As a business owner you are probably well aware of the power of word-of-mouth advertising. When customers relay positive experiences with your company to family members, friends, colleagues, neighbors, and other acquaintances as a trusted source of information, your chances of gaining additional business in the process increases.
After all, consumers are much more likely to trust their peers than, say, advertising campaigns or even testimonials by industry experts. You cannot afford to ignore the power of customer reviews if you want to improve your business prospects.
Of course, it’s not always easy to convince customers to fill out a survey or write a review, even if they’re satisfied with the service they received. How can you encourage positive online reviews as a way to build your virtual reputation and increase awareness of your business? Here are a few tips to help you garner the positive reviews you’re seeking.
In case you didn’t know, there are several sites that help consumers to find the services they seek by listing businesses by region and category and then allowing users to post reviews about the businesses listed. Most people are familiar with popular sites like Yelp, Angie’s List, and Google My Business, just for example.
What you may not realize is that your business could be listed without your knowledge. If you fail to claim the listing, you don’t know what it might say. An unclaimed listing could feature erroneous information like an incorrect address, broken link to your website, or bad phone number.
It may also contain negative reviews from dissatisfied customers (or even shady competitors looking to gain an edge). Failing to address negative reviews and encourage positive ones is as good as shooting yourself in the foot.
The long and short of it is that you can take control by claiming these listings or setting up your own if none exist. Don’t forget to create business profiles on social media, as well, since these outlets can also provide a platform for positive reviews, especially with a young, tech savvy crowd.
Offer Excellent Service
Encouraging positive reviews relies on having a platform available for customers to post reviews, but the process really begins when you provide services that satisfy customers. In some cases, delivering results in a timely manner is all you need to get a positive review.
However, you can do a lot more. Be friendly and accommodating so that customers not only appreciate your service, buy take a liking to you personally. Going out of your way to create personal relationships with clientele is more likely to earn you rave reviews than if a random worker shows up, gets the job done, and hurries away.
Shake hands, smile, and swap names with customers. This introductory interaction only takes a moment and it can make a huge difference in how you are perceived. Naturally, the services you render will also play a role, so try to go above and beyond to meet and exceed customer expectations. This is the best way to motivate customers to share positive reviews.
Ask for Immediate Review
You need to strike while the iron is hot, when your stellar service is still fresh in the minds of customers and their level of satisfaction provides the motivation needed to take time out of their busy day to fill out a survey or write a review. So request a review immediately following your service (as you’re leaving or at least same day), and send a follow-up reminder within a few days if no review has been submitted.
Don’t be embarrassed – most people understand the importance and weight of online reviews these days. So ask if customers are willing to publicly post a review or see if they’re willing to allow you to contact them via email, text, or social media.
Make Reviewing Easy
The easiest way to get a review is if customers need only push a button. For this reason, building a contact list that allows you to invite reviews via email, text, or social media is ideal. If customers are hesitant to give you this contact information or follow you on social media, have review information handy to give them at the conclusion of your work.
Respond to All Reviewse
Whether reviews are positive or negative, they are an opportunity to communicate with customers and show viewers that you care what your clients think. When you respond to positive reviews, you reinforce relationships. Responding to negative reviews gives you a chance to address complaints and perhaps turn negative sentiments into positive ones.Back to blog