Google vs. Yelp Reviews: Which One Should Healthcare Businesses Focus On?

When choosing a healthcare provider, patients have made online reviews an integral part of their decision-making process. Search Engine Land reports that 72% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. So, the quest for improved online reputation among healthcare providers comes with the choice of which review sites they should focus on, especially since there is tough competition between Google and Yelp reviews.

With 66% of patients seeking out Google reviews when choosing a new healthcare provider, Google is the most frequented site for online reviews. Yelp is another popular review site as 35% of patients say they check Yelp when looking for a healthcare provider or practice. So, when getting patient reviews of doctors, it is a battle for an effective online presence with Yelp vs. Google reviews.

Here are some basic tips to help you make a good marketing decision in the Google vs. Yelp reviews battle.

Yelp vs. Google Reviews: Which Is Better and More Reliable?

Even though Yelp has millions of registered users in the U.S, a rivalry began with Google, who has grown considerably over the years and is looking to take over the review space. Here are a few differences between Google and Yelp:

  • Google reviews grew by 83% in 2014, 114% in 2015, and 278% in 2016
  • Yelp contains over 171 million reviews
  • Google reviews have an average rating of 4.3
  • Yelp has an average rating of 3.65
  • Google is trusted by 33% of patients younger than 60 and by 15% older than 60
  • Yelp is trusted by 10% of patients younger than 60 and by 80% older than 60

In general, unmanaged reviews tend to depict a more negative bias since unhappy patients are more vocal about sharing their experiences than happy patients. So although Yelp contains a large number of reviews within their platform, many of those reviews tend to be negative as a result of their policy that prohibits soliciting for reviews. If you pair this negative bias with 75% of patients not choosing healthcare providers with less than a 4-star rating, more focus should be placed on Google reviews because of their well-balanced credibility.

High-Intent Customers Search: Yelp vs. Google Reviews

For many prospective patients, the decision to use a healthcare provider is first decided through an online search. In fact,

When it comes to these two review sites, Yelp ranks healthcare sixth at 8% among the most reviewed business categories in the U.S. Despite this, however, Yelp witnessed nearly half as many visits for patient reviews of doctors compared to Google in 2021. So, if healthcare professionals wish to boost their review ratings, they need to put in significant effort towards building their Yelp and Google reviews.

Yelp or Google Reviews: Which Is Better For You?

A satisfied patient experience is one of the most sought-after goals for healthcare providers, as great patient experiences bring in more positive reviews, and positive reviews bring in more patients. Conversely, a bad patient experience could mean a bad review and ultimately a bad online rating. Therefore, patients' experience with healthcare providers underscores Yelp vs. Google reviews.

Both Google and Yelp reviews have their benefits that healthcare providers can take advantage of. Since a patient’s search for their healthcare needs typically begins on Google, having a strong online Google presence of an average of 4-star ratings and at least 10 recent reviews will be beneficial. Likewise, since Yelp has been in the online review space for over a decade, having a healthy online Yelp presence will also help prospective patients choose you.

Overall, when building your healthcare practice’s online reputation, having an accurate online presence across multiple platforms will help your prospective patients get accurate information about your quality patient care. With both Google and Yelp appearing in the top 3 most trusted online healthcare review sites, putting considerable effort into developing your marketing strategies for both Yelp and Google reviews will be a good start to a healthy online reputation.

Although difficult at first, ensuring you have an online presence across all major review sites is vital to your practice’s success. By first focusing on building your Google and Yelp reviews, you set a strong foundation for what kind of reviews you get down the line as your business grows.

Summary

  • Since 72% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, it’s important for healthcare providers to improve their online reputation.
  • 66% of patients use Google and 35% of patients use Yelp when researching a healthcare provider.
  • 33% of younger patients trust Google whereas 80% of older patients trust Yelp. So, healthcare practices with a younger patient base should focus more on Google reviews while those with an older patient base should focus on Yelp reviews.
  • Since 75% of patients do not choose healthcare providers with less than a 4-star rating, and Yelp tends to have a negative bias, more focus should be placed on Google reviews because of their well-balanced credibility.
  • Since 81% of patients check online reviews before making their final selection and 60% of patients checking at least ten online reviews before deciding which provider to visit, it is best to put significant effort towards building their Yelp and Google reviews.
  • Overall, having an accurate online presence across multiple review site platforms will help patients get accurate information about your quality patient care.

About RepuGen

RepuGen is a healthcare reputation management platform that helps improve your online reputation and acquire and retain patients by proactively managing your online reviews. Through its automated survey process, RepuGen enables you to understand your patients’ sentiments the moment they leave your practice, thus improving patient interaction, expediting service recovery, and building up your online reputation- all at once.

Online Review Management

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Lauren Parr

Lauren Parr is the product marketing manager at RepuGen, a healthcare reputation management software. She is highly involved in all things RepuGen; marketing, sales, product development, etc and truly enjoys every aspect of it.

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