Online reviews are getting increasingly important and play an increasingly bigger role in the consumers ‘ decision making process.
According to eTailing Group 92% of Internet users read product reviews and 89% of people say that reviews influence their purchasing decision.
This find is supported by a Bright Local 2014 study that found that almost 9 out of 10 consumers have looked at reviews in the last 12 months to help them make a decision on a local business and furthermore that 4 out of 10 consumers do so as a regular action. The same study also revealed that “67% of consumers say that they read up to 6 reviews when researching a buying decision (vs. 77% in 2013) and that 85% of consumers say they read up to 10 reviews (vs. 92% in 2013), in addition 7% of consumers say they read 20+ reviews (vs. 2% in 2013)”. In other words, a business really needs to have at least 6-10 reviews and that these reviews are predominantly great and have a high rating such as 4 or preferably 5 stars.
A 2013 study conducted by Dimensional Research also confirms it stating that “90% of online customers were influenced into buying a product or using a service based on their reading of positive reviews. Of the 1,046 respondents, up to 86% said a negative review would influence their decision. The study also demonstrated the effect of social media platforms on reviewing, with the most popular site for positive reviews being Facebook. The most common place to find negative reviews was revealed to be online review sites.
The online realm has made is possible for all to post, write and share their opinion about pretty much anything for all to see and the many different review and consumer sites including the social media platforms makes it all even more visible to the world.
Since according to the Bright Local survey 70% of Consumers Trust A Business With A Minimum of 6 Reviews as you conduct your business you will actually want to inspire your customers to post reviews on your business encouraging them of course that such reviews are positive. No reviews and many consumers just don’t trust you. Too many bad reviews and you can guess how that will affect your business.
If you have a business that provides a fairly identical service as two other businesses and you show up in an online search result together. If you have an average rating of say 3.5 stars, one of the other competitors has no reviews and the the second competitor has an average rating of 4,7 stars. Who do you believe the consumer is likely to call? A difference of 1 star rating could spell a difference in many thousands of dollars for your business. Amazon was perhaps one of the first places to incorporate reviews on their site and the impact was substantial leading to much more sales for books that had many positive reviews. Likewise Google has shown that those links that come with highest ratings (along with high number of reviews) receive more clicks than those with poorer ratings (and lower numbers of reviews).
A difference of ONE star in an online review profile can lead to a 5-9% difference in revenues. (Harvard Business Review)
Yelp Study Shows Extra Half-Star Nets Restaurants 19% More Reservations (Huffington Post)
The numbers are important too. The more reviews the better, as long as the reviews are good. If two businesses have good and similar star rating, but one business has only say 12 reviews and the other has 167 reviews, then most consumers will go for the business with the most reviews.
It’s OK that a few reviews are not top ratings. Even a 1 star review or just 2 or 3 star reviews can be OK for a business to have, as long as the overwhelming indication judging from reviews are 4 or 5 stars. The lesser star reviews adds to the credibility of the collective impression of the reviews. Hardly anybody buys into a review system, if all reviews are 5 stars. If you serve a lot of customers, chances are that one or more of them will have a bad experience and will rate your business accordingly. But if the ratings are mixed with different amounts of stars and the overwhelming amount of reviews are 4 and 5 stars, then your business will soon appear worthy of consumers spending.
You are building your reputation every day you are doing business. Conduct your business well, deliver great service, awesome quality and treat your customers well, and you will build a great reputation. On the flip side of that, you are really just one review away from a bad reputation and recency of reviews matter too, so basically you are never off the hook, but are continuously monitored by consumers and customers.
I take it as granted that you wish to build a great business and do well by your customers, so as mentioned as you build your business and your reputation you may want to instill and encourage your customers to give reviews. Do it right and you will have many reviews that have a high star rating average.
It is important that you keep monitoring your reputation, the ratings and reviews that people might give your business on various consumer oriented sites and elsewhere such as on various social media platforms. Address the negative reviews. Reach out to the customer who had a bad experience and see if you can do right by the customer. Perhaps it might even turn the negative review into a positive. Also as you receive a negative review, be sure to evaluate and review your service, product, quality, whatever was the cause of the negative experience. Make sure that it’s not an ongoing issue and that perhaps it was just a mishap or a glitch. If indeed you find that you do have a challenge in your delivery, service, quality or other standards, implement causes of action to correct it, so future customers can receive a positive experience.
Once you then have great and positive reviews and ratings, the Reputation Marketing comes into play to leverage these. Basically, you will want to emphasize the positive reviews and the positive ratings and comments that your customers have given your business. This is where we at Amazing Ideas, Inc. can help. We can basically make use of all the high star ratings and the raving reviews you have and market these so they become even more dominant and visible in online searches and in awareness of customers, present and future.
It also means that a seriously bad review could be overpowered and not appear so prominently any more. A seriously bad review could of course be a real one, but it could also be a disgruntled employee, a competitor or a troll or someone who just had a seriously bad day. Someone who is just out to cause your business harm. You never really know. While I suggest to you all reviews seriously and act accordingly, you don’t want a very bad review to be the first thing a potential customer sees. When we highlight your best reviews and highest star ratings, you will have a solid chance that that’s what your next potential customer will see instead.
We do not recommend nor engage in fake reviews. No, we use the real reviews you have received. We take the best ones and we ensure they get seen to greater extend and that they appear more in search results and higher in the ranking of the search engines. It’s basically about showing off your best sides and in such a way that this is what will prevail mostly in search results and along with first impressions.
We make this happen by combining your real and high star rated reviews with the power of video marketing, authority building, search engine optimization, syndication and a few other elements that all come together in one professional package.
You can call now (888-988-2489) or send us an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) to discuss how we can help you not only get a high search engine ranking, but also that this high ranking, the first impression, is an awesome one. It’s very convincing for a potential customer indeed, when they see your result pop up along with a 5 star ranking and review.
The Bright Local survey showed that 88% of consumers say they trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. In other words, we believe in the reviews almost to the extend that we would had it come fro a trusted friend or relative. Imagine if one of the first things your next potential customer saw, was a high star rating and review that was overwhelmingly convincing. Do you think he or she would call you right away?
Here’s part of what Wikipedia writes on the subject of Reputation Marketing: “Increasing numbers of review websites such as Yelp, are gaining credibility and influence over consumer purchasing decisions. This has attracted the attention of Harvard Business School which conducted a study of online reviews and their effects on restaurants. The study found that a one star increase in Yelp rating led to a 5-7% increase in restaurant revenue, which was a major impact on local restaurants and very little on big chains. A similar study done at UC Berkeley reports that a half star improvement on a five star rating could make it 30-49% more likely that a restaurant will sell out its evening seats.”
At Amazing Ideas, Inc. we can help you rank high in the search engines along with your 5 star rated review prominently featured. Hardly anything else is more convincing to a potential new customer than that. You be sure to receive more clicks and more business. Call 888-988-2489 Now to discuss or send us an email to email@example.com.
The Power And Importance Of Online Reviews by Mikkel Pitzner