One Pathway to Success
There are a lot of ways that a business can grow. Dental practices are no different. A goal for any dental practice is to keep successfully giving those great oral health outcomes. It goes without saying that the most important parts of any dental practice are those positive outcomes for patients. Your primary focus is serving your patients.
However, getting the word out about that good work is paramount! A truly significant pathway for growth is through reputation. Management of that reputation is an important investment.
Let’s see how.
Online Reviews: the Numbers
The cornerstone of reputation management is the online review. An online review can really
make or break a practice. However, what we know is that negative reviews are fairly uncommon. Only about 1% of consumers choose to leave what could be described as ‘very negative reviews. And only about 10% of consumers leave what could be described as ‘somewhat negative’ reviews. What this shows us is that, by and large, online reviews are a powerful source of positive feedback about your dental practice.
The BrightLocal Consumer Review Survey of 2020 noted that 84% of people now trust an online review as much as they would a personal recommendation. The same survey also noted that 91% of consumers read those online reviews. This is a 20% jump from the number of people reading online reviews ten years ago.
This is significant. Your potential patients will trust a positive online review about your practice. This positive review will directly influence their decision to book an appointment.
But even more significantly, another survey in 2020 collected even more important statistics about online reviews. The Master Patient Experience Survey (quoted here) discovered that no less than 71% of potential patients use online reviews to choose a new practice.
We see a direct link here. The majority of your new patients will come directly from online reviews. At Intiveo, we have learned that that is true for both general dentistry and OMS practices.
Patients are particularly reliant on Google reviews. Going back to that BrightLocal Consumer Review Survey, we see from their findings that 88% of people will only look at Google reviews. The advantages of Google reviews don’t stop there. 35% of Google’s algorithm relies on reviews.
There is no reason not to harness the power of online reviews. Let your patients tell others how amazing your practice is! What follows is your practice’s growth.
Google Reviews in Action
The internet is a community meeting place. News and suggestions are exchanged every day, all over the world. You want your name to come up again and again at the community meeting place. As we’ve learned, people trust an online review as much as they trust a recommendation from a close friend or family member.
Let’s see this in action. Kim is 27 and has just gotten his first salaried job with benefits, including dental. He’s able to go to the dentist for the first time since he graduated from university. But, since it’s been years since he’s gone to the dentist, he doesn’t really know where to start.
Enter Google reviews.
Kim Google-searches ‘dentist’ in his city. The algorithm privileges several dentists with consistent reviews over 4.7 stars. Kim notices that one sets itself apart by offering a reduced fee for teeth cleanings on your first visit. Another features two reviews by people who hadn’t been to the dentist in a number of years. Yet another dentist offers an at-home teeth-whitening kit. Kim makes a decision that best suits his needs. From the review, he clicks through to the website – where they have a ‘Book Now’ button on the home page.
Or, consider Jo. Jo is 65. She has just moved to a new town, after her retirement. She had been going to the same dentist for over 20 years! Jo wants to choose a dentist she feels really sure about.
Again, enter Google reviews.
Jo finds several dentists with consistent reviews of 4.7 stars. One practice has served the community for 30 years. Another is just down the road from Jo’s new house. Yet another has an all-female team, something which Jo admires. Jo makes a decision accordingly about who her new dentist will be, based on these reviews.
What do we notice about Kim and Jo’s experiences of reading online reviews?
- Both Kim and Jo were new patients. Reputation management is a key part of attracting new patients to your practice.
- Reviews raised these dental practices’ online visibility. The consistent, positive reviews for these dental practices contributed to them being privileged by the Google algorithm.
- Each practice’s distinctiveness was featured. When your patients give feedback about your practice, often, the most important things to them are highlighted. Your location, your offerings, and your authentic voice are all things that patients will get excited about – and talk about in reviews! This helps you stand out from your competitors. Your uniqueness is there for everyone to see.
- These reviews added credibility to these dental practices. Jo and Kim were able to read reviews from other satisfied patients. These patients were people who had direct experience of these dental practices. This fosters trust and credibility for your practice. It also gives your dental practice a sense of authority.
At Intiveo, we have had the opportunity to see the results of dental practices investing in reputation management. The key way that this was done was through reputation management software – which we’ll discuss in a later blog! For example, Blue Water Dental & Lighthouse Dental Centre saw a 200% increase in patient reviews. They are not the only ones! Altoona Centre for Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery likewise saw a 95% increase in patient reviews. We continued to see this return on investment at Conestoga Oral Surgery, where they began to see 100 patient reviews a month.
You will truly see the returns when you invest in reputation management.
Reputation management offers successful growth to your dentistry practice.
Online reviews from your patients give your practice credibility. Not only that, they boost you in the Google algorithm. This gives you that all-important online visibility! When you invest in reputation management, you also open pathways to new patients to find your practice!
Join many other general dentistry and OMS practices – get started with Intiveo’s Social Review Add-On today!