In today’s market, it is vital for a business to have a strong online presence to capitalize as many business opportunities as possible. The core foundations of your presence should be a successful website & making sure that the business is actively listed on Google My Business. After doing so, one of the best ways to help boost your presence, outreach and conversion rate is by having positive online reviews. Each review is a powerful tool that can help take your business to the next level! It has been found that 90% of customers will read customer reviews to help aid their decision to purchase a product or request services from a business. These reviews are considered to be just as impactful as a personal recommendation. When you begin to establish higher levels of trust with a customer, a customer will be more likely to choose your services over a competitor who may have lower or less impressive reviews.
Additionally, online reviews can have a huge influence on your Search Engine Optimization. For example, having a large number of positive reviews can help increase your ranking on Google My Business, which makes a business more likely to be displayed or suggested as a local recommendation. Additionally, think of each individual review as a thread that can be traced back to the business. The more positive reviews a business has, the higher the chance the business is able to reach a potential customer, which leads to more web traffic for that business. Keep in mind that a search engine (i.e. Google) constantly adjusts automatically to always return the freshest, highest-quality content in order to Optimize a user’s Search.
Considered as one of the essential methods used to attract new potential customers and grow sales, online reviews have a significant and positive effect on your next potential customer’s purchasing decision. As a result, it’s vital for a business to consistently increase the number of reviews that are received. Two common ways that businesses ask for a review from customers are in person or via email, but how can you consistently capture online reviews from your customers? We’ve provided you with 4 tips to help your business develop a strong strategy to capture great online reviews:
1. Ask at the Right Moment
It’s important to capture reviews, but your main goal must be to capture good reviews about your services. You can capture good reviews by asking your customers at the right moment, which is when they’re content and satisfied. The right moment will consist of when the job is closer to being completed and your customer is excited. Another good time to request a customer review is when you have resolved an issue or problem successfully. After your customer’s successful experience with your business, they will be content and willing to leave a positive review of your business. You can find out about their experiences when you follow up with them about your recent service. Also, at that moment ask if they could leave a review about your business.
Alternatively, take a moment to ask if they would be willing to purchase your services again in the future or if they would refer someone to you. These are other signs that show whether your customer was content and had a positive experience with your services.
2. Make It Easy for Your Customers
You want to ensure when your customers are ready to provide your business with their positive review, they can easily do so. While it may seem like a simple method, a lot of businesses don’t put this into practice. Make sure to make it as easy as possible for your customers to help you stay ahead of the competition. Nobody wants to have to jump through hoops just to leave a review! Taking extra care to review & minimize the number of pages or clicks that customers must take will lead to a huge payoff: an increase in reviews! The following are a couple of ways to make it easier for your customers:
- Send an email as a follow-up after successfully completing a job with a link to your review section.
- Include a dedicated review page on your website, or a link to direct them to your Google My Business reviews.
- Take advantage of your social media presence and upload posts about leaving your business a review that can direct your customers to your review page.
Whether your reviews are on Google My Business or your website, remember to make it easy for customers to not only be able to leave a review, but to be able to access & view reviews.
3. Use Incentives
Whether you’re asking your customers in person or via email about leaving your business a review, consider incentivizing your requests. Offering an incentive can encourage customers to leave a review and will be greatly appreciated. Your incentives can be small offers such as gift cards or a discount on their next service with your business. You can also set a limit and gamify the review process so you’re not going over budget. An example could be that the first 5-10 people to leave a review will receive the determined incentive.
When you find an incentive offer that works for your business and customers, remember to always clearly state the incentive to attract as many respondents as possible.
4. Acknowledge and Respond to Your Reviews
After you’ve received reviews, the next step is to be responsive to all reviews on any online presence your business has. This is important as your next potential customers are not only looking for reviews about your business, but 89% of customers will also be looking at your responses. Actively acknowledging your reviews, whether they are positive or negative, will ensure an increase in customer reviews for your business. Additionally, showing your customers gratitude will boost loyalty and encourage a better relationship between your customers and your business.
Also, use this as an opportunity to connect with any customer that may leave a negative review to resolve any issues, make improvements, and ask what you can do to restore their trust in your business.
In addition to consistently capturing online reviews, here are five recommendations for increasing quantity and quality of online reviews:
- Even the customers that have had a positive experience with your services can be busy, so it’s helpful to ask more than once. Remember to remind your customers by following up with them about leaving a review.
- Thank your customers for their reviews by occasionally highlighting some reviews on social media or your website. This is another form of showing your business is engaged and appreciative of its customers.
- Before asking for a review, start with an open-ended question such as, “Are you ready to purchase our services again?” This allows you to start a conversation and see their level of satisfaction with your services in order to determine if they will be willing to make a positive review.
- When trying to capture reviews, use a common online platform such as Google My Business, Home Adviser, or Facebook as it will be easier for your customers to access.
- Your customers may think it will take a long time to write a review, so remember to let your customers know how long it will take. For example, you can say “It will only take 2 minutes” as a side note.
Whether it’s marketing support, website audits, or design support, Central is the right partner for your business. Our highly experienced Marketing team has decades of experience to help you identify best-practices and implement initiatives that deliver results. We’re ready to help you grow!