Best Review Sites

Which Are the Best Review Sites for Your Medical Practice?

How to determine the best review sites for a practice is one of the most common questions in the world of online medical marketing. You want to cultivate reviews where they are likely to have the most impact, and focusing your effort on those platforms will prove to be the most beneficial to your online reputation.

In this month’s blog post, CEO Ryan Miller will walk through a few simple steps that you can perform to establish a list of websites most likely visited by patients in your market.

Video Transcription

Welcome back again it’s Ryan Miller with Etna Interactive and we’re here today to answer what I think is one of the most common questions we get asked in the area of online reputation which is:

Now the answer for us is really hiding in plain sight.  We can go straight to Google and ask two different questions, two different queries, to help us develop target lists to prioritize for online rating and review cultivation.

Easily build a list of target review sites in two steps.

Now we’re going to search in Google in two different ways:

  • First we’re going to search for your brand name – now this could either be the name of you or your doctor combined with the word reviews, or the name of your center or professional brand in combination with the word reviews.
  • We’re going to do a second query after that going back to Google searching again this time adding the word best before your specialty – so if you’re an Ophthalmologist it might be, best ophthalmologist plus your city, the primary city in which you’re targeted or operating.

Two steps to build your list of target review sites.

Those two queries are going to give us an easy way to identify which of the rating and review sites are seen most often by patients in your market. So let’s do it together and do a little example here.

One of our clients here, Dr. Simeon Wall a plastic surgeon in Shreveport – we searched Dr. Simeon Wall reviews and I love it because he has a fantastic reputation.

Google search results for Dr. Simeon Wall reviews.

Now right away we see the visual impact of the knowledge graph card on the right hand side of your screen.  We see that Google’s own native reviews, well, they’re given special emphasis on this search engine result so of course Google matters.  On the left hand side of the screen we see organic results for sites like Vitals and Healthgrades. If we went down a little bit farther we’d see RateMDS and Yelp are right there, but I want to pause for a second on this page and call your attention to the bottom of that knowledge graph card where Google is aggregating data. They’re taking data in this particular case from RealPatientRatings, from Vitals and from Healthgrades, similar to the three sites you see in the organic results set.

This is Google telling us that it trusts these particular sources, it’s giving them additional visibility on this search engine results page, and for that reason we would definitely want to focus effort and attention there.  So from our first query, our first search in Google, this is what we’re left with:

  • Google
  • Vizium
  • RealPatientRating,
  • Vitals
  • Healthgrades
  • RateMDs
  • Yelp

For those that don’t know, Vizium and RealPatientRatings is a commercial service for practices to gather both feedback and to help cultivate reviews online. It is not an independent rating and reviews site and for that reason I’m not going to spend too much time talking about that one today. But I will search again, and in this particular case I follow that second set of directions we gave you a few slides ago searching for best plastic surgeon Shreveport.

Google search results for best plastic surgeon Shreveport.

Now I get a different result set here. Again, Google is leading with their own information in a local pack or a local knowledge graph, highlighting three practices in the market.  In this case The Wall Center is the top rated practice in the market, balancing between quantity and quality that we see there. But if I zoom out for a second and take a look and see what really is happening on the rest of the organic section of that page we see an interesting new site popping up, and then a few repeats from the previous search result. RateMDs is coming up, as is a new one, Yellowpages.

Google search results for best plastic surgeon Shreveport.

If I list these two things side by side, that specialty search that we just performed, well it gives us a slightly different set of priorities, and what we’re going to do together, we’re going to circle the ones really quickly here. We see Google, we see that Vitals and we see that RateMDs are showing up on both of the two queries.  That means that your patients are going to be exposed to those sites more often than not and they should probably top our list.
Target review sites found in search for the best for a specific practice.

How do you determine where you want reviews?

So let’s bring it all together and summarize where we might focus our top eight for this sample practice, top eight rating and review sites for our effort and attention.  Google tops the list and although it didn’t show up in this query, we generally put Facebook in the number two spot.  Why? Because social proof – reviews that are left on social sites can have special impact when patients are researching and trying to learn more about your business and your practice.

Then we saw that Vitals and RateMDs showed up on both of our queries so they get the number three and four spots, and then we build the rest of the list out with Healthgrades, Yelp, and, all of those sites appearing in queries that are likely to be searched by your patients, and therefore warranting your effort and attention to provide protection for your reputation on those platforms.

You want reviews where they’ll have the greatest impact.

The bottom line, why do we do this particular method? Because we want reviews where they are likely to have the greatest impact, and that impact is going to be the greatest where patients are already finding review content about you and your practice today.

So there it is – where exactly do you want reviews? Well there’s the way you’re going to be able to answer that question yourself.  If you have questions about our recording today you can send me us an email or of course find more information about Etna Interactive on our own website at

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