With the immense amount of competition in search engines, online reputation management is one of the best approaches you can take to promote your business, beyond providing an excellent product and exceptional service. Your online reputation can mean the difference between consumers choosing your company or going to your competitor instead. If you haven’t paid much attention to your reviews on Google, or any other search engine, this is the perfect time to start.
It’s important to work to develop and maintain a positive online reputation consistently. Don’t wait until someone else writes a negative review to start working on damage control. Make sure you are actively checking your reviews to show your consumers that are engaged and care about what they have to say. By staying consistent with your online management, you can build trust, enhance your public image, improve customer retention, and increase sales revenue. It’s essential to implement a strategy for continually attaining positive reviews. What other consumers say about your company is critical to your success as a business because people are looking for online reviews.
Why are online reviews important?
Online reviews give your customers an idea of who you are, what you provide, and most importantly, your reputation. Below are a few statistics that illustrate how much impact reviews have on your business’ credibility. According to a local consumer survey the following information was noted about consumer review behavior:
- 97% of consumers looked online for local businesses in 2017
- 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations
- Positive reviews make 73% of consumers believe a local business more
- 68% of consumers left a local business review when asked
How to get more positive reviews:
1. Ask your customers for reviews
People love giving their feedback, so why not have them do it for your reviews. It seems like the obvious choice, but many businesses don’t take advantage of this option. Ask your consumers to submit a review on your product or service. Make it easy for them and invite them to provide feedback about their favorite product or service. Most people will provide feedback if you ask them. You can make it easier for your consumers by giving them a direct link to the review site. Moreover, educate your consumers on why you are asking for a review. Remind them that without their feedback on their phenomenal experience, other potential customers may not be able to look to an online source for more information about your company.
It’s vital to send review requests when it makes the most sense for your business. It depends on the situation but, you can send your customers thank you emails or letters, and then go from there to ask for feedback. These efforts will build your review volume and improve your search rankings on search engines.
2. Exhibit great reviews
Another way to increase your online reviews is to display them on your website and other platforms. Displaying positive reviews on your website not only boosts your online reputation, but it highlights people who have left reviews and gives others an incentive to do the same. Highlighting your positive reviews can convince potential customers that your business has high-quality products or services. You can post positive feedback on your website when you have received a great review to show incoming traffic that your business is trustworthy. Another helpful tip would be to consider a review widget or direct feedback option on your website’s home page. You can utilize review screenshots in your marketing materials, including brochures, newsletters, and videos. Display your consumer reviews so that your audience learns from satisfied clients across multiple social media platforms.
3. Offer an incentive to give reviews
There will be some consumers who are more than happy to provide a review without any encouragement. For those who need an incentive, use that to your advantage. If appropriate for your business, you can offer a small token of appreciation for their time, such as a coupon or discount for submitting a review. Communicate to your consumers that you will reward content buyers for the time they invest in providing feedback about their experience. Offering incentive will simultaneously help build a strong relationship between your business and the customers and enhancing your online presence.
4. Respond to negative reviews
Sincerely replying to an unfavorable review will show consumers that you care. If the customer had a poor experience, thank them for their feedback, apologize with sincerity, and then strive to find a solution. After turning that negative review into a positive one, ask permission to post the fact that the issue was resolved. The critical goal is to take a negative review and promptly turn it into a positive one.
5. Display reviews & recommendations on social media channels
Keep your social media presence active on popular platforms such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and YouTube. On your social media accounts, make sure to create diverse content with reviews, informative posts, and videos. A stellar review on social media can result in more customers. An engaging social media feed will keep you top of customers’ minds and amplify a positive brand reputation.