Customer satisfaction ratings and reviews placed nearly 900 communities and care services of the over 100,000 tracked by online resource SeniorAdvisor.com on the third-party review site’s “best of” senior living 2015 list.
Senior living communities spanning assisted living, Alzheimer’s care, independent living, low-income senior housing and skilled nursing must have received a 4.5-star rating out of five stars from residents and their families and have also procured a minimum number of reviews to receive their winning status. The second annual “best of” awards also included in-home care providers, who were not eligible previously.
The site’s five-star rating scale system covers five categories: care, cleanliness, activities, value and friendliness.
The awards aim to highlight those businesses who are committed to “providing exceptional care for senior adults and delivering excellent customer service to their caregivers and loved ones,” says Eric Seifert, president of SeniorAdvisor.com.
The ratings are compiled by state.
At 4.5%, 4.1%, and 3.3% respectively, Atlanta assisted living, Chicago assisted living, and Dallas assisted living providers represent the top three U.S. cities with the most winners, data show. California, Texas, and Florida represent the top three states.
The minimum number of reviews needed to qualify winning communities was doubled from last year, the company says.
Currently, the site has more than 63,079 reviews.
“We haven’t seen patterns that suggest that we’re likely to have winners in one category versus others,” Seifert says.
Last year, the third-party review site named more than 500 winning communities.
An increase in residents and their families turning to review sites, as well as SeniorAdvisor.com’s growth (the company is in it’s second full year of business), contribute to the increase in award recipients this year, Seifert says.
“Traffic this year compared to last year is over 600%,” he says, noting that much of that stems from the company being relatively new. SeniorAdvisor.com was launched by senior living referral site A Place for Mom in March 2013.
While negative reviews didn’t position communities to be recognized as the site’s 2015 winners, having a negative review is better than no review at all, according to a joint study by SeniorAdvisor.com and A Place For Mom conducted earlier this year.
On average, communities with any rating at all had higher move rates than those without, suggesting that consumers have more confidence in communities with reviews, Seifert says.
The study also found that consumers are over 100% more likely to move into senior communities with a 5-star rating than those that have no ratings or reviews.
“We encourage communities to respond and engage to online reviews,” he says. “Even if the review is on the negative side, it’s usually best to acknowledge the consumer had a bad experience and offer a thoughtful fix. Encourage [the review poster] to reach out to the community manager. Consumers want to see that providers will listen to their problem — they’re looking for quality and an empathetic ear.”
See a list of this year’s winners here.
Written by Cassandra Dowell