Reviews on Google are important for small local businesses.
In many instances the first time a potential customer comes in contact with your business will be on Google. The #1 search engine is often the place consumers go to look up information on businesses. User ratings and reviews are displayed prominently on Google Searches and Google Maps. It is important that your business has reviews showing on Google.
Google Reviews can help your SEO
Many, if not all small businesses are concerned with SEO (search engine optimization) and how they can increase their ranking in online searches. Google, as an information company, is in the business of returning relevant search results to their users. There are many factors that go into a good SEO strategy, but one thing you can start doing right now is to get reviews to increase search relevancy and make your business more visible on Google.
How to get Google Reviews
So now that you know getting reviews on Google for your business is important and can increase your SEO, how do you start getting them? Here are a few practical things you can start doing right away to get Google Reviews…
1. Make sure your business is verified on Google.
It is easy to verify your business on Google. Click Here to get started. Verifying your business helps insure that the information about your business is correct such as location, hours of operation, and phone number. Once your business is verified on Google you will be able to respond to reviews. It is also a good practice so that others are not able to claim your business and make changes to your info. Adding information and pictures that pertain to your business further increases your online presence. Google claims that “Businesses with a complete listing are 2x as likely to be considered reputable.”
2. Ask your customers to leave a review of your business.
Many people like to share their experiences, modern day word of mouth takes place on the internet. Ask them for a review right after they use your service or products, it is fresh in their minds and they are more likely to leave you a better review if they do it right away. If you offer a good product or service they will be happy to leave a review for you and your business. It’s as simple as just asking.
3. Make a button on your website that links to Google Reviews.
Having a “call to action” button on your website can take customers right to your review page. Make it as easy as possible for them to leave a Google review.
4. Have in-shop signage showing that you are on Google.
Physical signs in your place of business can be the best way to drive people to review you on Google.
5. Respond to reviews (Don’t leave bad reviews unattended)
Reviews should be answered. Good review deserve a “thank you” and not so good ones should be addressed in an appropriate manner. See if you can find a solution to their displeasure but make sure not to get into an argument with them on the internet for all to see. If you think a negative review was falsely posted by a competitor you can contact Google to remove it.
Reviews help make your business better.
Reviews in general are a great way to listen to your customers and see what you are doing well and what you can improve upon. Reviews can build trust with potential customers who may not yet know you and your business.
Start getting reviews today!