Should Your Therapy Site Have Business Reviews?

By Allison Puryear, LCSW, CEDS on May 26, 2021

Building your website can feel overwhelming. There's a lot to consider: copy, pictures, your About Me page, search engine optimization (SEO), financial language, contact forms..., the list goes on. One not-so-common question I get (but should be discussed when practice websites come up) is should I put client reviews or testimonials on my site for SEO?

I'm going to go with a definite no on this one. Here's why:

From state to state and discipline to discipline, the vast majority of our ethics boards state that we cannot ask for reviews, testimonials, or ratings from clients. Because of this, I would recommend not having patient or client testimonials on your website, even if you took them from an unsolicited Google Business review.

Yes, client reviews can impact SEO (also known as being on the first page of Google), but they aren't the deciding factor for successful SEO. You can have zero reviews and still get on the first page of Google with no problem. Plus, SEO isn't absolutely necessary to have a full practice. It's one useful tool among valuable others in your toolbox, and you only need to utilize a few of them.

I wouldn't worry about other counseling businesses having great reviews. You'll be fine if: you're following marketing best practices, your website is speaking to your ideal clients, you're building good and solid relationships with colleagues and in your community, and you are utilizing up to three other marketing strategies. For anyone worried about the competition, please know that there are plenty of clients to go around. Tightening up your marketing will get you where you want to be.

If you're looking into boosting your SEO, consider blogging or vlogging. Regularly publishing relevant content that speaks to your ideal client can increase your SEO and help people find you. Blogging and vlogging can significantly help you address the pain points unique to your ideal client, as well as give them a sense of who you are and what it's like to work with you. Creating regularly released content (e.g. releasing a new blog every other week, new vlog on the 15th of every month, etc...) is an excellent double-whammy of exposure that eliminates the business review or client testimonial conundrum.

* The content of this post is intended to serve as general advice and information. It is not to be taken as legal advice and may not account for all rules and regulations in every jurisdiction. For legal advice, please contact an attorney.

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