How Should Your Practice Response to Online Patient Reviews?
Responding to online patient reviews should be a top priority for you as a physician or practice manager. Yes, even the positive reviews. According to statistics, 71% of patients look to online reviews to evaluate healthcare providers before picking a doctor. That means a bad review can easily convince a patient to look elsewhere, while positive reviews can do wonders for bringing in new clientele.
If you’re interested in finding out the best practices for responding to reviews (both negative and positive), then keep reading.
How to Respond to Negative Patient Reviews
It’s any physician’s or private practice manager’s nightmare when a poor review pops up on Google, Facebook, or Yelp. Although it’s impossible to keep every patient happy, responding to their feedback the right way dramatically increases the odds of improving the customer’s experience.
When crafting your response to negative reviews, be sure you’re following Google’s review guidelines and keep these key points in mind:
- Thank them for their feedback. No matter how negative, always thank the patient for taking the time to leave a review. Even if your blood is boiling, pause briefly to calm down. Then, respond professionally.
- Don’t say sorry or make excuses. Avoid making blanket apologies or trying to come up with a reason that explains the mistake. It is particularly important for avoiding lawsuits.
- Try to right the perceived wrong. Even if you disagree with the patient’s perspective, the fact that you’re trying to make them happy is usually more than enough to reverse a poor review. Moreover, it may make you look good to others reading the reviews.
- Offer to move the conversation offline. If the patient would like to discuss the matter further, having them contact your practice privately is a great way to resolve their concerns.
Examples of Online Review Responses
The following is an example of what you might say to a patient who has left a negative review about your practice:
Dear [REVIEWER’S NAME],
Thank you for sharing your feedback with us. Please reach out to us at [PRACTICE’S NUMBER] with any concerns or suggestions. The patient experience is important to us, and we strive to exceed expectations with every visit.
Of course, the situation will vary any time you receive a negative review. However, your practice can use this template as a general guideline for turning a patient’s negative experience into a positive one.
Replying to Positive Reviews
If a patient complimented you at your practice, would you thank them? The same goes for when a patient writes a great review online.
Not only will responding to positive reviews help create buzz around your practice, but it will also help you build loyalty with current patients while attracting new ones.
So, how do you respond to a positive review?
Most importantly, thank the patient and personalize the response by responding to specific points in their review. Below is a great template to follow. Be sure to customize it for each patient and put your own spin on it.
Dear [CUSTOMER NAME],
Thank you for taking the time to leave us such a great review. We’re excited to hear about great experiences at our practice. Ensuring a happy visit is our number one priority. Thanks again for the kind words!
Manage Your Online Reputation and Reviews
The fact of the matter is, whether positive or negative, online reviews influence how people view your business. The best way to improve your online reputation is by taking the time to create thoughtful responses to each review.
Wouldn’t it be amazing if you had a system to get more online reviews automatically? Then be sure to schedule your free Zingit demo today!