviews that are three months or older are not as important as more current reviews
• 54 percent of those surveyed say that after reading positive reviews, their next step is to visit the business’s website

According to the survey, the most commonly read reviews by consumers are for the following categories restaurants and hotels and bed and breakfasts, with medical/healthcare professionals coming in third place.

Reviews, Online Reputation, and the Success of Your Practice

What the Online Survey Research Results Mean for Your Practice

The number of consumers using the Internet to find local businesses continues to increase.

BrightLocal’s take on the reasons for the growth is simple: “Over the past few years, many local businesses have realized the importance of optimizing their online presence for the local market by claiming their Google My Business or Bing Places for Business pages, creating location-specific pages on their website, adding Google Maps to their site and other local SEO strategies.

“Additionally, Google shows online reviews in many search engine results pages, and they even recently started adding third-party review sites and reviews to a business’s Knowledge Panel.”

The bottom line? Reviews are everywhere. And your potential customers are reading them. But rather than fear them, you should see them as an opportunity to engage and receive feedback about your practice.

Why Your Practice Needs an Online Reputation Strategy

For your practice’s continued success, you must monitor what patients are saying in online reviews. You should also have a way to get positive reviews from happy patients.

Why? Because potential patients will read the most recent reviews first; if those reviews are negative, they may not read past them to get to the positive reviews—even if there are more positive than negative. New positive reviews will push the negative reviews down the list.

Reviews, Online Reputation, and the Success of Your Practice

It should be noted here that reviews for dental and medical practices tend to have a longer shelf life than, for instance, restaurants; this is probably because people visit restaurants and other businesses on a more frequent basis. That said, however, it is still critical to have a steady flow of new reviews as an ongoing part of running a successful practice.

How are you handling your reviews? Are you asking happy patients to leave reviews after they visit your practice? According to BrightLocal, seven out of 10 consumers will leave a review for a business—if they’re asked to do so.

Find Out More About This Year’s Survey

Do you want to see even more questions and answers, as well as a deeper analysis of the results of this year’s survey? You can read the full 2016 Local Consumer Review Survey here.

Questions? Need Help Managing Your Online Reputation?

If you have questions about the survey or would like help managing your own online reputation, contact us at
877-322-4440 Ext. 101.

Do You Have A Five Star Practice?

Think your practice’s online reviews don’t matter? Think again.

While you may think that having a fully optimized website is where to put your focus (and we agree!) don’t underestimate the power of online reviews. In the past couple of years, people have grown heavily reliant on online reviews for everything from hair salons to restaurants to mechanics. Searching for a dentist isn’t any different. As humans, we want to know we’re getting the best service possible. A recent Bright Local SEO survey showed that nearly 90% of online customers trust anonymous reviews almost as much as a personal recommendation. Your reviews matter.

Get 5 Star Reviews For Your PracticeWe have a client who had an optimized profile but no reviews on Google+. We challenged them to ask some patients to leave reviews. Their front desk team rose to the challenge and were able to get a handful of patients to write reviews. In no time, the number of their prospective patients grew because, as residents of a smaller town, this practice was now the only 5-star practice in town.

We know you are offering excellent care and service to your patients. Make sure that is reflected in what people are saying about you online. If reviews aren’t something you’ve made an effort to curate, now is the time to start to ask the simple question “Would you be willing to share your experience today with other patients who haven’t visited our practice yet?” It’s a simple way to make sure that the service and care you’re providing in office is reflected online. Have questions on how to get started? Contact ProspectaMarketing and learn more.

How To React To Negative Reviews Online

The importance of having a strong online presence is increasing as reviews on local listing sites such as Google Maps, Yahoo Local, Bing Local and Yelp are becoming more of a factor for ranking your business. We all want our business to have five star reviews across the board, but what should you do if you receive a negative review? Step one: take a deep breath.

