For many businesses across industries, online reviews are essential. Online reviews can influence where your website ranks in search results and they can have an impact on the links people choose to click. Just as importantly, e-commerce reviews can have an effect on your sales and thus your bottom line.
Of course, bad reviews can have the opposite effect. While that’s the case, negative reviews also give you an opportunity to redeem your business in the eyes of their authors as well as other shoppers. When people take the time to script a negative review, they are making you aware of an issue that you might not have known about, a problem that may also be having a negative effect on others.
If you get a negative review, it’s crucial for you to refrain from deleting it. If you remove it, your actions may negatively influence your credibility. No reasonable person expects every single review of a brand to be positive. If you only have positive reviews in a mix of hundreds or thousands of them, it will cause people to question the believability of your positive reviews as well as your credibility.
Remember – negative reviews present opportunities for you. Just as it’s vital for you to leave negative reviews online and visible, it’s equally important for you to respond to them. When you offer to right a perceived wrong, it shows that you care about your customers which can not only salvage your relationship with the “complainer,” it can also leave a positive impression in the minds of others.
Tips to Generate Positive Reviews
While it’s inevitable that businesses will receive the occasional negative review, it’s obviously necessary for you to take steps to ensure your brand receives more positive reviews than negative ones. Every e-commerce review you get contributes to your “star” rating, after all, so your reputation management strategy must include a constant effort to generate more positive reviews.
According to BrightLocal’s “Local Consumer Review Survey 2017,” 49 percent of shoppers need a company to have a least a four-star rating online before they’ll do business with that organization. With 73 percent of consumers trusting a business more if it has positive reviews, generating good reviews is more important than ever.
Here are some tips that can help you generate more positive online reviews for your brand and your products or services:
Let People Know What Review Sites Your Business Is On
To motivate people to review your business, you need to let them know what review websites your business in on. You can do this by adding the relevant widgets to your website, blog, and social media pages. If you don’t want to do that, add one line that reads something like “let us know what you think” with a link to the review site where you want people to share their thoughts.
Communicate Your Online Presence Offline
Depending on the review sites your business is listed on, you may have access to window stickers or certificates that you can display at your physical location to promote your presence on those review sites. In addition to displaying things provided by the review sites you use, you should encourage people to review your business on a select review website at the bottom of each printed receipt you hand out.
One way to inspire people to review your business is to add mention that they could win something near the call to action you include at the bottom of your receipts. Offering them the chance to win a cash prize or something else that’s valuable may motivate more people to review your business.
Include Links in Your Newsletters and Emails
If you send digital newsletters, include a link to a review website in each one and request that your readers leave a review of your business on that website. If you send personalized emails in lieu of newsletters, you can encourage people to review your business by adding a line to your digital signature, such as “Be sure you check us out on [insert name of review website].”
Engage on Social Media
When it comes to online reputation management, your e-commerce reviews are more important than the number of followers or likes you’ve accumulated on social media. While that’s the case, your social media pages can be a great source for online reviews. You can ask your followers to review your business directly and provide a convenient link that will take them to the website where you want them to leave their comments.
Make the Most of Review Request Tools
Depending on the email marketing provider you use and the review sites your business is listed on, you may have access to free review request tools. These user-friendly tools allow you to use a template to create emails you can send to your contacts to ask them to write a review of your brand.
Create a Friendly Competition
To generate reviews, you can create a competition among your customers and motivate them to participate by offering a prize. You can give a cash prize or one of your best-selling items to the person who leaves the funniest review in a given month, for example.
Provide Great Wi-Fi Service
If you have a brick-and-mortar retail location, it’s vital that you provide fantastic, free Wi-Fi service if you want to get more positive reviews. When people have instant access to the Internet, it greatly increases the odds that they’ll geo-tag their posts and share online reviews of your business, especially if they’re going to stay at your location for several days.
While following the tips provided above will certainly help you generate more positive reviews, it’s also important that you pick your review sites carefully. You need to ensure the review sites you list your business on are directly relevant to your industry, reliable, secure, trustworthy and attractive to the members of your target market.
If you need help managing your reputation online or you’re lost when it comes to generating more positive reviews of your organization and your products or services, GoingClear Interactive can help. To learn about our digital marketing and online reputation management services, contact GoingClear Interactive today.