In today’s digital world, online reviews are invaluable for growing your brand. But they provide so much more than just social proof of satisfaction. Let’s explore the many reasons you should be actively collecting more reviews.
Online Reviews: Why You Should Be Collecting More
- Reviews Are Authentic Social Proof. Positive customer reviews offer genuine social proof that your business delivered a good experience. They provide reassurance for potential customers that real people were happy with their purchase. Each online review builds trust and confidence in your offerings.
- Reviews Enhance Your Visibility. Platforms like Google, Yelp and Facebook all factor reviews into local search rankings. The more positive reviews you have, the more prominently your business will appear. This directly impacts your visibility and discovery by new prospective customers.
- Reviews Validate Your Expertise. It’s easy for any company to boast claims of expertise. But words ring hollow without proof. Reviews in your customers’ own voices back up your claims with credible, third-party testimonials. They lend outside validation you really deliver.
- Reviews Heavily Influence Buying Decisions. Studies show over 75% of consumers read reviews before choosing a local business. They want reassurance from others who already purchased your products or services. Positive reviews can be the deciding factor in whether potential customers choose you.
- Reviews Provide Feedback to Improve. While positive reviews are ideal, occasional negative feedback is normal and even helpful. By listening to constructive criticism, you can identify areas needing improvement. Use reviews as insights to evolve your offerings.
- Reviews Build SEO Value. The more reviews you have, the more opportunities there are for keywords and links. This boosts your overall SEO value. Reviews also keep your website content fresh with new reader-generated material.
- Reviews Spread Organically. Satisfied customers are likely to tell friends and family about their positive experience. Quality reviews inspire word-of-mouth referrals, amplifying your reach.
- Review Collection Should Be Ongoing. Online reviews are most authentic and beneficial when continuously collected over time. Make it a regular habit to politely ask customers for reviews after purchases across channels. Adding new ones regularly maximizes impact. [Jump to How to Ask for Reviews from Existing Clients]
- Responding to Reviews Expands Value. Beyond just collecting reviews, publicly responding to them shows customers you listen and care. This builds even more trust and goodwill.
Asking for Reviews from Existing Clients
Now that we’ve covered the many reasons online reviews are so valuable for growing your business, let’s discuss some best practices for collecting reviews from your current customer base:
- Ask at the Right Time: The best time to request a review is immediately after a positive customer interaction or purchase when satisfaction is high. This could be via email or a quick in-person ask.
- Make it Easy: Provide clear instructions on exactly where and how to leave a review. Include links directly to your profiles on relevant platforms to reduce friction.
Be Clear and Concise: Keep your review ask brief and to the point. Be specific that you hope they will share their honest thoughts about their experience.
- Follow Up: If you don’t receive a review within a week after initial request, politely follow up. Sometimes a friendly nudge is all that’s needed.
- Don’t Offer an Incentive for Google Reviews: Google’s policy frowns upon offering incentives like discounts or gifts in exchange for reviews. This could potentially lead to the removal of all reviews and suspending your Google Business Profile. Only offer incentives for online reviews that are added to your website.
- Focus on Quality: Reviews from loyal, long-time customers often carry more weight than brand new clients. Their perspectives are invaluable.
- Remain Patient and Gracious: Even if a customer declines to leave a review, thank them sincerely for at least considering it. Never come across as pushy.
Proactively seeking online reviews from satisfied customers is key to maximizing your online reputation. With a thoughtful, structured approach, you can build an impressive base of credible reviews to grow your business.
In summary, reviews provide visibility, social proof, insights and SEO value to propel your brand forward. They should be an ongoing effort, not a one-time task. With each new positive customer story, you build credibility and new opportunities. Reviews are your best testimonials!
Would you like to learn more about how we can help you optimize your Google Business Profile? Schedule a free call with us today.