You’re the master of your industry, you’ve got your brand on lock, you’re killing it in your local market. Then it happens: one bad review rears its ugly head. You’re thinking an online review won’t make or break your business, but you’re wrong. Remember how businesses used to thrive through personal recommendation and word of mouth referrals? That’s what online reviews are today and they matter. A lot.
Everyone is reading online reviews before making their purchasing decisions. 9 out of 10 consumers read customer reviews before purchasing, and 7 out of 10 consumers are more likely to consider a business with positive reviews. Also, 90% of people claimed positive online reviews influence buying decisions, while 86 percent were influenced by negative reviews. If you don’t have a handle on your online reputation you’re not going to make it.
Search engines love reviews because consumers love reviews. So it makes sense that online reviews are playing a major role in your SEO (search engine optimization). It is thought that online reviews are making up 10% of the factors considered by search engines for search result pages. Having reviews increases your website’s likelihood of showing up when people search for your industry.
Now that you know how important online reviews are, it’s time to start working to acquire these positive reviews. Making opportunities available to your customers that are easy, clear and take just moments of their time is a good place to start. However, while many review platforms encourage review solicitation, some sites, like Yelp, will shut it down if they detect anything fishy. Knowing the ins and outs is what it’s all about so you don’t get shut out of major platforms that can majorly impact your business. Good news! Pixaura’s marketing masters already know all of the nitty gritty and will do this for you.
But wait, it’s not just about the number of positive reviews or your star rating. You want your business to appear on review sites that are most impactful for your industry. If you are a local business like a restaurant you obviously need to be on Yelp. If you’re a wedding planner, you better make sure that you’re showing up on The Knot. Did you know that some websites hoard reviews for their site alone, while other sites allow search engines to tap into the data? This may leave your head spinning, but you can rest easy knowing Pixaura’s pros will make sure you’re showing up in the right places and maximize your online reviews.
94% of consumers say an online review has convinced them to avoid a business, and 4 out of 5 consumers have changed their mind about using a business after reading a negative review. Statistics this close to 100% better be at the forefront of your business-managing mind. This much trust in online reviews means those negative reviews are costing you when they go unaddressed.
Keeping tabs on all of these reviews may seem like a handful but it’s an unavoidable part of running a business. Negative reviews should be acknowledged and addressed to combat their negative influence. When a business is flawlessly handling a complaint it goes a long way toward building a relationship of authenticity with the consumer and encouraging use despite the negative review. Internally, don’t let negative reviews rile you up – use them as a jumping off point to discuss improvements.
We bet you never thought online reviews were this important. With everything else that goes into running a business your online management may be taking a back seat. This is a fatal mistake. You’re worrying about inventory, staffing, costs, ROI, product development and all of the tough stuff that comes with being a badass business owner, but dedicating some of your resources to online reputation management will pay off, big time.