Roughly 8 in 10 consumers report using online reviews to judge whether a local business is a good business (BrightLocal), which makes this aspect of digital marketing crucial for today’s small-medium sized business. However, getting customers to post reviews where they’ll be seen by potential customers can be tricky given the many online review sites available. Whether you’re a hotel, lawyer, consultant, or manufacturer, to help you get started we’re sharing the 3 most important places online where your business should be gathering reviews right now!
1. Google+ Local Account
The information posted through Google+ often shows up in Google’s organic search results, making the content on your Google+ account even more valuable to your overall digital marketing strategy.
If your business has a properly set-up Google+ Local account, then user-reviews on your Google+ Local page can show up in Google search results, thereby highlighting your credibility and potentially attracting more attention to your company!
Below, we can see a hotel’s star-ratings from their Google+ Local account being pulled directly into Google’s carousel results:
Bonus: Here’s a must-see article for hotels, resorts, and inns on the importance of Google+ Local and online reviews!
2. Industry-Specific Review Sites
Today’s shoppers frequently visit industry-specific websites where they can read reviews about particular products or services.
Travelers, for example, who are searching for a hotel in Boston, MA may visit TripAdvisor.com, while a personal injury victim may use Avvo.com to find local attorneys. Likewise, people who are searching for hotels in Lake George, NY may browse the lodging channel on LakeGeorge.com.
For a more robust online review strategy that “covers all of your bases,” be sure to identify the industry-specific review sites that are relevant to your target audience, and then build a profile where you can direct customers to share their feedback.
3. Your Company’s Website
In an era where buyers are empowered to gather information on their own terms, it’s likely that your website is the primary point of contact for most shoppers before they ever contact your business.
When it comes to sharing guest reviews, what better place is there to feature such feedback than on your own website?
The benefit of featuring this information on your website is that you own your website (depending on the company that built your website, of course!), so if something happens to your account on the third-party review sites mentioned above then you can be assured that customer reviews are still accessible through your website.
Bonus: Did you know that customer satisfaction ratings featured on your website can actually be displayed as star-ratings in the search results? When coded with “review schema”- a markup code that helps search engines understand the content on your site- your website may stand out more in the search engines! This is one of the many factors to consider when judging great SEO companies from the impostors.
How’s Your Online Review Strategy?
As more shoppers turn to the web to research local businesses, having a plan to capture online reviews is essential to your brand’s image and overall digital marketing strategy.
When you’re ready to take your strategy to the next level, contact the team at Mannix Marketing, Inc. for a personalized marketing assessment!