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How often have you asked your clients to write a review about your business?

According to Bright Local, 93% of consumers used the internet to find a business location in 2022. This could have been because of the Covid pandemic, and everyone staying inside, but following the popularity of technology and the internet over the last few decades, online reviews are becoming more popular.

It was found that the top five industries where consumers are most likely to read reviews are : 1) Healthcare, 2) Automotive Services, 3) Service Businesses/Tradespeople. These are the industries where you are buying into a service and sometimes, for example Medical, it’s difficult to return that service. People want to ensure they are choosing the right business to pay. Did you know only 48% of consumers would consider using a business with fewer than 4 stars in their reviews? This shows you need to ensure the majority of your reviews are positive.

One of the most popular ways of reviewing a business is Google My Business. Google dominates the search engine market, maintaining an 85% market share as of March 2023, which shows the importance of claiming your Google My Business listing and ensuring it is kept up to date. An average local business’ Google My Business listing is viewed 1,260 times each month, which means those negative reviews can have a big impact. However 94% of consumers say that positive reviews make them more likely to use a business. With the UK’s current situation, people want to ensure they are making the best decision about where to go and what to do, so looking at reviews and ensuring the business is successful makes a big difference.

‘So how do I get these reviews?’ Good question. There’s never an easy way to ask someone to review your business, you just have to do it. But a survey by Bright Local found that depending on how the customer has to review the business makes a difference, they’re more likely to reply to an email with a testimonial, compared to answering a 20 question survey. 72% of those asked to write a review went on to do so, but it’s worth noting that if customers have received multiple requests for reviews then they won’t review every time. Reviews don’t all have to be online via Google My Business. Don’t be afraid to be inventive! IKEA, for example, has tablets placed at the exit that people can tap from 1-5 depending on their satisfaction and can add a comment if they want to. On Tesco’s self-serve tills you can also tap on the emoji that best describes your visit. It’s simple, but effective. These conglomerates can use this real time data to see how they are doing and what to improve. The top ways to get a review are through the following channels: email, in person, on receipt, social media, over phone, SMS, business card, device in business location, chatbot

Although we don’t suggest incentives in response to reviews. This is against many review sites guidelines – you don’t want to get in Google’s bad books. You can also seem untrustworthy if you are bribing people to review your business.

But the process doesn’t finish there. A survey by Bright Local found that 88% of consumers are likely to use a business if they can see the business owner responds to all reviews, whether positive or negative. Customers like to think they are listened to, and this can only be proved if you respond to their reviews. 

This shows the importance of encouraging customers to review your business. If you do have negative reviews, also respond to them publicly. 70% of customers are more likely to use a business that responds to negative reviews. Customers always want to see that the business cares.

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