The Importance of Getting Online Reviews for Your Animal Hospital
In the ever-growing competition for higher rankings and more search engine visibility, reviews have become increasingly important. Not only do reviews affect where your website ranks in search results, but they’re also one of the most significant factors that consumers take into account when making decisions about whether or not to buy from a business – an astonishing 90% of consumers read reviews before visiting a store or company’s website. Securing new leads doesn’t have to be difficult, even if you’re an established clinic. Posting reviews is a great way to bring in more business.
Why Online Reviews Matter for Veterinarians
“More leads, clients, and a higher search engine ranking- all achieved without spending more money on marketing,” says DJ Vallauri, Founder & CEO of the VET Marketing Agency.
91% of consumers between 18-34 consider an online review just as reputable as a personal recommendation – so if you want to show potential clients that your clinic is trustworthy, the best way to do it is by having reviews from other clients online.
Receiving rave reviews for your veterinary clinic can be challenging, but it’s not impossible. Check out our tips on how to get more positive feedback from clients.
1. You’ll be surprised at how easy it is: simply ask!
If you don’t ask, you won’t receive it. This idiom is especially correct when requesting reviews. Many people are willing to help, particularly if they had a good experience with your clinic. Reflect on how many clients visit your clinic every day – if you’re able to get just one review from each client, that’s amazing progress.
2. Claim Your Google Business Listing
A step that might seem obvious but could be easily overlooked if you’re new to digital marketing is this: The most commonly used reviews are given on Google. These types of reviews hold more weight and affect rankings significantly. Posting reviews on other platforms is not only a great way to increase your business’s credibility, but it also allows you the freedom to edit this information yourself. It also secures your listing from being acquired by a competitor or from other internet users suggesting edits to your information. If there are any suggested edits, you’ll be notified because you’ve claimed the listing. This also allows you to contact those who have left reviews and further engage with them.
3. Print out cards with your clinic’s branding that says “leave a review” on them.
Oftentimes, the best way to ask for a review is in person. However, we are human and sometimes forgetful. A great solution? Provide “leave a review” cards post-visit at your clinic as a physical reminder for clients. If you have appointment reminder cards already, take advantage of this and add leave-a-review reminders on these as well.
4. You should always take the time to respond to clients who take their valuable time to leave you a review.
It’s always beneficial to engage with customers who have written reviews, no matter if they are positive or negative. Too many businesses overlook this step and miss out on connecting with their clients. Engaging with feedback shows that you care about your client’s experience, and it is simply good manners to thank those who leave you a review.
While it’s totally understandable to get upset over negative reviews, it’s important that you don’t forget to answer them. In fact, responding is very beneficial and can make or break your business. It shows empathy and understanding if you offer apologies as well as solutions for those who had a bad experience with your company. Additionally, research suggests that 82% of customers are more likely to use a business if they see how the company responds to complaints– this also helps reduce their skepticism if all the reviews seem too good to be true.
When you respond to reviews, it ultimately lets others know that their feedback is important to you and that they should write their own review. This will help build a foundation of positive reviews over time.
5. Create a Google My Business review link
The next time you communicate with clients via an email marketing campaign, why not include your Google My Business review link? By doing so, you make it easy for them to write a review without having to be asked directly. Also, your email signature could say something like: We love helping pets and their owners! If we’ve helped your pet, please leave us a positive review so that we can help others.
6. Other review platforms also are important
Your Google reviews are vital but don’t forget about other influential consumer review networks like Facebook and Yelp. Another great way to show appreciation for those who write reviews for your business is by sharing them on social media. This is also a way to increase business traffic.
7. The key to keeping your clients is making them happy.
The best way to get good reviews is to simply provide excellent service. Of course, you can always ask your clients for a review, but if you’re doing things right, the five-star ratings should come naturally!
9. Use QR Codes
QR codes are a fantastic marketing tool for veterinarians! Your clients can easily leave reviews by scanning a QR code that links them directly to your chosen platform.
The VET Marketing Agency can provide your animal hospital with fully managed customer review services that include increasing your flow of customer reviews and technology solutions for your own veterinary website.
About the VET Marketing Agency (VMA)
The VET Marketing Agency (VMA) is a premier provider of digital marketing and social media engagement services to the veterinary animal hospital industry. We offer veterinarians ways to grow their businesses through strategic consultation and a suite of a-la-carte digital marketing services.
VMA services include veterinary custom website design, veterinary search engine optimization, veterinary paid advertising programs, social media marketing, engagement services for animal hospitals, and 24/7 reputation management services for veterinarians.
We are a family-owned business located in New Jersey, and unlike our competitors, we exclusively support the veterinary industry. The VMA is a certified Google Partner and a member of the Veterinary Hospital Managers Association (VHMA), and also a member of the Independent Veterinary Practitioners Association (IVPA).