#Hunt: The importance of online reviews
Paul Hunt is a marketing consultant
Following on from my piece last week, I now want to look at online reviews, as these are another important part of the jigsaw in relation to your online presence.
Like it or not, the reviewing online of all matter of services is commonplace and in a piece of research conducted by Brightlocal in 2016, the following figures were quoted:
- 84% of people trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation
- Seven out of 10 consumers will leave a review for a business if they’re asked to
- 90% of consumers read less than 10 reviews before forming an opinion about a business
- 54% of people will visit the website after reading positive reviews
- 73% of consumers think that reviews older than three months are no longer relevant
- 74% of consumers say that positive reviews make them trust a local business more
- 58% of consumers say that the star rating of a business is most important
Based on the above, can you afford not to develop a process to encourage customers to leave reviews?
You also need to then monitor them and ensure you respond promptly to any negative reviews, it is wise to respond directly to the customer outside of the review site too.
I recommend that you start simply by encouraging customers to leave reviews on your Google business page.
Customers need to be registered with Google, but that’s the only stipulation.
As shown last week, concentrating on improving your business page on Google will make your business stand out from the local competition.