Did you know that more than 90% of Americans admit to looking at online reviews for small businesses on a regular basis? Many of them take a look at reviews when trying to figure out whether or not to patronize a business in their area.
For this reason, it’s important for small businesses to rack up as many reviews as they can online. It’s also important for them to put a strong emphasis on collecting as many positive reviews as possible so that they make a great impression on potential customers reading their reviews.
Is your small business having a hard time getting great reviews from your customers?
If so, you should, of course, make sure that you’re giving your customers something to rave about in their reviews. They might not be leaving your business positive reviews because they’re not blown away by your products and/or services.
But you should also go out of your way to entice them to leave you reviews. The easier it is for them to leave these reviews, the better off your business will be.
Learn the best ways to get your customers to leave positive reviews for your customers below.
Make It Easy for People to Leave Reviews on Your Website
If a customer wanted to leave a review—positive or negative—for your business, how easy would it be for them to do it? If they have to spend half an hour trying to find out where to leave a review, they’re probably not going to get around to doing it.
Ideally, you should set up a special “Reviews” section on your business website to house all the reviews that your company receives. It should be very easy for people to locate when they’re visiting your website.
You should also set up spots on other parts of your website where your customers can either leave reviews or click over to your “Reviews” section to leave a review. The goal should be to make it as simple as possible for people to leave reviews for you.
Provide People With Lots of Other Places to Leave Reviews
Your business website is one place people are going to go when they’re interested in leaving a review for your company. But it’s not the only place that they should be able to leave a review.
These days, many people also leave reviews for businesses on websites like Yelp, Facebook, and Google. Therefore, it’s going to be essential for you to create profiles for your business on these sites so that customers can leave reviews on them.
You should set up profiles for your business today if you haven’t done it already and include all your company’s information so that people know it’s you. This will give people multiple places to leave reviews for your business.
If you can swing it, you should also link these profiles on third-party sites to your website so that people can read reviews from them on your site. It’ll tie all your many reviews together and give people no excuse not to leave a review for your business.
Find Effective Ways to Let Your Customers Know Where to Leave Reviews
When you provide people with a place to leave reviews for your business on your website and create profiles on third-party review sites, people shouldn’t have too much trouble figuring out where to leave reviews.
But it’s worth noting that there are plenty of people out there who are not tech-savvy in the least. Reports have indicated that even Millenials aren’t as tech-savvy as many people think.
These people literally need you to hold their hands and show them where to leave reviews before they do it. You can do this for them by:
- Including links to places where people can leave reviews in the emails you send out to customers
- Writing down the websites where people can leave reviews on the bottom of the receipts you give to customers
- Posting the websites where people can leave reviews near your cash register
By taking these steps, you should be able to make it abundantly clear where your customers can leave reviews for you. It’ll make it simple for them to find a place to give your business positive reviews if they choose to do it.
Know the Right Times to Ask Your Customers for Reviews
There are good times and bad times to ask your customers for reviews. Knowing the difference between the two could ultimately help you lock down more reviews for your business as you move forward.
An example of a good time to ask a customer for an online review would be a few days after they receive a product that they ordered from you online. You can send them an email asking how they like the product and ask them to leave a review for it if they feel so inclined.
An example of a bad time to ask a customer for an online review would be right after they made a purchase from you. It won’t give them enough time to get the product and try it out, and it’ll make it seem like you want them to leave a review in spite of this.
Timing is key when it comes to trying to get your customers to leave online reviews for you. By waiting until the right time, you can increase your chances of getting your customers to leave you reviews.
Offer Incentives to Your Customers for Leaving Reviews
If you do everything that we’ve mentioned thus far and find that you’re still struggling to rack up reviews from your customers, it’ll be time to take your efforts to the next level. You’re going to have to work extra hard to get the ball rolling.
Many businesses have found that one of the best ways to motivate people to leave reviews is by offering them special incentives. This tends to give people all the motivation they need to leave reviews for companies that they’ve ordered products and/or services from in the past.
