Get Noticed For The Good
Online reviews have created a new form of marketing and communication that bridges the gap between word-of-mouth and a viral form of feedback. Each review posted online by a customer is a form of advertising for your business. Your name and product are exposed to readers, increasing their awareness of who you are and what you do.
Online reviews are crucial to any business that wants to keep control of its online reputation. Reviewing has changed the face of online marketing since the Internet became a household convenience. It allows businesses to have active participation from consumers and gives consumers a solid foundation to create a relationship with those businesses, so it pays to keep in control of it.
Reviews can also influence internet search engine results. Search engines such as Google take into account how many times your business name is mentioned in reviews. If you're mentioned a lot of times, you're likely to appear higher in the search results for a particular type of business than one that isn't reviewed very often.
Research shows that consumers generally trust peer recommendations more than they trust advertising. Consumers are most likely to trust recommendations from people they know, but many also consider online sources to be credible. The biggest reason why online reviews are important to businesses is that ultimately it increases sales by giving consumers the information they need to make the decision to purchase a product or service from a business. People are always much more likely to purchase a product or service that has already been recommended by others.
Some online reviews may raise concerns or suggest improvements related to your business. This can be a good opportunity to resolve a customer's problem and/or improve business practices. Many customers also have good suggestions about better ways to do things, or new products that you could offer, so review sites can be a free source of great business ideas.
Many times online review pages can become active social communities where consumers leave reviews and keep coming back to see if others have made comments on their reviews or to simply see what other consumers have to say about your product or service in general. This creates a social community of consumer engagement that allows consumers to form an attachment to both the business and the other consumers as well.
Like many other forms of social media, online review sites give you the chance to develop a closer relationship with your customers. You're likely to get to read reviews from a range of customers, many of whom might not otherwise tell you their opinions of your business. You can also reply to both positive and negative reviews, demonstrating that you're interested in what customers have to say.
The act of getting reviews and the practice of responding to reviews showcasing full circle of customers coming in, interacting with you and with you showing appreciation.