How do you fix negative online doctor reviews? | Online Reputation Management for Doctors | Scoop.it

Many doctors are worried about dealing with negative online reviews about their medical practice. Nobody likes to be told they messed up. Unfortunately due to the internet, this now happens to business owners online instead of in person.

While it saves a confrontation, it does something else much worse: it creates a reputation.

Most people will visit an online review site to complain instead of telling the business directly. This is true for medical professionals as well .

But are they qualified to do so? US News writer Niam Yaraghi feels strongly that the are not. “Patients are neither qualified nor capable of evaluating the quality of the medical services that they receive. How can a patient, with no medical expertise, know that the treatment option that he received was the best available one?”

Yet, the reality is, it still happens on a daily basis.

If all the reviews for your clinic are positive, then it’s smooth sailing.

But what do you do when you get a negative review?

1) Do your best to contact the person directly

Usually the review will contain some sort of identifiable information that can help you deduce who was the writer. If you do have their contact information, it may be worth a quick call or email to ask them how they felt the service was. You don’t need to mention the review, rather simply call them as a courtesy. Even if this is something you don’t normally do, it might help them to vent and may even provide you with some valuable feedback.

2) Respond cordially online

There can be a temptation get into a sparring match via the review site, however no matter what you say to defend yourself, it will only further tarnish the reputation of your clinic. Remember that patients will view the clinic as a business, not an individual person, therefore it is not worth having a sparring match between your company and one individual. It will only make the issue worse.

Instead you might like to respond with a respectful, gracious reply, thanking them for their feedback. You can also let them know if they’d like to contact the office directly you will do everything you can to remedy the situation.

Experts at Reputation.com agree with this “Even if you don’t win back the reviewer, a public response shows potential customers that you care and that you’re paying attention.”

3) Keep focussed on building up your positive reviews

Jenni Williams of ReachLocal says that “while many small businesses fret over receiving a negative review or one they feel is unfair, research from Yelp shows that most people who write reviews actually leave good reviews.”

This is encouraging news, and will help you build a steady stream of positive reviews. The more people you positively impact in your practice, the more they will be inclined to leave positive reviews. Generally it will take 10 positive reviews to counterbalance one negative online doctor review. It visitors to your profile see that the majority of reviews are positive, they are inclined to see negative ones as the exception.

These three simple tips will help negate and hopefully improve the quality of your online reviews from patients. Although the debate still rages whether consumers should be able to review medical services, it is important that you at least acknowledge them and stay vigilant at improving your online ratings.

And of course remember that exceptional care and attention to the patient’s needs will do most of the hard work for you. the more patients who know you as a wonderful doctor, the more your online reputation will grow in value.