There are so many incentives you can consider offering to your customers. They include:
- Coupons to save money on in-store purchases
- Discount codes to save money on online purchases
- Gift cards for future in-store and online purchases
- Entries for free giveaways
- Cash and other prizes
It has been scientifically proven that people’s brains are wired to love “free” stuff. Give people something for free and they’ll be more likely to leave you positive reviews.
Get Into the Habit of Responding to Reviews (Yes, Even the Negative Ones!)
Once you start doing some of the things that we’ve talked about, you should begin to see more and more of your customers leaving reviews. Many of these reviews will, hopefully, be positive reviews.
You should respond to each customer who leaves a positive review and thank them for taking the time to do it. People will really appreciate you going out of your way to respond to their reviews.
There are, however, bound to be a few bad reviews thrown into the mix, too. People will leave them when they’re not 100% satisfied with a product and/or service from your business. You should respond to these reviews as well.
Apologize to customers who didn’t love the product and/or service they received from your company and do what you can to make things right with them. Offer to give them a refund on a product or to provide them with another service free of charge.
By making an effort to make things right, you might be able to transform negative reviews into positive ones. You’ll also show people that you’re fully invested in your online reviews and care about what they say.
Share the Positive Reviews That Your Customers Leave
After you’ve received your fair share of positive reviews, you should do something with them. Don’t just allow them to gather dust as they slip further and further down your list of online reviews!
There are so many ways that you can share great reviews and showcase your business in the best light. You can:
- Add some of your positive reviews to your email signature
- Work your positive reviews into the body of emails that you send out to your customers
- Create social media posts that include references to your positive reviews
People shouldn’t have to dig deep into your online reviews to find the positive ones. They should be front and center at all times so that people know what your company is all about.
Incorporate the Positive Reviews From Your Customers Into Your Marketing Materials
According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, businesses should spend anywhere from 7 to 8% of their gross revenue on marketing every year. Marketing your business is going to be of the utmost importance if you want it to succeed.
You can market your business in any number of ways. Marketing it could be as simple as setting up social media pages for it and connecting with new customers through them. It could also be as complex as shooting TV commercials and airing them on your local TV stations.
You’re more than welcome to market your business to the masses in whatever way you think would work best. But when you do, you shouldn’t be shy about sharing your reviews with those who see your marketing materials.
If, for instance, you’re going to use social media to market your business, you should, first and foremost, make sure you have a place for people to leave reviews for you on social media. You should also use your social media pages to broadcast the most positive reviews that are left.
Or, if you’re going to shoot a TV commercial, you should find ways to work reviews that people have left into it. It’s one of the many tried-and-true strategies for those interested in making the most of a TV advertising campaign.
If you’re not 100% sure how to work reviews into your marketing efforts, a great public relations company can show you how to do it. They’ll find ways to do it seamlessly so that it doesn’t distract from the larger message you’re trying to send.
Build on the Momentum That Positive Reviews From Your Customers Will Create
It might take you a little while to start racking up positive reviews, especially if your small business is still on the newer side. It’s not always that easy for companies to get these kinds of reviews right away.
But over time, you should begin to see more and more of them, and you should do whatever it takes to build on the momentum that they create. It feels good to get great reviews from customers, so you shouldn’t take any of them for granted.
Share the great reviews that your business receives with those who work for you. It will motivate them to continue to work hard to make your products and/or services even better than they already are.
Hang up some of the reviews you receive in your own office, too. They’ll encourage you to keep on pushing when the going gets tough for your business.
By doing these types of things, you can build on your company’s momentum and keep the great reviews coming in over the long haul.
Start Accumulating More Positive Reviews From Your Customers From Now On
As a small business owner, customer satisfaction should be your No. 1 priority at all times. If your customers aren’t satisfied with your products and/or services, you should work as hard as you have to in order to change that.
Otherwise, your business isn’t going to get enough positive reviews, and it’s going to take a toll on you over time. It won’t be long before your customer base starts to dry up as a result of negative reviews.
Use the tips found here to earn reviews from customers and keep your business strong. It’ll put your business in a position to succeed year in and year out.
Find out more tips for improving your company’s online reputation by browsing through some of the other business stories on our website.