What The Heck Is Nextdoor, And Do You Need It?

Author: Caitlin DeWilde, DVM


Let’s take a who/what/when/where/why approach to Nextdoor, an online reputation site that is showing some great hyperlocal reputation building for many practices.


Who It’s For:

Individuals (AKA “Neighbors”) can claim personal accounts and are verified to ensure they are real people who live in the neighborhood. Local businesses can claim a free Business Page and share basic contact information, allow for private messaging and also earn recommendations. Businesses can also earn a “Neighborhood Favorite” digital badge and signage after an annual voting period.


What Is Does

Replacing the traditional “lean-over-the-fence-and-ask-your-neighbor” recommendation model, this online platform (app and website) boosts well over 55 million reviews and is established in over 295,000 neighborhoods. In addition to business recommendations, neighbors converse about everything from current events, high school football scores, their next garage sale event and receive community updates from local officials.


When You Should Care:

If you’re noticing that:

  • Clients are telling you/writing on their client forms that they “found you” on Nextdoor.

  • This is how I found out about it four years ago, plus my front desk team knew about the Pet Directory feature when helping someone who brought in a lost pet to scan for a microchip!

  • Other local businesses near you are promoting it or displaying the “Nextdoor” stickers.


Where:

If you’re using it as an individual, check out the Nextdoor app or Nextdoor.com. If you’re ready to set up your free business listing as a practice, visit business.nextdoor.com.


Why:

Because Nextdoor requires address verification and therefore represents a truly “hyperlocal” audience, the ability for veterinary practices to connect with pet owners is much more refined than with other platforms.


Nextdoor claims 90% of consumers want to do business within 15 minutes of their home, so it makes sense for practices to be represented to pet owners in that radius with both free and paid opportunities.


Many veterinary practices may see an upward trend in the number of new client referrals from the platform, particularly those with larger and/or urban neighborhoods.

By claiming a Business Page, veterinary practices have the opportunity to present the best information about their business, improve accessibility, and gain the ability to be notified when a neighbor has recommended them. In addition, pet owners can directly message businesses.


Businesses do not have the ability to view local conversations, and can only see information when they have been recommended. However, Nextdoor’s Local Deals give practices the ability to reach neighbors up to a 10 mile radius from their business with paid offerings. These deals, priced based on duration and radius, can help extend awareness in targeted neighborhoods.


Five Fast Tips for Making It Work For Your Practice

  1. Spend 30 minutes setting it up (or REsetting it up) to include info and photos. If you do it right the first time and enable notifications, you can put your best face forward and not have to worry about it in the future.

  2. Share your business profile link on your social media pages– ask your followers if they’re on Nextdoor and let them know you are too! You’ll net a few recommendations for sure this way.

  3. Consider adding Nextdoor as a checkbox for referral source on new client registration forms to both further quantify the reach of your Nextdoor Business Profile and online reputation, but to also clue in your clients to your presence there.

  4. For practices who have earned a “Neighborhood Favorite” rating, displaying the accompanying decal and any signage may further spread awareness

  5. After you’ve earned a few reviews, ask your webmaster to include the icon on your website if you have other review sites listed on your testimonials page


Ready to take it to the next level? Check out our course including step-by-step profile tutorials, graphic templates and more.


Best of luck in the Nextdoor neighborhood!

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