09 Jan The Huge Importance of Online Reviews
Think about the trust we put into the opinions of people we have never met before. It seems crazy at times, but in reality, this is an indication of how we do business today and the power of reviews across every major business line and vertical. Statistics show that 92% of people trust an online review as much as a personal recommendation or someone they know.
Bottom line is, reviews matter and reviews are critical as far as generating new business, new revenue, new patients and increased sales. If you aren’t focused in this area it can have a negative impact on your business especially as far as new customer growth and acquisition is concerned.
The other reason reviews matter is they also have a huge impact on SEO and how high your business is ranked in Google search results. These higher rankings can increase the quantity and frequency of people being able to find you when they are searching for a new dentist, doctor, car dealership, etc.
When you look at the organic map pack results that are optimized for mobile, the top three results are largely dictated by the number of reviews that these business have generated.
It is not necessarily that they have done anything special with Google, but just the overall quality and quantity of reviews have had a big impact on their rankings. So instead of being buried by other practices with better reviews, these businesses have taken a proactive approach to take control of their online reviews and are now reaping the benefits of this effort.
In short, reviews are critical to your business because reviews are playing a larger role in building consumer confidence and helping them decide how to spend their time and dollars AND reviews are having a huge impact on local SEO.
The problem of course is…most happy people don’t take time to leave reviews and so you end up in a situation where you are faced with one or two major problems.
The first issue is not having enough reviews to impact search engine rankings and building consumer confidence in your business. For example, if I was a new consumer I would probably have more confidence in businesses with stronger and more frequent reviews when compared to others who have few reviews or customer feedback. Unfortunately, regardless of how great a business is, if there are not many reviews my confidence will decrease.
The second challenge is when you only have a few reviews you run the risk of only getting negative reviews or having a negative review drop your star rankings in a dramatic way. So, in this case, this practice probably sees hundreds of peoples every day and no business is perfect, but if you are not actively collecting positive reviews you are only collecting the few negative reviews.
Think about it, if your current review collection process requires people to go home, sit in front of a computer and log in, find your business page, log in to their Google account, find the Google review pages and then leave a review, very few happy customers will have the needed motivation to do this. A happy customer will not go through that process, but unfortunately, a frustrated client will in order to vent their frustrations. So what ends up happening is you only collect two or three reviews per year and they are largely from frustrated clients.
Quality and Quantity Matter
As mentioned, when you only have 2-3 reviews per month or year, one bad review can change you from a 5 star business to 3 star very quickly so you have to win both the quality and quantity game so your reviews build confidence and promote more people to do business with you. What we found is that your reviews only do one of two things; they are either increasing confidence in future customers or hurting confidence, there is no middle ground, which is why at ArtRageous we want to make sure all of our clients are increasing consumer confidence and foot traffic through strong reviews.
Overall, what other practices are achieving in a year, our clients are achieving triple to quadruple the results in less than a weeks time. They are not doing anything different except leveraging our technology (as a Podium Certified Partner) to finally get their happy customers to leave a review and taking control of this important aspect of their business.
We wouldn’t be a quality MAMA (Marketing, Advertising & Media Agency) if we weren’t constantly looking for ways our clients can leverage the power of online and social reviews to increase their bottom line.