Negative reviews are an unfortunate reality of any customer service industry. But they don’t always mean the downfall of your company. Here are some ways to react if you receive a negative review:

  • Try to resolve the issue with the reviewer directly. If you recognize the patient from their comments and why they may have reacted this way, try to contact them to see if you can address their concerns and come to a resolution. If they are satisfied, ask them if they could remove the negative feedback.
  • If a resolution cannot be met, it’s a good idea to respond publicly to the review as the business owner on the site. The customer may not be happy, but you will be able to present yourself as professional and responsive to feedback by explaining what happened and how you will rectify the situation in the future. Is the reviewer’s complaint legitimate? Take a moment to see if you can enact a change in your office that will be an overall improvement in the service you provide for future patients.
  • Use the public reply as an opportunity spin the negative into a positive and explain something about the practice that wouldn’t be known otherwise. For instance, do you offer a 100% patient satisfaction guarantee or their money back? Mention this.
  • Finally, and most importantly, bury the negative with positive reviews. There are a number of ways to encourage your patients to leave reviews. Whether it is through an e-mail request with a link to your review page, a QR code poster that lets them leave a review from their cell phone or having a device in the practice office that lets them leave immediate feedback, reviews are a vital part of improving your local listing search rankings.

So next time you get a negative review- stay calm. This is a chance to improve your service and turn a person who had a negative experience into another satisfied customer.

Google Places 3rd Party Reviews Disappear

The news from Google that they will not post 3rd party reviews (only links to them) has created concern for many dental practices that rely on local internet marketing. For some time now, we have always recommended having patient reviews directly in the search engines as well as using third party review sites.  Now that these third party reviews have disappeared from Google Places (other than to have a link to them), it is important to have a strategy to get reviews posted directly in Google.  During the past few weeks, we have discussed a variety of approaches with dental practices.  Here are some strategies to consider.

• Some patient reminder systems for dental practices such as SmileReminder and DemandForce can automatically invite your patients to go into the search engines and write reviews after an office visit.  This is a great way to keep a steady flow of reviews coming into the search engines, but there is a monthly cost.

• Send your own e-mails out to your patients with a link to your local listing. We can help you format an e-mail with links directly to your local listings where they can write a review.  Give them some help with instructions.  Contact us if you would like to some help formatting these e-mails.

• Use QR codes to help direct patients to your local listings using their smart phones.   It will make it easy for them to find you, and they can use their smart phone to write a review and share their experience with others.

• Consider a simple reminder such as a business card with the address of your local listing on it that your patients can take home with them.  Make is convenient.

Reviews are gaining more and more attention from consumers, and it is important to pay attention to this area of your marketing.

20 Ways to Win with Internet Dental Marketing

We just returned from the Crown Council Annual Event in San Antonio. What a great group of Eagles who flock together in this organization to learn from each other, improve their practices and give back. It was a great opportunity to spend a few days with those who attended.

On Saturday afternoon, I presented a workshop on “20 Ways to Win with Internet Marketing”.  The internet has become a critical source of new patient traffic, but doing it right makes all the difference. If you did not have a chance to attend, here is a list that we shared with those who were there, broken into three areas:

Strategy Development
1.  Effective Targeting
2.  Proper Messaging
3.  Consistent Branding
4.  Channel Strategies
5.   Results Analysis

Driving Traffic
6.  Meaningful SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
7.   Targeted Paid Advertising (PPC)
8.   Hard-Working Domain Name(s)
9.   Informative Website Content
10. Purposeful Blogging
11.  Optimized Video
12. Newsworthy Press Releases
13. Developed Social Sites
14. Enhanced Local Listings
15. Online Testimonials
16. Targeted Micro-Sites

Converting Prospects
17. Enticing Promotions
18. Innovative Phone Tool
19. Immediate Click to Call
20. Convenient Lead Form

Bonus

• Follow-up

• Continual Tracking to Learn What is Working

There was much more in our discussion.  However, in considering ways to reach and convert key prospects as part of your internet dental marketing, this is a good starting list of things that will help you achieve success.

