A positive online reputation is a very powerful marketing tool for any business. Good online customer reviews influence new customers to buy from you, given that around 90% of consumers read online reviews when they do their research on products or services. Shoppers made it a part of their buying process and trust reviews as much as personal recommendations.
Moreover, 72% of consumers will take action only after reading a positive review, so star ratings really make a difference.
What can online reviews do for your business?
They help rank your business higher on search engines
Build trust with potential customers
Improve landing page conversions
Improve click-through rates
A powerful tool in the shopping experience
Help develop a closer relationship with customers (handling concerns, answering questions, etc.)
They help the business owner know more about the shoppers’ tastes and preferences
Your existing customers are the best marketers you can have. Reputation marketing is highly effective, you just need to know where to start and how to use it to your advantage.
Statistics show that customers are happy to provide feedback and leave reviews, so don’t be afraid to ask for them. You can include this in your follow-up sales process or after the customer purchases from you.
Here are some useful tips on how to get good reviews:
- Offer incentives in exchange for reviews – discounts, coupon codes, gift cards, etc.
- Start a conversation to find out more about the customer experience, if the response is positive, ask for a review.
- Ask at the right time – don’t rush, but don’t be too late when asking for a review. Try to ask for it after a positive experience for your customers, for example after they repurchase a product, when they tag your brand on social media or when they refer a new customer. Using surveys is also a great way to get feedback from your customers.
- Optimize your content to allow customers to leave reviews on your website, blog, social media and emails. For example, add badges on your website to direct your shoppers on Yelp or Facebook.
- Share existing positive reviews on social media and other channels.
- Respond to every review, regardless if it’s a positive or a negative one. Thank your customers for positive reviews, but don’t neglect the negative ones. Always take the time to respond in a thoughtful, polite manner to a negative review. It can be a source of great improvement to your company.
- Guide your customers to the right place to leave a review. If you want them to provide a review on Facebook, send them the request on Facebook Messenger. If you email them with this request, add a link where they can easily go and write a review. Make it easy for them.
- Use multiple platforms for your reviews – Google, Facebook, Yelp, Amazon, Better Business Bureau.
Not all the customer reviews you’ll get will be positive ones and that’s a reality. However, you can use negative reviews to improve your internal processes, to instruct or coach your employees more, or simply notice an issue which you couldn’t have picked up on. You need to be prepared on how to deal with them.
How to deal with negative customer reviews
- Respond promptly
- Admit your mistakes if that’s the case
- Sound like a person when you respond
- Show empathy
- Ask questions to find out the source of the problem
- Highlight your strengths
- Ask for time to resolve the problem
- Correct inaccuracies
- Take it offline if needed (call your customer)
- Offer compensation (free shipping, discounts, free products, coupons, gift cards)
- Fix internal processes if needed to avoid future complaints.
Reviews have a positive impact on SEO, they build up trust, credibility and online reputation. The benefits of having reviews are undeniable and they are also a great way to differentiate your business from your competitors.
Need more information about how to improve your online shop? Talk to our experts – contact us!