Every business for sure receives some sort of feedback, compliment or a comment from their customer, and others that use their products or services. Now how can we make these reviews and feedback work for our business? Many potential customers read reviews and feedbacks of others before they make their final decision. I do this all the time, whether I’m booking my car insurance, or a holiday package, or even buying a new program or device. I tend to ask others that have used their services or products before or read reviews online, before I make the final decision.
As an online business always try to encourage your customers to leave you a review or feedback at every possible opportunity. Whether it may be though a review portal, or your own website, gaining reviews about your business and services has many plus points, and overall It improves your brand awareness.
How can we encourage reviews?
When starting up a business, it may seem a like a mountain to climb to get your first review, but once you get going it becomes second nature, and also once more users tart to leave a review about your services and products it will attract and encourage others to do the same too.
Ask: If you do not ask you do not get, its simple, every time you sell a product or meet one of your customers, ask them, “would you mind leaving us a quick review and feedback” it can be about your product or service. Every time I have asked they have never said “ No”. It’s a different story if they actually go back and complete the review, but they have not said “No” which gives you the opportunity to remind them, and help them. As sometimes they want to leave a review for you but do not know how to, or just need that extra help.
Email: Send an email with details and instructions on how to leave you a review, do this straight after they have received the product or service. As it would be fresh in there mind, and they will be able to offer you a good review. Rather than leaving it for a week or two, as by than, their mind would have been taken away of the product that they were excited about which they just bought.
Survey: This is a very cleaver way of getting a feedback and testimonial, ask them to fill out a quick online survey, asking a few quick questions, of what they thought, and in what areas you could improve. Making it as simple as possible for them.
Where can you get reviews?
I would say not to just limit your self on just one source of incoming reviews such as your website, or just Google Places. As if that avenue closes down, all of your testimonials and reviews have vanished. Best thing to do is to spread them out, encourage different users to leave you reviews in different platforms, and some of them would not even mind leavening your reviews in more than one place.
So where should my customers leave me a review:
Your Business website: Probably the most obvious and simple place to display customer’s reviews. When your customers email you a feedback post it on your website. This option is fairly limited and only has the benefit once the user is actually on your website. I’m not really a keen of displaying or reading reviews of business website, its good to have them there, but I don’t see it holding much value. As you as website owner can influence that review, its your website, you can post what you like on your site…Right?
What I tend to do is the reviews I receive on other platform, I copy and past them into my website. So if a customer emails me a review, I would send them a link to a reviewing platform, such as some listed below, asking them to past their email into there. By Doing so, you are tapping into larger audience, the chances of others seeing your review is more, rather than just making it visible for your website visitors.
Google Local Business: One of my favourite places, as the review shows up on your Google Maps profile, and also in search results you get some starts next to your review in search results. For users to leave you a review on Google is simple, all they need to be is logged into their Google account (now who doesn’t have a Google account, especially with Google +, its increasing daily). Once they are logged in they just leave you a review. You can encourage users to leave their feedback on Google by sending them your Google Places link. If the link is really big, I tend to shorten the link using: http://goo.gl/.
The plus point of users leaving you a review on Google Places, is that it shows Google what others think about your business. Which will have an impact on your rankings in search results. Always encourage this as a firs point where users can leave you a review.
Online Directories: Your business probably has profiles on the web on various directories. Have a look in your website Analytics, to see which of the directories you are getting a decent amount of traffic, based on this, you can encourage your existing users to leave a review on that directory, to tap into the extra traffic.
You can see some examples of directories that I have used for my Web Solutions Business to get customers to leave a review and feedback:
Social Media: We all know how powerful social media is these days, every person you come across either has a Facebook or a Twitter account. Most of our friends and families spend their time on social media platforms, interacting with others. Imagine my Mum even joined Facebook. I got an invite from here the other day, I was in a shock…MUM.
Keeping to the topic, you can encourage your customers to leave you a comment and mention their experience with your organisation on these platforms. This will encourage others to comment, like and share with others, which will grow your brand awareness.
So what are the benefits of all these reviews?
By having all of these reviews and feedbacks from various avenues, now you are increasing your awareness, and also giving assurance to your potential customers that are thinking of buying into your products or service. So they know exactly what to expect.
Having reviews and testimonials do increase sales and revenue. What are your thoughts?