Online reviews can be the key when it comes to making your business fare in the highly-competitive digital marketplace.
Businesses with an online presence are currently in the limelight because of the pandemic, but that also places them under scrutiny. As the number of people that interact with your business increase, the number of unique customer journeys goes up — impacting your brand’s image depending on whether the experience was positive or negative. To top that, online reviews, just like opinions, travel fast in the digital age.
After word-of-mouth marketing, online reviews are the next step to instill trust in your customers.
More and more people are starting to count on online ratings and reviews — around 82% of people read reviews before making a decision related to a local business. Your business needs to gather those shiny reviews and showcase them for your target customers — it’s one of the most important factors to work on when it comes to instilling trust in your current and potential customers. So much so that a good review can increase the chances of your product or service being sold by 270% when compared to a similar product or service with no reviews.
The process isn’t all qualitative, it is backed by quantitative proof t00 – online review signals make up for 15% of the factors Google takes into consideration when it comes to ranking local businesses.
With that being said, online reviews do not come in easily. As reported by GatherUp after conducting a survey recently, around 40% of people never leave reviews after dealing with a local business. Moreover, just 13% actively write reviews. By active, we mean more than 6 times a year.
The survey leads to another great, albeit not positive, insight — at any given time, no more than 17% of your customers are likely to leave a review for your business when asked via email. Plus, potential customers read an average of 10 reviews before they start trusting a business, creating parity between the demand and supply of online reviews.
Now that we know how much online reviews matter and how scarce the good ones are, let’s dive into some practices you can adopt to gather more than just a few.
Ask every customer to review your business: Higher the number of people you ask, higher the number of reviews you get.
Ask customers personally, every time: It all depends on how nicely you ask. The more personalized and thoughtful your request, more likely the customer is to give your business a positive review.
Create and maintain exceptional service standards: Getting the basics right matters the most. The more you delight your customers, the more likely they are to leave reviews that favour your business.
Tackle complaints maturely: Negative reviews point out areas in your business that need improvement — helping you enhance the customers’ experience. Responding to harsh reviews in a timely and mature manner might help you get repeat customers as 45% of customers are likely to revisit a business if it responds to their negative reviews.
Associate reviews with rewards: 24% of all the customers who’re asked for reviews are offered a discount, gift or cash in return. It doesn’t have to be grand — small but genuine tokens of appreciation work just as well. Think along the lines of rewards that ensure positive reviews as well as customer retention, such as single-digit discounts on repeat services.
Reputation management is the third most valuable online marketing service for local businesses. Mystique can help you design a custom plan for your business to improve its online ranking by generating positive reviews.
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