Patient Reviews Matter Online

By   |  November 20, 2014

According to a 2013 study conducted by Software Advice, more and more patients are choosing physicians based off of online reviews. Recently, the same company conducted a similar study to see how patients' use of online reviews has changed throughout 2014. Overall, the study found that online reviews of physicians are increasingly valuable to patients. To follow are some key takeaways from the study.

Patients Are Using Online Reviews More Than Ever.

Software Advice found that the use of online reviews increased by 68 percent this year, against 2013 findings of just 25 percent. Of patients polled in 2014, 42 percent were inclined to use online reviews when determining the credibility of a physician. This dramatic increase illustrates the importance of online marketing for medical practices. It's increasingly important for physicians to establish a presence online.

Good Reviews Encourage Out-of-Pocket Spending.

The study revealed that nearly half of survey participants were inclined to choose an out-of-network physician based on good online reviews. This statistic shows that patients are more willing to spend out-of-pocket for perceived better care and physicians with better online ratings are inclined to increase their profits. Of those surveyed, 49 percent said they would not go to an out-of-network physician based on positive online reviews, while 44 percent said that they would, showing that online reviews are nearly as important as being in-network for physicians.

Positive Ratings on Yelp are the Most Important.

Software Advice's survey showed respondents indicated that Yelp was the most used and trusted review site. Other popular and trusted review sites are Healthgrades and RateMDs. Of those polled, the most popular sites for trusted online reviews broke down as follows:

Physicians who haven't searched for their own online reviews can follow any of the above links to look up their names or medical practices' names to gain information about their own web presence.

More Patients Use Online Reviews.

Patients use online reviews for different reasons. The study found that 61 percent reference online reviews before selecting a doctor, 20 percent use online reviews to evaluate their current physician and 19 percent are inclined to write their own review of a physician. These figures illustrate a common theme patients value the level of care they receive.

Not Sure How to Establish an Online Presence? Start With Dr. Leonardo.

Dr. Leonardo is a website builder designed for medical practices. In three easy steps, you can have your medical practice's website live on the Web. For more information on where to start, contact us.