Google Reviews

In today’s day and age, most consumers try to determine the reputation of local business, including eye care practitioners, by consulting and reading online reviews.  Google links your clients and prospects with nearby businesses, local restaurants and services and even helps them plan itineraries and events. When consumers want to connect with local health care providers, it’s not much different. Google is usually the logical first choice.

When clients want to plug into other users’ experiences, Google Reviews gives insight on how a practice might compare to another. As such, Google Reviews is, without a doubt, one of the biggest contributors in helping the average web user make a quick decision on which health care providers, including optical stores and optometric services, best suite their needs.

Google Reviews also allows users to write reviews on a business’s Google listing. Since these reviews are posted publicly, potential customers rely heavily on the experiences others have had and are willing to share.

Here are 6 key reasons why, as a practice owner, you will need to set up Google Reviews to boost your overall growth and reputation.

1. Accessibility
You’ve probably been in a situation where a quick search on Google and a glance at the Reviews section gave weight to your decision-making process. There have been times where I have decided against going to a nearby restaurant because the reviews on Google were mixed or unfavourable. Getting to this conclusion with just a quick search on my phone has also proven to be handy.  ECPs are no exception to these entrenched behaviours.

2. Getting your clients to trust you
Last year, my cat fell ill and required an emergency visit to a veterinary clinic. His usual vet was away on holiday and he required immediate treatment. My cat is a pretty big deal, so I knew it was imperative that I find a reliable service that would be worth the cost and provide him with top-notch care. A survey of the Google Reviews left on each of my city’s vet clinic pages led me to a well-reviewed veterinarian that got him the treatment he needed (and made his owner pretty happy, too).

According to BrightLocal’s Local Consumer Review Survey, 86 percent of customers check local reviews before consulting a local business. Furthermore, consumers are said to read an average of 10 online reviews before they feel like they are able to trust a business.

3. Negative feedback helps you grow
Nobody likes negative feedback when it first comes in, but it can be just as important as your positive reviews. Negative reviews are an extremely useful tool in pinpointing what you can do to make your services and online reputation better. Bad feedback can also help you track the growth of your practice and target opportunities for improvement. Who better to help you do that than your customers? Your customers might highlight the shortcomings that you may not be noticing.

4. Reviews offer another opportunity to connect with your patients
Your patients love to be heard and Google Reviews gives you a chance to thank them personally for their patronage. Since you can reply to a review, you can further showcase your exemplary service by coupling their review with an expression of gratitude. Also, Google Reviews provides the opportunity to address negative feedback. Perhaps, by replying to a negative comment, you’ll have the chance to turn a patient’s negative experience around and gain back their loyalty.

5. There are SEO benefits, too
Google Reviews also helps your practice rank higher in search results. The higher your review quantity, the higher the likelihood is that your business will land on the front page of local search results. Positive reviews will, of course, trigger more clicks through to your site and, in turn, increase your traffic. Depending on your content and calls to action, this can help you get a higher conversion rate. This also heightens your potential for ROI and increased revenue.

In all, setting up Google Reviews for your business is a quick, effective and efficient method that is completely cost-free. You will develop brand trust with your customers and leverage your ranking in Google search results.

Should you need any further help with understanding Google Reviews or building your web strategy, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us!

is the VP, client relations for OneLocal, based in Toronto.

As marketing budgets decrease for clinic owners, the opportunity to acquire new customers online is increasing, as that is where all potential clients are. Ever since the pandemic started, OneLocal has been working closely with clinic owners to recommend a marketing strategy that will not only sustain them through the pandemic but won’t break the bank. Get a free consultation here:


5 / 5. 1

The reality is bad reviews happen. Today’s high-tech world guarantees a seamless outlet for clients to provide their feedback and not every one is going to agree with your approach. That is life. Experts suggest the best thing you can do when faced with the dreaded one-star review is to avoid turning a blind eye, address the complaint and harness the opportunity to make improvements to your business process.

Some may slough off a poor online review and not give it much merit. However, it is a serious matter and can certainly be a risk to any business, even more so in the healthcare industry. We all rely on our peers for advice and, no matter what advertising strategy may be in place, word-of-mouth still reigns.

Take a Deep Breath

And, while the thought of one poor online review tarnishing your well-developed professional reputation may be gut-wrenching, the best thing you can do is put your best foot forward.

But what does that mean exactly? This can be a touchy subject, especially if you are not comfortable online to begin with. Here are a few tips from the experts to guide you through what may be uncharted waters:

Take a moment to digest. What has the customer really said to you? Poor reviews can often feel very personal and the last thing you want to do is rush to reply and respond with emotion. Do your best to understand the situation from the customer’s perspective.

Evaluate the validity of the complaint. Has this issue ever come up before? Could the situation have been avoided? And, is there any action the practice could take to prevent this from reoccurring?

Don’t be defensive. The last thing an unhappy client wants to here are all the reasons why they had they experience they did. Do not try to justify anything.

Be sure to follow through. Whether you pursue connecting with the author of the review privately or respond in an open forum, be sure to follow through with any action items you may suggest.

Focus on addressing the issue. In many cases the customer just wants to feel heard. So, focus on acknowledging what has been said and try to rectify the situation with fairness.

A negative review can certainly be downer but experts say it’s not all bad news. These situations can also provide an immense opportunity to demonstrate your practice’s commitment to client engagement and offer a chance to make business improvements that are directly impacting your clients.

“An important thing to remember when dealing with negative reviews is to be proactive. This is your opportunity to demonstrate that your business is properly run and deals with problems quickly and fairly,” said Matt Earle, president of, a Toronto-based digital public relations company geared towards helping people and businesses improve their online reputation. “Always respond in a highly empathetic way that addresses the substance of the complaint and shows a fair and generous response to their complaint.”

Seize the Opportunity

If you have never had to deal with a negative online review, you should still consider how to best position yourself before it happens. In this scenario, the old adage, ‘the best defense is a good offense,’ rings true.

A good starting point is to gather a few spots clients may be posting about your practice that you can monitor regularly. A simple Google search of your name or company name can pull up local discussion boards or mentions on sites such as,, or Facebook, the Yellow Pages and Google itself also provide the opportunity for user to leave a review about your business.

“We do have a couple of staff members that monitor this at our practice,” said Dr. Ian Beaumont, practicing optometrist at FYidoctors in Brandon, Manitoba. “We just want to be aware of any major deficiencies that people may be posting about us. I don’t mind the online review system. It obviously has limitations just like any system, but it can be used as a self evaluation tool to better yourself.”

Aim to hold an active presence online, whether it may be with a company website, blog or social media posts. Then take it a step further and encourage all of your customers towards providing their feedback online. More often than not, patient reviews are going to be exceedingly positive, but of course the negative ones always seem more prominent. Think about balancing that equation and painting a more accurate picture of your practice by motivating clients to comment, like or provide a review.

Don’t forget, thank everyone who takes the time to provide feedback, no matter the intention. These reviews provide valuable insight from the patients’ point-of-view about what areas of your business are working well and where improvements can be made. All feedback, including that rotten review, has the capacity of improving your practice if handled correctly.



Jennifer Paige Golletz is a freelance writer and journalist based in Toronto, Ontario. She graduated with honours from the print journalism program at Lethbridge College in Alberta and has been actively writing for a number of publications for the past five years.


0 / 5. 0