Internet Reviews – Not to Fear

With the increase in online reviews for dental services and other local businesses, dentists sometimes raise concerns about the lack of control about what is said online. A recent survey of online reviews found that they are largely positive. Like word of mouth, a great experience or a very negative one is more likely to spawn a review.

Here are a few excerpts from a front page Wall Street Journal Article on October 5, 2009 that provide some interesting insights into online reviews.

On the Internet, Everyone’s a Critic But They’re Not Very Critical

Average Review Is 4.3 Out of Five Stars; Jerkface Fights Back and Gets Bounced

By GEOFFREY A. FOWLER and JOSEPH DE AVILA

The Web can be a mean-spirited place. But when it comes to online reviews, the Internet is a village where the books are strong, YouTube clips are good-looking and the dog food is above average.

One of the Web’s little secrets is that when consumers write online reviews, they tend to leave positive ratings: The average grade for things online is about 4.3 stars out of five.

Many companies have noticed serious grade inflation. Google Inc.’s YouTube says the videos on its site average 4.6 stars, because viewers use five-star ratings to “give props” to video makers. Buzzillions.com, which aggregates reviews from 3,000 sites, has tracked millions of reviews and has spotted particular exuberance for products such as printer paper (average: 4.4 stars), boots (4.4) and dog food (4.7).

If the rest of the Internet is filled with nasty celebrity blogs and email flame wars, what makes product reviews sites so lovey-dovey? “If you inspire passion in somebody in a good way or a bad way, that is when they want to write a review,” says Russell Dicker, the senior manager of community at Amazon.

His boss, Amazon’s Chief Executive Jeff Bezos, follows that pattern. He has posted five-star reviews for products like Tuscan brand whole milk and some “ridiculously good cookies” sold on the site. Mr. Bezos’s only non-five-star review: one star for a science-fiction movie, “The 13th Warrior.”

Culture may play a role in the positivism: Ratings in the U.K. average an even higher 4.4, reports Bazaarvoice. But the largest contributor may be human nature. Marketing research firm Keller Fay Group surveys 100 consumers each day to ask them about what products they mentioned to friends in conversation. “There is an urban myth that people are far more likely to express negatives than positives,” says Ed Keller, the company’s chief executive. But on average, he finds that 65% of the word-of-mouth reviews are positive and only 8% are negative.

Some suspect companies goose their ratings. This summer TripAdvisor.com, which averages just above a four, posted warnings that some of its hotel reviews may have been written by hotel managers. But review sites say the incidence of fakes is tiny, and many pay people to delete puffery.Other sites admit they have a positivity problem and are taking novel steps to curb the enthusiasm. One way is to redefine average. Reviews of eBay.com’s millions of merchants were so positive that eBay made 4.3 out of five stars its minimum service standard. Beginning this month, it is switching to a system that counts just the number of one- and two-star reviews. Sellers who get more than 3% to 4% of those ratings could get kicked off of eBay.

Another site, Goodrec, decided to ditch the five-star rating system altogether, replacing it with a thumbs-up and thumbs-down system. Amazon now highlights what it dubs “the most helpful critical review” at the top of its reviews page.

Jeremy Stoppelman, chief executive of Yelp.com, which posts reviews of local businesses in cities around the country, bragged in September that his site’s reviews were more diverse. The average review on Yelp is 3.8. Many assume online reviews are “only rants or raves, resulting in consumer Web sites composed solely of ratings on the extremes,” he blogged. “A broader range of opinions can give consumers a more complete view of a business,” he says.

What can we take from this? Providing outstanding customer service in your dental practice leaves you nothing to fear. Going beyond the expected to make their experience in your dental office exceptional and will likely eventually help you develop exceptional reviews online. Paying attention to your online reputation as a portion of your internet dental marketing strategy also pays off.

Building Your Online Reputation

In the past, dental practices relied on satisfied patients to spread the word with their friends and acquaintances. Today, more and more patients are going online to share their experiences with friends and many others they don’t even know. While reviews have been online for several years for books, electronics and sellers on eBay, reviews are just gaining hold for local service providers.  This is an important developing area of the internet that makes sense to cultivate. While what others were saying about your practice was fairly invisible in the past, now word of mouth is online and visible for years.

