For families searching for senior living solutions, online reviews are an increasingly critical component of their decision. In fact, a 2017 global survey of Internet users showed that 42% of adult children aged 55 to 64 were significantly influenced by reviews when helping their parents transition to senior living communities.
Online reviews are a huge factor for seniors and their loved ones, from the very beginning of their search for information through the consideration and decision-making stages, and even after their family member has settled into their new residence. When thinking about the elements that influence the purchasing decisions of the seniors and families you serve, remember that the reactions and experiences of other consumers carry significant influence. Online reviews are easily accessible and when strategically managed, they can be a major source of credibility and trust for your brand.
Build Trust with Positive Reviews
In the senior living industry, adult children are looking to other families who have had direct experience with a senior living community for opinions and reliable information beyond what a community itself provides. In our article The Customer Journey is Critical to Your Marketing Strategy, we mentioned that consumers are looking at online reviews as a source of information in the early stages of their search, and it’s especially crucial to have a strategy to generate positive reviews, respond to possible negative reviews and manage your reputation online.
According to SmartBizTrends, consumer reviews are trusted nearly 12 times more than descriptions that come from the business themselves.
The main benefit for senior living communities is that reviews enhance feelings of trust. SmartBizTrends reports that 72% of consumers say positive reviews make them trust a local business more and 90% percent say that they read less than 10 reviews before forming an opinion about a business. In this case, positive reviews are even more critical to your community as you have a small window to make a good first impression on seniors and their families.
Forbes’ article Online Reputation Statics That Every Business Needs to Know, reports that 90% of consumers read online reviews before visiting a business while 84% of people trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation.
Keep this in mind when judging whether reviews are valuable to your online presence – they can truly have an impact on whether a family looks twice at your listing.
Amplify Your Brand with Recent Reviews
Reviews build trust, but they’re also important in your search engine ranking. From an online ranking perspective, SmartBizTrends states that reviews contribute to 10% of the Google SERP ranking and for every star a business gets, there is an expected 5-9% increase in business revenue. Google notes that business listings that had at least a 3+ star review captured 41 out of 47 clicks.
While the statistics on the value of online reviews speak for themselves, connecting online users with the stories of satisfied residents and their families can be challenging, particularly if you do not already have a testimonial or review section on your website. SeniorAdvisor.com, the largest senior living ratings and reviews site, was created to address this challenge by providing a centralized location to assist both families and partners in bridging this gap.
SeniorAdvisor.com Harnesses the Power of Reviews
SeniorAdvisor.com allows families to learn about senior living and long-term care options through the experience of other caregivers. The site offers first-hand information to seniors and families who are making decisions regarding senior living housing, care and services.
SeniorAdvisor.com provides a simple, personalized online experience that presents options tailored to the needs of the caregiver. This experience ensures each family has the proper information they need to make a confident, informed decision.
Since its launch in early 2013, SeniorAdvisor.com has become the leading review site for families researching senior care, connecting them with high quality senior living communities and services, including access to A Place for Mom’s local Senior Living Advisors whenever they need additional support, advice and guidance.
Currently, there are over 200,000 authentic consumer reviews from like-minded caregivers available on SeniorAdvisor.com for all types of senior and home care communities. Some of these reviews are also shown on A Place for Mom. Considering the importance that ratings and reviews hold, at A Place for Mom we encourage our partners to collect as many quality reviews as possible, and engage with families online.
Our team has found that communities who have reviews including recent reviews, and who are engaged with their online reviews have a distinct advantage over their competitors, including improved conversion rates (encouraging families to tour and choose your community) and increased rankings (click thru rates, increased traffic and more leads with online traffic).
With the ability to get feedback and participate in conversations with prospective families there is even higher potential for positive ratings and reviews, and we encourage this for all our customers. Those communities who do not have ratings or have incomplete information on SeniorAdvisor.com greatly reduce the overall impression of their community and put themselves at a severe disadvantage with consumers who may otherwise consider them when conducting research.
Best Practices for Managing and Responding to Reviews
So, how can you increase your positive online reviews and get your community noticed?
Check out our article on Best Practices for Collecting and Managing Senior Living Reviews for the different ways to collect, monitor, respond to, and manage reviews from seniors and their loved ones to maintain your brand’s reputation using positivity and transparency.
Ultimately, when it comes to senior living reviews, there’s no time like now to get started. Harnessing the power of industry ratings and reviews will result in the overall improvement of your community and your brand.