Nowadays, customers are increasingly using online reviews for expressing what they feel and think about businesses. They are using local search directories like Google, Yelp and others for reviewing businesses. Positive or good reviews about a business will motivate other buyers to contact or visit it. Negative reviews will discourage the buyers to shop from the business.
Good online reviews about your local business will make the prospective customers believe in your business’s credibility. This will give you an edge over your competitors. So customers will call you about your products or services or visit you. This will translate into more leads, sales and profits. In contrast, bad online reviews are going to put off the customers and affect your sales and profits.
As your local business’s reputation and profitability depends on online reviews, you need to pay utmost attention to them. They will also have a bearing on how high your business ranks in the search engine optimization results.
Many customers consider the number of stars a business has earned in a review for choosing it for shopping. Still others, trust businesses with maximum number of online reviews for shopping products from.
Some Facts Worth Considering About Online Reviews:
- Majority of the consumers admit that a business needs to have an average rating between 3 and 5 stars before they will prefer to use or visit it.
- Yelp is NOT the only place where people look for reviews. Other credible sources are Google, BBB and more industry specific websites such as ZocDoc, HomeAdvisor, RepairPal, etc.
How Businesses can encourage customers to post reviews about them?
To encourage their customers to post reviews about them, local businesses should take a proactive and dedicated approach. They can send an email asking their customers for reviews. The businesses can add links to their Google My Business and Yelp profiles on the sidebar of their website so people can easily find them on these sites and leave a review. They can put a link in their business cards and invoices which leads to a review site. Businesses should make it quite easy for their customers to put reviews.
Apart from encouraging the customers to post reviews about their business, businesses also need to respond to the customers’ opinions. Whether customers talk positively or negatively about their business, they should respond to them appropriately. For any negative comments, your business needs to address the issue in professional manner and recommend the person to contact you to work out the things. For positive comments, thank the customers for encouraging them to leave more reviews in the future.
All this may sound a whole lot of work but is crucial for building online reputation. If you are looking for a simple and cost effective way to manage and boost online reviews, browse our 5-mile Campaigns and look for our "Online Review Booster" campaign. Contact us for more details.