Following are some excerpts from an October 2, 2009 Wall Street Journal article by Raymund Flandez that suggest some tips for improving your online reputation.

Three Best Ways to Improve Your Online Reputation

By RAYMUND FLANDEZ

These days, a great danger lurks just a few clicks away: the online review. By Googling your company’s name, anyone can read and track your business’s performance – including missteps, poor service or less-than-stellar products.

Protecting your company’s reputation is now a 24-hour vigil. Negative reviews – whether they’re merited or not – can turn away potential customers and vendors, and reflect badly on your company’s brand.

The good news is that small-business owners can be proactive in securing positive reviews by asking satisifed customers to share their experiences. But what if it’s already too late?

Here are the three best ways to improve your online reputation:

1. Reach out immediately to dissatisfied reviewers. Their negative comments don’t need to be the end of the conversation. Small-business owners should attempt a dialogue, experts say, as complainers might improve the review or take down the post. Oguz Ucanlar, president of SpaForever LLC in Chicago, managed to turn around bad reviews on Yelp.com by contacting the aggrieved posters. He apologized, explained the situation and offered the reviewers discounts or a free massage. The result? One bad review was deleted, and the spa’s overall rating went up. “I take it really seriously,” he says. It also helps that Yelp now allows business owners to respond publicly to any customer comment, giving others a window into how the business treats its most finicky customers.

When a bad review surfaces, an apology goes a long way, says Lisa Barone, co-founder of Outspoken Media Inc., a Spring Hill, Fla., Internet marketing company. “Most people just want to be heard,” she says. “They just want to know you’re listening and you care, and that you’re going to try and fix it.”

Keep in mind that a negative review can sometimes be helpful. Case in point: an online customer of Nationwide Candy LLC of Albuquerque, N.M., complained after she received the wrong bubblegum product. Turns out, the candy wholesaler had posted an incorrect image on its site. “It just casted a bad image on us,” says Ken Hanson, its general manager, who immediately corrected the error.

2. Flood search engines with content you can control. Use digital media’s reach to your full advantage, says Evan Bailyn, founder of First Page Sage LLC, a New York search engine optimization company. Mr. Bailyn says he often helps clients put “good publicity on top to knock bad publicity off the first page” of search engine results. To do that, he suggests releasing press releases through prnewswire.com or pr.com and building Twitter, Facebook and YouTube accounts since these social-media sites show up high on search results. “The overall strategy is inundating the Google results with as much good or neutral content as possible so that the bad seems like an anomaly,” Mr. Bailyn says.

3. Appeal to bloggers to review your company or your product. Getting others to weigh in can be an effective way to generate neutral or positive reviews to counteract negative ones. Influential bloggers in your niche market can bring instant credibility to a company. If you already know bloggers in your industry, read or reach others by simply scanning their blogrolls, a handy list (typically placed in the sidebar) of potential contacts. Alert them to news about your product or service as a first step in building the relationship.

For your dental practice, one of the ways you can take control of your online reputation is to invite your satisfied patients to provide reviews.  This is easy to do with a simple e-mail invitation that includes a link to your listing on a site such as Google Maps or Yahoo Local where they can write a review.  ProspectaMarketing assists dentists with this by building their local online listing with helpful information about the practice and then providing e-mail templates that can be sent to their patients to write reviews.  It is easy to implement and just requires some ongoing attention and effort.

Some dentists have concerns about the lack of control over reviews.  The best defense is a well-run practice.  However, even the best practices may have a dissatisfied customer from time to time.  One doctor of an excellent practice had a dissatisfied patient who wrote a negative review and had her husband write a negative review as if he were a patient also.  After a phone call to discuss their concerns, they agreed to remove the reviews.  Sometimes just showing you hear them and will resolve their concerns will resolve the problem and maybe even create greater loyalty.