If you’re a health practitioner, whether it be a surgeon or a dentist, your reputation likely keeps you up at night. Competition can be stiff with a flooded realm of bigger and better health practitioners. Are you not reaching your goals in terms of clientele, or do you have an operational issue that has been made visible through your reviews? You’re not alone.
A 2013 Pew study revealed that 59% of Americans sought health information online by first browsing through search engines such as Google and Bing. This fact poses a vital resource to our path in uncovering the reason behind your diminishing clientele: What does Google have to say about your reputation? Nowadays, Americans are becoming pickier than ever about who they hire as a health practitioner. If they’re not satisfied with your work, they’ll quickly turn to the internet for the next best practitioner that can solve their health issues. There’s nothing more sensitive and personal than one’s health, leaving most patients on the hunt for only the best in the field—no matter the cost.
You must first consider these three important questions:
Are you, the health professional, easy to find by online search?
Do your web pages and doctors’ profiles describe accurate information?
Do you have good ratings and reviews?
If you answered no to one or more of these questions, then it’s evident that your competitors are capturing your potential patients. Here are tell-tale signs as to why you’re losing business.
1) Potential patients can’t find you online (or offline).
Has your establishment changed its building complex recently without updating its new business location listing on Google? This in itself can cause frustration for new clients that aren’t aware of the change. In fact, a study done by Placable found that 73% of patients who encountered business listing inaccuracies experienced a loss of trust, and 67% experienced a loss of trust if they couldn’t find the intended address due to a wrong listing.
Large health systems find it challenging to keep a hold of the constant flux of data coming from different physician sources. It may be more beneficial to your business’ bottom line if you simply hire staff committed to optimizing physician sites and keeping them up-to-date.
2) You don’t promote ratings and reviews on your website.
If your website doesn’t have physician reviews, then your potential patients are likely to go to other platforms to hear what others have to say about a certain health professional’s practice. It’s easier to effectively respond to reviews (the good and the bad) if your website has the option. Of course, pay attention to reviews that populate on Google or other sites specialized in the matter and make sure that you respond to them!
3) Scheduling appointments is a hassle.
You want to make scheduling an appointment as easy and hassle-free as can be for your customers as this is the initial point-of-contact—the moment where you get to make a lasting impression on the patient that may bloom into loyalty. Use vertically integrated scheduling technologies that allow patients to find a provider, scroll through reviews about that same provider and schedule an appointment all in one place. Don’t bog them down with the barriers of phone calls or accessing another website for scheduling. Think like a patient and make the whole process clean and simple.