April 25, 2018
Google My Business Reviews are one of the most important additions to Google for local businesses in the last few years. Instead of digging through countless websites, asking on Facebook, or talking to friends and family for recommendations, you can now see reviews for local businesses right along side the normal search results Google returns when looking for a local business.
The great thing is for the local business is how easy it is to use these reviews to grow their business and to get started using them. These reviews instill trust in potential customers, but most importantly they drive real results for businesses who use them to their advantage. We’re going to run you through a quick guide to getting these setup and working for your business.
First up, you will need to get your business listed and verified by Google, the process is pretty easy:
Once your listing is verified and ready to go you can get started collecting reviews. Here is an easy six-step process to get you started off on the right foot.
Just ask — Since over 80% of customer are willing to leave a review if you just ask that’s the best way to begin, the only tough part is even if you ask that doesn’t mean people will remember to do it.
Make it easy — If you can eliminate barriers and make it easy on your customers collecting reviews can be simple. The goal is to eliminate the number of steps required for a customer to successfully do this. The best way to do this is to send them a link that lets them quickly land on your Google review’s page, preferably with 5-stars pre-loaded. Do this and your reviews will soar!
Timing is everything — The best time ask for a review is critical, ask too early and customers might be turned off, ask too late and you risk not getting one at all. Believe it or not we find the best time to ask for a review isn’t after the sale, but during the sales process, generally after you’ve had a chance to show them the product or talk about your service when something like paperwork or some kind of downtime naturally occurs in the process. This also gives you two shots at the review, if they don’t leave one now, you can always ask them later after the sale is complete if they need to come back in to pick something up or you deliver a final product.
Show them how and why — When you ask for a review explain why it matters to you, people want to help people when they feel like they can and when they feel well treated. Let them know that they will get a review request, how it will come (text or email) and what kind of feedback you’re looking for. This goes a long way towards increasing the number of reviews you’re going to get.
Use SMS if you can — Everyone already gets too much email already, they’re easy to delete, and it’s hard to standout above the crowd. So if you can use a text message to reach out, it’s quick, direct, and super effective when asking for reviews. In fact text messages have a 99% open rate where as emails only see about an 18% open rate on average, that’s a huge difference!
Use an online review management platform — One of the best ways to increase your Google My Business reviews is to implement a system that does all of the following steps automatically. A good review platform will simplify and streamline the whole process, ensuring everyone gets invited to leave a review at the right time. It will also make it easy to see when people leave reviews and give you the ability to quickly respond.
Google My Business reviews are not only good for customers who are trying to evaluate which provider to choose, but they are also a great way for your business and website to rank better in the organic search results, this is a process called SEO, where Google determines where in the results to show your website.
Any easy way to share your reviews is to embed them on your own web site, here is an article that helps you do exactly that.
Another great way to show off your great reviews is to embed them in your advertising, this could be online or offline advertising, it could be print or digital. Particular customer quotes about great service or a 5-star rating make a great visual on print pieces, postcards, or Facebook ads.