RateMDs is a popular healthcare-specific online review site that allows patients to review their physicians. The site is free for both physicians and patients to use. It was founded in 2004 by the same person who founded RateMyProfessors.com and RateMyTeachers.com.
Can practices have a listing, or is the site just for physicians? RateMDs is for both physicians and practices (RateMDs calls practices “Facilities”). Practices can link individual physician profiles to the listing for the practice.
Can physicians set up their own profiles? Physicians can set up a profile if they are not already listed. Users can also add physicians to RateMDs to leave a review.
Are patients required to create an account to leave a review? No. Patients have the option to set up an account on RateMDs, but they are not required to do so to leave a review.
Is there a cost for physicians / patients to use this site? No, RateMDs is free to both physicians and patients, but there are paid plans for doctors with additional features.
How the Rating System Works
Ratings on RateMDs are based on a 5-star system. Users can rate physicians in 4 categories: Staff, Punctuality, Helpfulness, and Knowledge. Practices, or “Facilities,” as they are known on the site, also have 4 rating categories: Cleanliness, Facilities, Services, and Value. The overall star rating for each review is an average of the ratings for Helpfulness and Knowledge. Whether rating a physician or a facility, users must also leave a written comment (50 character minimum) elaborating on the reasoning behind their ratings.
The site also includes a “Top 10” list of physicians in each specialty for several cities.
How Physicians Can Use the Site
Physicians are allowed to claim their listings, or add their profile if they are not currently listed. Physicians are not allowed to have their Rate MDs profiles taken down, so once the profile is up, it is there to stay unless the listing is fake or the doctor is deceased. Once physicians claim their RateMDs profiles, they are allowed to post responses to patient reviews. They are also allowed to edit their profiles to add information or make corrections if needed. These features are all available for free on RateMDs.
RateMDs also offers paid plans for doctors. For $179 per month, physicians are allowed to add up to 10 images to their profiles, receive email notifications about new reviews, feature and hide ratings (more on that in the next section), receive and manage appointment requests, and run ads on the site. With the paid plan, physicians can run banner ads on competitors’ pages on RateMDs, have their ads appear on RateMDs top 10 pages, and have competitors’ ads removed from their profile pages. The ads for the $179/month “Promoted” plan include your primary city, primary specialty, and one additional city. For $359/month for the “Promoted Plus” plan, you get all the features of the paid plan, but your ads include 2 additional cities and one additional specialty with the option to purchase more. Your ads also get 3 times the placement of the “Promoted” plans on the RateMDs site.
Handling False Reviews
Reviewers are asked to confirm that their ratings are based on personal experience, but RateMDs does not take any steps to confirm that the reviewer is actually a patient. RateMDs tracks reviewers by device–users are not allowed to post more than one review for the same physician from the same device.
If a physician suspects that a review is false, he or she may flag the review. When a physician flags a review, he or she will be asked to make a case as to why the review should be taken down. RateMDs will reevaluate the flagged review and will take it down if it is found to be false. However, the site does not make any promises, and in their FAQ section, the RateMDs states that reviews are rarely removed, even when doctors threaten to sue.
Physicians who have a paid plan are also allowed to hide up to 3 RateMDs reviews “deemed to be suspicious” and can select a featured rating to show up at the top of the reviews.
Popularity in Search Results
We looked at a few different metrics to determine RateMDs’ popularity in search results. First, we looked at the Alexa Score. The Alexa Score is a ranking of the most popular and highly-visited websites, based on the amount of traffic the site has. In the U.S., RateMDs has an Alexa score of 11,989, meaning it is the 11,989th most popular website in the country.
Next, we looked to Moz, an SEO software service, to determine the root domains linking to RateMDs. This number tells us how many other websites are linking to RateMDs. According to Moz, 9,361 other sites are linking to RateMDs.
Finally, we turned to another SEMRush, another SEO tool, to get an estimate of the monthly organic traffic to the site. According to SEMRush, RateMDs has about 120,000 organic visits per month. This number only includes visitors who found RateMDs organically and does not include visits from paid search and advertising.