Why Reviews are Great for your Business
So you’ve determined where you’re going on vacation. You can’t wait to have that fruity drink in your hand. And now you’re ready to book your accommodations. Chances are, you’re going to do your due diligence and check out what others are saying about the resorts you’re considering before you make your decision.
There’s no doubt online reviews are powerful. If our country’s economic downturn taught us anything, it’s that yes, we’re still going to spend, BUT we’re going to spend a bit more carefully. And money is not the only consideration; there’s also that other precious resource called our time. We don’t want to waste either when both are being called upon at every turn. Remember that last bad movie you suffered through and the two+ hours of your life you’ll never get back? Bet you wish you would have looked a bit more into the reviews first.
Reviews are great for your business for several reasons. Here are just a few:
If a customer loves their experience at your jewelry store, they are likely to share that experience with their friends, verbally AND through social media channels. Have you ever gotten a new customer via a referral? It can feel wonderful to have your best customers drive business to your door by recommending you to friends and colleagues. Instead of picking up a phone and calling half a dozen people to ask for a recommendation, people are surveying friends on Facebook and looking for reviews by trusted peers. And it’s becoming standard practice. In fact, BrightLocal reports that a whopping 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. And sorry, it doesn’t matter if your business does most, if not all, of its sales offline because you’re still competing for those dollars with your online competition.
Reviews are good for SEO. Reviews help people find your business online, which is great for new customers. For example, Google My Business displays reviews along with search results. Try searching for something right now. See? And businesses with higher ratings draw more clicks. Think about it – if you’re a pretty good cook, you’re more likely to try a recipe with great reviews before you serve it to friends or guests at a party. Like to read? You may be irritated if you devoted hours to reading the book that got lots of hype but ended up being disappointing. You learned your lesson once the hard way, right?
Reviews build trust. Consumers are becoming more skeptical of what a brand says about their product. They need that information to be backed up by a third party. Great reviews can be the deciding factor for a customer to pick you versus a competitor. The two new restaurants you were torn about trying? Bet you picked the one with the best reviews. It’s only human nature.
So what’s a jeweler to do? Ideally, you want reviews to occur naturally, but let’s face it. The reason customers are checking you out online first is because they’re busy — and writing about your business after a great experience is probably still not going to be first thing on their minds. Here are ways to plant some seeds:
Create a small bag stuffer asking them to post a review about their experience and provide the link so they can do this easily.
Consider adding the request to your monthly email blast or send a review request email to your new customers. Bought anything online lately? Consumers are more motivated to respond when the transaction has been recent.
Got some great reviews already? Use them as testimonials online and in your other, traditional advertising efforts
What if some reviews aren’t so great? You may be tempted to purge them or ignore them, but don’t. And definitely don’t even think about “buying” a great review. (Yes, you can do this!) A phony can usually be spied from miles away. If you see a bad review, plan to respond, but you should also know in many cases of not-so-stellar reviews, a great customer will jump to your defense. Overall, you want people to be truthful in what they say so you can address real problems and fix them. Customers are looking for transparency and honesty, so be real in your interactions with customers. Online searchers are smart enough to make a judgment in your favor if the majority of what is being said is good. And with the potential for an online review, you know you and your employees will work hard to keep them that way.
Want to know more about getting started with reviews? Contact email@example.com