The Power of Positive Reviews: How to Encourage and Leverage Them for Your Business

Leveraging Positive Reviews for Business Growth - Consultus Digital

For business owners across industries, positive reviews are a powerful resource for influencing consumer decisions. According to a study by BrightLocal, 92% of consumers read online reviews before making a purchase. Think of the last time you were deciding on a restaurant in a new city or comparing products online. Odds are you at least took note of the 5-star rating of the options at hand. 

Leveraging the power of positive reviews is essential for a business’s online presence and reviews can have an array of uses for marketing materials. In this article, we will explore how you can gain more positive reviews for your business and how to use those reviews as part of your digital marketing strategy

The Value of Online Reviews

In today’s digital age, the ways consumers interact with brands and make purchasing decisions have transformed. Today we rely much more on a brand’s online presence and reputation to inform our purchasing decisions. Word-of-mouth recommendations are still valuable–they are still one of the most powerful influences in buyer decision-making–but now online reviews are almost as impactful. 84% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.

Here is how positive reviews can benefit your business:

  • Building Trust–Positive reviews help to signal that your business is trustworthy and that your product or service is valuable
  • Increasing Sales–Products with positive reviews are 270% more likely to be purchased than products with no reviews
  • SEOPositive reviews signal that your business has authority and relevance for a given search and make it more likely that you will rank higher on results pages, especially if they include keywords

How to Gain More Positive Reviews

Okay, we can probably all agree that positive reviews are great, but what can you do as a business owner to get customers to leave reviews?

Offer an Exceptional Product or Service

Gaining positive reviews starts with creating a product or offering a service that customers love. If your product or service exceeds customer expectations, it will be easy for them to have nice things to say. In some cases that is all it takes to earn enough reviews, although, usually it takes a bit more work. 

Create a Memorable Customer Experience 

Along the same line of thinking, providing exceptional customer service or creating a one-of-a-kind customer experience will make people want to share that experience with others. Coupling a great product with great service is the recipe for creating a loyal customer base and brand ambassadors. These are the people who are most likely to leave positive reviews, share online content, and recommend your business to their family and friends.

Ask Customers to Leave a Review

The best way to receive more reviews from your customers is simply to ask! If you’ve given your customers a product they enjoy or a memorable service, you might be surprised by how many people are happy to leave a review. 

You don’t have to ask them face-to-face (though it is an effective strategy). A super effective way to get more reviews is to create avenues to gather customer emails and send follow-up emails after they make a purchase. For online purchases, this might involve asking for an email at check-out or adding a pop-up to your webpage for a newsletter opt-in. You might also want to consider creating a membership program or adding an opt-in option when customers make reservations or bookings.

You can also incentivize reviews by offering promotions or discounts in return for a review or an email. This is common in e-commerce but is also effective for in-person transactions. Lots of people would be happy to leave a review in exchange for a free sample. 

Make the Review Process Simple

Fortunately, channels like Google, Facebook, Yelp, Tripadvisor, etc. make it easy for customers to leave reviews. However, you can help by taking some simple steps. Make sure your business is properly registered or certified by these channels so it is easy to find. Adding a simple option to leave a review on your website goes a long way as well.

Responding to Reviews

By responding to reviews, you can directly communicate with your customers. Responding demonstrates appreciation for their patronage and provides an opportunity to showcase customer service and address concerns expressed in negative reviews. 

Responding to Negative Reviews 

Effectively responding to negative reviews requires a bit of tact. Negative reviews can be difficult to accept, but they offer you an opportunity to address their concerns, minimize the damage, and potentially improve your business.

Here are some best practices for responding to negative reviews:

  • Acknowledge the issue and take steps to resolve it
  • Respond promptly to show that you are dedicated to providing a positive customer experience
  • Always remain professional and empathetic, these responses are a direct reflection of your business
  • Take their comments and concerns seriously–they may offer insights into how you can improve your product or service so you can prevent the issue from happening again
  • Take the conversation offline when possible to resolve the issue directly with the customer

Responding to Positive Reviews

Responding to positive reviews is a lot simpler, but is still important. Showing that you are present in the customer experience and appreciative of the feedback can leave a good impression and earn more reviews. A simple thank you is usually all it takes to make an impact.

Leveraging Positive Reviews in Marketing Materials 

If you aren’t putting positive reviews to use in your digital marketing strategy, then you aren’t fully harnessing their utility. Positive reviews can be included in a variety of growth marketing materials to highlight the value of your product or service and help boost all of the benefits mentioned above. 

Here are some of the most impactful ways you can leverage positive reviews in your marketing campaigns.

  • Incorporate snippets in social media posts, emails, and ad campaigns 
  • Use particularly positive reviews as the foundation for case studies and success stories
  • Display reviews on your webpage
  • Include reviews on product descriptions

Work With a Digital Marketing Agency for Review Management

For help with review management and leveraging positive reviews as part of your broader digital marketing strategy consider working with a digital marketing agency. The marketing experts at Consultus Digital can help you grow your business by developing and implementing a personalized marketing strategy. We take the time to understand your goals and values to tailor your growth marketing plan to your specific needs, so you can put those positive reviews to use where they will make the biggest impact. Contact us today to book a free consultation.

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