Online reviews – we all check them out, whether it’s for a restaurant, a new car purchase, or a medical professional. We know how valuable they are when we read them. But are you taking the time to cultivate that type of experience for your customers? Creating that advantage for your business?
More reviews mean better SEO, more social credibility, and more usable data for your company to source. But how do companies get reviews? Making a one-time push for reviews is common. Brick and mortar retail stores and restaurants will solicit reviews after a grand opening or event. Online companies will get reviews after rolling out a new product or service.
Having current customer reviews makes a huge difference as most people consider reviews that are a few months old irrelevant. So what are ways your company can keep the reviews rolling in consistently?
A great way to get customers to leave reviews is by directly asking them. The challenge here is doing so in the right way, at the right time. Here are some ideas.
- Set up an automated email asking for a customer review. Schedule it to go out a week or so after a customer has made a purchase. Make sure you give them enough time to receive and use the product before scheduling the email to send.
- A social media campaign is a great way to get people to engage with and review your company. You can roll out a marketing initiative that asks people to follow your account and leave a review in return for a coupon code, gift card, or other opportunity.
- Send out a social media post asking for loyal customers to give back. This can be done in a friendly, personal tone that encourages people who care about your company to come forward and show their support. Be sure to express your gratitude and make it cheerful—you don’t want to appear desperate!
- Asking one–to–one is also a great way to get reviews. Consider setting up a wrap-up meeting after completing a project for a client. Use this time to ask them about their experience, make sure they have everything they need, and request a review from them. This is a great practice when your business offers services that require in-person or video meetings. People respond well to being asked personally—happy customers want to give back!
Make it easy
Optimize the pathways your customers can take to leave reviews by creating multiple avenues for them to do so. The easier it is to leave a review, the more likely people are to take the time to leave you one. You can do this by:
- Creating easy, direct routes from your website to pages like Facebook, Yelp, and Google Review by adding badges to your menu bar and footer
- Making sure you add a link asking for a review to your email signature
- Adding a link for reviews to your product pages and conformation emails
What NOT to do
An important rule to getting reviews: Never pay anyone for a positive review. It is not only illegal but can be very obvious to anyone reading them. When customers come across fake reviews they immediately lose trust in the company. If your company is getting fake positive reviews, it will backfire and undermine the social credibility and legitimacy of your company.
Ready for takeoff!
Make sure you keep your eyes out for new ways of engaging customers and bringing in reviews. The internet is constantly changing and staying on top of current trends is critical to maintaining relevance. Any way you look at it, reviews are going to help your company get visibility, credibility, and informative, usable data.
Talk with your team, create a plan for asking for reviews, and then stick with it! Consistent reviews can give your business the social proof you need for a boost in both SEO and credibility. And unlike so many other activities, it doesn’t require a line in your budget!
Content provided by Q4iNetwork and partners
Photo by: melpomen