Digital Marketing

How to Increase Your Sales Using Review Sites

Did you know that 85% of people will trust an online review just as much as they trust a personal recommendation?

No longer are customers just stopping in and looking around a store. These days, people will do research on a store before they walk in. They’ll read Internet reviews about the company to give them an idea of whether or not it’s a company to do business with. Reviews do matter – again, 85% of them will trust an online review like they do a personal recommendation.

They matter… a lot!

It stands to reason that if online reviews lead to business, that getting positive reviews is important. You can get good reviews through the offering of good quality products and services, but there are other ways in which to see good reviews and negate the negative ones.

How To Get Reviews

The biggest way to attain reviews is to ask for them. Many businesses will ask customers at the end of a transaction to leave a review when they’re finished. Of course, Ege Marketing suggests businesses not do this. After all, companies tend to only ask for reviews from people who were satisfied with their results.

This is called “self-selection” and doesn’t help a company in the long run. Smart buyers know what to look for. A company review rating of 4.8 or so can do better than a 5.0 rating. Why? A high rating may leave some customers wondering if you’re cheating the system.

Plus, some customers may be annoyed by the asking for a review, usually seen more in younger customers. It doesn’t matter if your business relies on Yelp, the best thing for your business is to not ask for reviews. Popular Reviews is another review website that will compare products for customers and reviews are anonymous, so the system stays fair.

Should You Avoid Asking For Reviews Altogether Then?

Now, you may be wondering if you should even bother asking for reviews. Not at all! It just means how you approach the matter must change. Use social media to advertise your services/product and company. For instance, you can state “Hey, look for us on Yelp!” because you’re not asking for reviews. Establish a social media presence on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and others to advertise your company.

How does this help? It encourages people to talk about what they like about your company and what they wish was different. It’s another kind of review.

You Can’t Please Everyone – How To Deal With Bad Reviews

There’s no way to please everybody – try as you might. You’re going to end up with negative reviews. It could be a simple mistake made on your company’s part, or somebody just wants to be a pain. While you may want to ignore the negative review, don’t do this. A bad review is similar to an in-person complaint. You can’t blow a person off in person, and you shouldn’t do it online either.

Deal with the problem, even if you think the problem is being blown out of proportion. Be patient and do what you can to make their experience a better one. You want to show them that you’ll address all needs, regardless of how you feel about it.

Make sure you respond quickly to negative reviews, and if you notice the same complaint, address it. Consider reaching out to the complaint through email or phone instead of a public online forum. It’s tempting to deal with complaints in a public manner so others can see that you’re dealing with it. However, if you deal with it in a private setting, you can mitigate any further damage if something doesn’t go right.

Ensure The Review Process Is Easy

Most people are annoyed by being asked to fill out a long survey. You need to make sure your company’s making it easy for the reviewer to make their post. Yelp provides stickers that you can add to the website and business window. You can also add a link to a review site that your company uses in various sports – website, emails, newsletters, etc. The idea is to ensure your website can be reviewed on various sites – Google, Yelp, Angie’s List, etc.

You want to provide people with the opportunity to write a review, so they’ll do it.

Another way to get people to write reviews is to offer them an incentive to do so. Consider giving them a discount for leaving a review. Of course, this can be a bit tricky to do. They may write a review just to get the discount and can discredit the review. According to Mashable, it’s better to give the gift after the review is left without any prior notification to do so. This lets you thank the customers for their review without being coerced into doing so.

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Scott Crone has been writing on tech subjects and SEO for over 6 years.

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