There are many factors that affect Google rankings in local search results. Of the 10 or so components with the greatest importance, most businesses owners would probably say customer reviews are the toughest nut to crack.
It is no easy task to motivate customers –- even the ones that you have completely wowed with your amazing services – to submit reviews. Not many people are going to be willing to login to their Google account –- if they even have one –- just to do you the favor of commenting on their experience. So, what can you do to get more Google reviews?
Because boosting the frequency of reviews can seem so daunting, most businesses just sit back and hope for the best. We are here to tell you that reviews are too important to ignore or be passive about. You need to actively inspire your customers to want to leave positive feedback, and we are going to give you some advice on how to do just that.
Here are some tips to help local business owners get more Google reviews and, just as importantly, more 5-star reviews.
Make it Easy for Them
Before you start reaching out to people, you need to create instructions that will help them understand how to give feedback. Some of your customers will be review newbies and will need you to hold their hand. Using this awesome review instruction template, you can print instructions that are customized to your business. And it’s free!
Reach Out to Your Biggest Fans
Now that you have instructions, it’s time to find reviewers. If you already have satisfied customers who are interacting with you on social media, that’s an easy win. Also, you can search for mentions of your brand name from around the web – maybe someone liked your service so much that they mentioned it on their personal blog.
In either case, you simply contact the customer and ask them for a review. Send them a file of the customized step-by-step instructions in case they need a little help. You may need to follow up once or twice to get them to act. Don’t be too pushy, but don’t be afraid to ask for something that can make a huge difference for your business.
Use Your Email List
Sending out a message to the customers on your email list will help you boost your number of reviews. Again, include the instructions, and just be honest about how much reviews mean to you. You can thank them for their loyalty and encourage them to share the experience they had with your business.
Make it a Contest
You can offer your customers a reward in exchange for their feedback. This isn’t a bribe, but you do have to be careful with your promises or your demands. Going too far could get you in trouble with Google. Examples of contests that wouldn’t draw the ire of Google would be:
- Tell customers they enter a raffle for a $50 gift card if they provide feedback on what they like most about your company.
- Offer a free incentive. For restaurants, it could be a free dessert.
During any contest or giveaway to get reviews, your instruction handout should always be close by. That document is your polite way to say, “If we made you happy, thank us by leaving a review.”
Get Help from Local Marketing Experts
If you want more tips and suggestions on how to earn reviews, or you need a marketing team to help you dominate local search results, you need to contact 1bg.Call 1bg at 855-793-7855 to discuss local online marketing strategies that can help your business grow!