If your business isn’t already taking advantage of this easy and effective marketing tool, here are just a few reasons why obtaining reviews/testimonials should be a number one priority for increasing your marketing efforts. It’s free, and it’s honest marketing that speaks for itself.
1.Online Reviews Contribute to Referral Business: While online referrals may not produce instant business, this can quickly change. Online purchasing is at an all-time high, and while most people refer to their family and friends initially for recommendations, studies reveal that even reviews written by strangers can make a significant impact on one’s purchasing decision.
2. Online Endorsement Help You Appear Tech Savvy: In several situations, you may find that clients are requesting to review additional testimonials, regardless of whether or not they’ve already read positive reviews. While 5 years ago, you may have provided a typed list of references to this person, now you can simply direct them to your LinkedIN or Yelp profile where they can read the latest reviews. Today’s technological advancements allow for immediate and convenient answers, so why not get the most of it for your business? It shows your professionalism, and the fact that you are keeping up to date with online advancements.
3. Online Reputation is Crucial: At the end of the day, most business owners know that there are going to be customers who aren’t please with their service and/or product. This is pretty typical for businesses of all sizes, at some point or another. While you can’t control negative feedback from being posted, you can decrease the impact it may have on your business, by replying to their comment right away with a positive reinforcement. It shows readers you care enough to address the issue, plus a variety of reviews may encourage consumers to conduct more research instead of immediately skipping over you as an option.
Requesting reviews will vary depending on your particular industry and target market; however, for the most part you can count on these three resources as a starting point:
Yelp: Yelp is a great place to be for any local business. Studies show that 4 out of 5 Yelp users will visit the website when they are prepared to make a purchase; not to mention, there are currently over 39 million local reviews! Likely, many of your potential customers are already using Yelp regularly, so requesting a testimonial from them shouldn’t be a major problem.
LinkedIn.com: LinkedIn is a powerful online networking site for businesses. Profiles are always ranked high in Google searches, which means when consumers are doing their online research, your LinkedIn profile is more likely to appear near the top of the site. Your LinkedIn profile has a specific spot where recommendations can be submitted. These recommendations will be shown on your profile, as well as on the profile of the individual who provided it. This expands your reach automatically, as even individuals outside of your direct network can read your customer experiences.
Houzz.com: Houzz is a sharing website focused on home design, construction, and home remodeling. Profiles can be created for free, and they offer an excellent way to highlight your work and share testimonials from satisfied customers.