WHY ONLINE REVIEWS SHOULD BE A PART OF YOUR BUSINESS STRATEGY
Looking for the best pizza joint? There’s an app for that. Did you forget something on your shopping list and need it tonight? There’s an app for that. How about a last-minute vacation stay? There’s an app for that. Having easy access to the web has changed the way people shop for almost everything these days. With the internet readily available, it’s rare for consumers to make a purchase decision without reading several online reviews. 90% of consumers said that they have read online reviews before visiting a business. (www.invespcro.com)
Yelp users have contributed over 214 million online reviews of local businesses in 2020 (www.reviewtrackers.com), making it the first place shoppers go to find businesses nearby. Having a positive online presence on sites such as Yelp, Google My Business, FourSquare and Trip advisor should become a key part in branding your company and here is why:
1. Influencers Drive Purchases
People are more likely to purchase a product if others around them told them too, even if they are complete strangers. Today, influencers are the biggest source of online reviews and have a clear impact on sales. Their feedback creates a trust that encourages others to visit your business. Think of it as word-of-mouth but in today’s digital era. Want to know more about influencers?
2. Reviews Make You More Visible
Most shoppers will go to Google when deciding on what to buy or where to visit, and having positive online reviews help rank you higher in those search engine results. When you’re ranked higher, people will see your website sooner and lead to more exposure. Want to be ranked higher on Google? Check out our tips and how we can help!
3. You Look Trustworthy
The more positive reviews your brand has the more you can build trust and credibility. Most shoppers will distrust a business that has an average rating below 4 stars. Just remember, negative reviews can be good for you. Having a perfect score makes consumers suspicious and gives them the impression that the reviews are too good to be true. A few bad reviews won’t derail your average score if you have mostly positive reviews coming in. By simply responding to a negative review, you can restore that trust and improve the customer’s experience.
4. Reviews Create Customer Engagement
One of the biggest mistakes a business can make is to not actively encourage customers to leave reviews. Most shoppers will leave an online review if given the opportunity. Make sure to make it easy for them. You can share a customer experience on social media, create a feedback button on your website, offer a discount through a loyalty program, or send an email after an online purchase. Customers love to rave about their great experiences, you just have to provide the platform.
Online reviews play a significant role in shaping your business and should be a part of everyone’s business strategy. They develop your brand, attract new customers, and drive more revenue. If you own a small business, it’s time to embrace those online review sites and use them to your advantage.