In a previous blog, we introduced the PRIME Review Network. And with help from our Digital Marketing Specialist Matt Reinan, we explained how this tool simplifies the process of collecting online reviews. We thought now would be an ideal time to follow up and dive deeper into the specifics of reviews to help you better understand why customer feedback matters to your business and why responding to it is important.
You already know that online reviews help customers make decisions about where to eat and which products to buy. These reviews go a long way toward building your reputation and influencing potential customers. A recent Invesp infographic indicates that:
- For 88 percent of consumers, an online review is as trusted as a personal recommendation.
- Prior to visiting a business, 9 out of 10 consumers read online reviews.
- Almost three-fourths are more likely to trust a local business that has positive reviews.
Reviews also allow businesses to genuinely connect with customers through engagement, and this interaction helps boost visibility. Google elevates businesses with an increased number of high ratings and engagement on Local Map Pack rankings, which shows the first three businesses at the top of a search page.
“If you’re a small business,” Reinan said, “this can set you apart from the big box stores.”
Additionally, online feedback helps businesses understand what its customers enjoy about the business or experience or things to improve upon.
RESPONDING TO REVIEWS
Every business should strive for positive feedback. But no matter the review, an immediate response tells customers that your business is attentive and that it cares about their experiences.
Businesses that acknowledge and respond to reviews exhibit good customer service practices and garner trust. In fact, a BrightLocal survey showed that 71 percent of consumers are more inclined to rely on a business that responds to its reviews. What’s more, Google’s local search rankings now include review responses. So, do your business a favor with a speedy but insightful reply.
When responding to a review, be sure to have a game plan. Regularly monitor your online reviews and respond in a timely fashion. Then:
- Reply to a positive review by emphasizing the customer’s favorable experience.
- Be understanding when responding to a negative review and suggest solutions to the customer’s concerns.
- Offer thanks to customers for their time and evaluation.
Actively communicating with customers shows that your business is committed to providing quality service and responding to feedback.
GAINING MORE REVIEWS
Perhaps the best way to get more reviews is to consistently deliver first-rate service and quality products. Another great way to get reviews is to ask for them. This is commonly done via text or email and most often after a recent purchase or experience.
Be cordial and straightforward with your request. Point out that customer feedback matters and will help cultivate your business. Make the process simple, follow up as needed, and remember to thank your customers.
“Getting reviews can be tricky,” Reinan said. “You want to make it easy. If the process is complex, people may not take the time to do it.”
REVIEWS MADE SIMPLE
Set up profiles on several platforms and be sure to claim ownership of them. This will make things easier for customers when it comes to leaving feedback. You can also automate review reminders to send to customers, and that’s where the PRIME Review Network comes in.
“The PRIME Review Network can simplify this process and seamlessly help you collect more positive customer reviews,” Reinan noted.
To learn more about the importance of reviews and why customer feedback matters, contact PRIME today. Our experts will walk you through the process. We’ll answer any questions and explain how the PRIME Review Network can help your business flourish.