People trust reviews. According to studies by Statista, 85% of consumers consider an overall average star rating as the most crucial aspect of local business online reviews. For 73% of the respondents, the reviews must be recent.
Your potential clients are checking what others say about your company online. If they are happy with the reviews and star ratings, they are more likely to do business with you. While it is normal to get the occasional negative review, encouraging positive reviews is necessary to build your brand and ultimately increase your revenue.
Here’s how to get more online reviews for your business.
1. Post reviews on social media
Reviews shared on business review sites like Google, Yelp, Tripadvisor, and Facebook are social proof for your organization. Sharing positive reviews and video testimonials is one way to capture your followers' attention.
Here’s an example of an Instagram post by education services provider Apollo International. The organization often shares what the clients say about them on their social accounts:
Using reviews for your social media posts can be as powerful as promotional content, paid ads, and traditional sales content. But how do you get these reviews from other platforms and post them on your social media accounts? AI marketing tools for content creation can help.
Consider using Canva to make your social posts visually attractive, too. Canva offers social media templates in default sizes for posting on every social media channel. It takes just a few clicks to craft an Instagram or Facebook post ready for posting.
Share your positive reviews on your Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram accounts. They can serve as a break from your more sales-y posts, too.
2. Offer rewards for reviews
In some cases, people need some encouragement to leave a review. Offering rewards can help you get more reviews. If you opt for this strategy, though, make sure you’re asking for a review. Do not specify you’re looking for a positive review because that’s unethical.
How do you offer that incentive? Check out this example.
Any customer that leaves a Snapdeal review (good or bad) gets entered into a drawing for a $2,000 reward.
Don’t worry. You don’t have to spend this much to implement this strategy. Your company could offer vouchers or discounts. Other ideas include:
- Free e-books
- Gift cards
- Competition entries
Just see which ones yield the best results for you.
3. Use email marketing
Email marketing can help you get more online reviews. Big brands such as PayPal, Etsy, Gap, and Apple commonly use that strategy. All you need to do is get a review form in front of your customer’s face at the right time.
That’s where automation can help you.
Here’s an example of a form sent to customers right after purchasing a product. It’s easy to answer the survey form, too. All the email reader has to do is choose a rating and click the submit button. The results are posted on Trustpilot.
Here’s another example of an email sent right after a dress purchase.
Notice the casual and friendly language used in the email. The email also lists suggestions of what can be written in the review to help the customer answer the survey.
But how exactly do you write an email asking for a review?
Start with a conversational subject line, like “What did you think?” or “How did we do?”. Personalize your email, too. Use the customer’s first name and include the product or service they paid for.
Here’s an email template to help you:
Subject line: How’s your new [product] from [brand name]?
Thank you for ordering [product]! We would love it if you could leave a review so that other customers can learn from your insights.
Please click here to leave a review.
Besides asking for reviews via email, ask your online communities for reviews. The following platforms allow brands to build a community that can be great for gathering user feedback:
4. Use online review sites
Use review sites to gather feedback and show the best features of your company. Businesses can’t control the feedback people write online, but they can at least control the basic information displayed there.
Let’s look at an example. When you Google this Ikea store in Costa Mesa, California, you don’t just get online reviews. You get pictures and other information about the furniture store, too:
Google lets you list your business for free, so you can provide them with all of your key information when people search for your company.
So, before people see the reviews, they see those great pictures of your brand. Add some details on what you offer and business opening times.
Apart from Google My Business, other business review sites include:
- Bing Places for Business
- Facebook Ratings and Reviews
- Better Business Bureau
- Yellow Pages
After signing up for these to gather reviews, take active control of them. You’ll reap the benefits when customers use them to make purchase decisions.
5. Respond to your reviews
Responding to reviews is a way to get more online reviews. If your customers see your company’s engagement when they post a review, they will be encouraged to do it more often. Naturally, other people will follow.
A monitoring tool can help you monitor customer reviews in one place. A monitoring tool like Google Alerts or SEMrush can help you filter opinions and flag the negative ones for you.
As much as everyone would like to avoid receiving bad reviews, responding to those negative ones should be a priority. Learning to respond to reviews–whether good or bad—is crucial to building your brand’s image.
The clinic responds by apologizing and promising to fix the problem. They take the blame and find a solution to improve the service.
6. Ask for reviews offline
Asking for reviews offline can be very effective.
Choose your happy customers and ask for a review in person. Ask them nicely and explain how much reviews mean to the business. Most of the time, they will be happy to do it.
If you have sales representatives within the company that spend a lot of time with customers, they are most likely to build a bond with the clients. The sales reps will be the best people to ask for reviews. They can explain that reviews help other customers get a proper perspective on the business and help you improve your services and products.
Good reviews can help a business grow and get more customers. It matters what people say about your brand online. They can spell the difference between a sale and a lost customer.
So, the more reviews you get, the better for your business.
Gathering reviews is not so hard. Just follow the tips in this article. Post them on social media and use online review sites. Encourage people to leave reviews for your company or products via email or in-person and, occasionally, in exchange for a reward.
If your products or services are great, you’ll have those fantastic reviews that can help your business grow in no time.