How Online Reviews Can Skyrocket Your Business
You’ve built an amazing website and have used search engine optimisation (SEO) strategies to drive people to it. The only problem is, it doesn’t seem to be working as effectively as you thought. What can you do to increase sales and revenue ? There is one sure fire way to boost your revenue or drive more traffic to you. You can give your business a boost by gathering positive online reviews. Learn more about online reviews and how they can help your business.
What Are Online Reviews?
The internet is full of websites that allow customers to leave reviews. People can give you a star rating and write about your business on review sites like:
The reviews are visible to the public, so anyone can see them. Along with reading the reviews, people can quickly see the overall star rating for the business. A quick glance lets them know if the business is worth using or if they should avoid it.
How Do Online Reviews Affect My Business?
88% of consumers look at online reviews before making a purchase. That means if you aren’t gathering reviews, you are failing to close the deal time and time again. Once you start gathering reviews, you should notice an uptick in sales.
On the other end, if you have a ton of negative reviews, you might notice the opposite happens. Those negative reviews can haunt you and derail the business you’ve worked so hard to build. If you get too many negative reviews, it can be difficult to gain the trust of customers. If customers don’t trust you, they won’t buy from you.
Don’t let that scare you, though. Later, you will learn how to get positive reviews for your business.
Benefits of Online Reviews — Why Are Online Reviews Important?
You know that most consumers are influenced by online reviews before making a purchase, but that’s just one of the benefits of gathering reviews.
You’ll also benefit from free advertising. How much money do you spend to get the word out about your company? Wouldn’t it be nice if others did it for you for free? That’s what will happen when you use online reviews. Countless people will mention your business on the review sites. That free press will come in handy when you’re growing your business online.
Online reviews also improve your search engine results. Google knows when your business name is mentioned in a review, even if it’s not on its review site. Those mentions add up and give you a boost in both the local and global search results. The more positive reviews you receive, the higher you’ll climb in the search results.
Also, online reviews allow you to have a closer relationship with your customers. When you invite your customers to review your business, you are allowing them the opportunity to voice their opinions. You will learn what they love about your company, along with areas you can improve. This will allow you to deliver a better product or service to your market. That type of relationship can take your company to the next level.
Reviews also humanise your brand. You also get the chance to respond to the reviews. Reaching out to customers with a response puts a human face on your brand. This creates a sense of authenticity that customers crave. This can help you improve your sales.
How Can I Get Good Reviews to Boost My Business?
You know that positive reviews are important, but just how important are they? 57% of consumers won’t buy from a company that has a rating that falls below four stars. That means you need to collect as many positive reviews as you can.
First, let’s go over what you should not do. Do not offer incentives in exchange for reviews. This is a popular practice, and it goes against the guidelines for most review sites. In fact, Google wiped out all but one review for a Kentucky law firm that engaged in this practice. Instead of giving free gifts for reviews, offer the best service possible so people want to leave positive reviews.
Then, create business profiles on the popular review sites. For instance, claim your listing on Google My Business and create a Facebook page so people can leave reviews there.
Next, ask people for reviews at the right time. Analyse the customer journey and pick out the positive moments. For example, assume someone gets a 50 percent discount on one of your products. That’s a positive moment and a great time to ask for a review. You have done something amazing for the customer, so he or she is more likely to leave you a positive review.
You should also keep an eye on brand mentions. Did someone tag your brand on Facebook, talking about how much they love you? That’s another good time to ask for a review. That person is already a brand advocate. Take that advocacy to the next level with a positive review on your site of choice.
You should also ask for reviews after a customer refers someone to you or when they buy your product or use your service for a second time. Both actions show that the person is pleased with your business. Let them spread the love with online reviews.
There are countless positive encounters through the customer journey. Determine all the positive encounters your customers experience and use them to your advantage.
You also need to use the correct language when you ask for a review. Instead of directly asking them for a review, invite your customers to leave feedback. That makes it sound like you are more interested in their experiences than you are in boosting your online presence.
It’s also very important to respond to any issue or negative feedback you receive. This is your opportunity to right any wrongs a customer has experienced. For example, if you run a restaurant and you receive a negative review from a bad experience a customer. By responding with empathy and an apology, and by offering them a discount or voucher for future visits might turn that experience into a positive one.
It also shows you care for your customers and their experience. Other people reading these reviews will gain comfort by your understanding and dedication to your customers experience.
Finally, make it as easy as possible. Ask for the feedback in email or text messages (if the customer has opted in) and include a link to the review site. The easier it is for people to leave reviews, the more likely they are to do it.
It really is that simple. When you ask people for reviews, many will oblige. Most people don’t mind leaving a review after a positive experience, but they need to be prompted to do so.
Are Online Reviews Trustworthy?
Before you go to all that work, you want to know if online reviews are trustworthy. After all, it doesn’t make sense to grab a bunch of reviews if no one will trust them.
Online reviews are more trustworthy than you might think.78% of consumers put the same amount of trust in online reviews as they do in personal recommendations. That number goes up to 91% for 18- to 34-year-olds. It’s clear that online reviews are trustworthy.
These reviews are even more credible when they come from “verified buyers.” Then, consumers know that the reviewer shopped at your company or used your service. That increases the trustworthiness of the review.
What Is the Best Review Site?
There are tons of amazing review sites out there, and they are not one-size-fits-all. To determine the best review site, you need to consider the type of business you run. Let’s break this down so you can decide which review site to focus on for your business.
Local Businesses — Google My Business
If you have a local business, gather reviews on Google My Business. Once you claim your business listing, you can dress it up any way you like. Include pictures and a description. Customers can leave reviews right there on your listing.
Since Google My Business is a Google product, the search engine showcases businesses and reviews. Generating a lot of positive reviews on this review site will give your company a huge boost.
There is an exception to this rule, though. If you work in the travel industry, you should collect reviews on TripAdvisor.
Travel Industry — TripAdvisor
When you are getting ready to travel, what review site do you normally use? If you’re like most people, you probably had to TripAdvisor to find the best restaurants, hotels, airlines, and entertainment options for your trip.
Along with collecting reviews, you need to make sure your profile is on point. It needs to be high-quality and provide ample information, including descriptions and photos. Also, recent reviews will give your profile a boost.
Online Businesses — Trustpilot
If your site sells and ships products around the world, consider collecting reviews on Trustpilot. The review site is based in Denmark, but it’s quickly growing. Now, you can find reviews from companies located all over the world. Consumers get to write reviews on sellers and products on the site. While there is a free version of the site, consider using the paid version. This allows you to invite people to leave reviews and share them on social media.
Gather Reviews to Power Your Business
Online reviews are the key to generating more sales. If you want to give your company a huge boost, start collecting online reviews immediately. Put a strategy in place to solicit the review and provide the best service possible so those reviews are positive.