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Fake Customer Reviews: How They Can Destroy Your Dental Practice and What You Can Do Instead

Reviews are vital for anyone who runs a business, dental practices included. A solid testimonial can encourage people to visit your dental practice—and a negative review can chase them away.

Dental Intelligence

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April 11, 2023

Getting positive reviews isn’t always easy. Sometimes you just can’t get people to leave a comment. Other times, you’re getting reviews, but they focus on the negative. Either can be detrimental, so some people may try a different method: buying fake customer reviews.

Buying fake online reviews may seem good in theory, but they can cause all sorts of problems. At Dental Intelligence, we’re here to help you understand how fake reviews can hurt your dental practice—and give you strategies to build reviews organically.

What is a Fake Review?

As the name implies, this is where a fake customer leaves a review of a product or service. A company will pay the person in question to write a positive review. In theory, this positive review will drown out negative reviews and help your site rank better on search engines.

How Fake Online Reviews Hurt You

Fake customer reviews might be relatively effective in the short term, but they can cause a lot of damage in the long run1. It’s relatively easy for clients to pinpoint red flags, like a fake profile picture or template text. If and when someone discovers them, you could find yourself dealing with far worse consequences than just a lack of reviews.

They Destroy Credibility

Think about this from the perspective of a client. You want to make sure that you can trust the dental practice that you’re visiting. You do as much research as you can and find one that has a lot of positive reviews. You think that you’ve found the right place, so you book an appointment.

Then you discover that those reviews were fake.

If the practice’s owners are buying fake reviews to boost their ratings, then how good are their services really? How do you know what the review said was accurate? And how can you trust them to give you good service?

Fake customer reviews can potentially drive clients away — meaning you’ll be worse off than you were to begin with.

They’re Illegal

Of course, losing clients isn’t the only problem with fake reviews; they’re also illegal.

Fake reviews are incredibly misleading; because the people writing them haven’t gotten service from you, these reviews aren’t always going to present factual information. This can result in clients visiting your clinic for fraudulent reasons. According to the FTC, this is illegal, and it can net you thousands of dollars in fines.

They’ll Get Deleted Anyways

You’ve spent tons of money on fake customer reviews. You’re hoping that they’ll draw in clients, but when you look, the reviews have disappeared.

This isn’t necessarily because the person you paid took advantage of you. It could very likely be because the review site figured out the reviews were fake.

Potential clients aren’t the only ones who notice red flags. If a review site detects fake reviews, then they’ll delete them — which means you could spend an excessive amount of money for no results at all.

What Can You Do Instead?

Fake customer reviews are obviously a poor choice. However, knowing that won’t actually solve your problems. You still need ways to try and build positive reviews.

Thankfully, you can do so organically.

One of the best ways to start building more reviews is to interact with people on social media. Respond to comments and reviews, acknowledge and address concerns, and otherwise try to build a community.

Sending out messages to encourage reviews can also be incredibly beneficial. Sometimes, people just need a little prodding; with some encouragement, your clients may be more than willing to provide you with reviews.

Finally, have a strong website and solid dental practice. People are always more willing to provide reviews if the service is outstanding — and if the website is easy to navigate.

Get more Online Reviews with Dental Intelligence! We offer services to help you obtain online reviews organically. We can create an automated review system, help you focus on certain review sites, and much more. Our goal is to help you get positive reviews the right way.

Build Online Reviews Organically

Fake customer reviews can be incredibly detrimental to your practice. At Dental Intelligence, we can help you receive real online reviews. Schedule a demo today to see how we can help you intelligently shape the future of your practice.

Resources

1 Harvard Business Review

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