Asking For Online Reviews For Your Business? Here’s What NOT To Do
Online reviews aren’t the wave of the future. Their impact is being felt here and now with nearly 90% of consumers trusting them as much as they do personal recommendations. According to a BrightLocal survey released in December 2018, consumers read an average of 10 reviews before deciding if they want to use a business. It’s important that your business gets it right when it asks customers for online reviews.
Here’s what NOT to do:
- Don’t pressure customers for online reviews
Tying reviews to the commission of your sales staff might seem like a good way to motivate them to provide excellent customer service, but sometimes this tactic can backfire too. If you have some sales personnel onboard that become very enthusiastic about obtaining online reviews, your customers could feel coerced and pressured. This can also dampen your brand’s reputation.
- Don’t ask ONLY for positive reviews
Each online review site has its own terms of service (TOS) but nearly all of them stipulate that asking specifically for a positive review is against a big no-no. That’s because visitors to those sites are in search of opinions and feedback that’s natural, authentic, and genuine. Instead, stress to your staff that each customer interaction provides them with the opportunity to obtain a positive review.
- Don’t make it difficult for your customers
How many times have you been to your favorite fast-food restaurant and been told about a review survey on the back of the receipt? While this seems to be a popular way of reaching out to customers, the number who actually follow through once they arrive home is woefully tiny. Instead, make it easy for them by sending them a direct link to a review site via text message.
- Don’t offer bribes in exchange for positive reviews
The premise behind an online review is that customers are writing about their experiences with your brand: the quality of your products and/or services, your amazing staff or the excellent customer service, for example. Online review sites could penalize you if you offer your customers something in exchange for a review.
Many of the top contenders take this very seriously. In fact, Google might decide to de-list your website. Yelp has the option of slapping a “Consumer Alert” label on your profile for 90 long days. Don’t chance it by offering incentives.
- Don’t make reviews a one-time event
In order to be the most successful, you need to implement a system within your company that consistently asks for reviews. If you focus on reviews only during certain times of the year – the holidays, for example, or during your anniversary celebration – they’ll soon become dated. Potential customers want to see recent reviews as a gauge of your business as it is currently.
It’s not surprising that online reviews generate more revenue for your business. But did you know that online reviews can also help your brand achieve better Google ranking and boost its SEO too? As long as you make sure that you don’t do any of the above, your brand should experience all the benefits of online reviews.