SEO Part 3: How To Get Good Online Reviews
Today’s buyers are turning towards online reviews more and more. They are becoming more powerful than social media signals and direct marketing messages. This is largely due to the fact that people like to hear what a product or company is like from those who have actually interacted with them. To get ahead in the search engines and with customers, you need to have good online reviews. Getting these is not necessarily as hard as you might think. All it takes is a little know-how and some creativity. Here are the top 6 ways you can generate good reviews for your business: Promote your review site presence offline Generating reviews does not happen entirely online. If you have a brick and mortar business, you need to promote your presence on online review sites. You can do this with sites like Yelp, TripAdvisor, and Foursquare by requesting stickers, certificates, and even window clings. Once you get them, just place them prominently at your place of business. That way those who come will see where they can go to leave you a review. It is remarkably effective. You should also consider listing where people can leave reviews on your brochures and business cards. Promote your review site presence in your newsletters/emails If you send out emails or newsletters you can add a review request link at the bottom. That makes it easy for people to head over to leave you a positive review. They know exactly where to go without having to hunt around online. You can find email marketing providers that offer tools that allow you to create customized email templates that include places for these types of links. This makes it much more likely for people to take the time to leave the review that you need. Make use of review request tools Just as email marketing companies have email templates for you to use, so do some industry-specific review sites. These tools make it easier than ever for people to leave you reviews. Edmunds, for example, has Review Accelerator and TripAdvisor has Review Express. Increase your social media engagement If you have a strong community on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram be sure to leave a link to where customers can leave a review on your profile page. As with most of the points on this list, the easier you can make finding the review link the more likely people are to leave you a review. Give people perks Special perks or discounts are a great way to score a great review. Let’s say you have a hotel. Give someone a free room upgrade during the slow season. That said, be careful when providing incentives as most rating websites forbid incentives for ratings. Instead, provide special incentives and request that if they enjoyed the service or the special, that they might leave a review. Then be sure they know where to leave you a review. Chances are good the review you get is going to be about how awesome their experience was at your hotel. Offer raffles, contests, and sweepstakes Raffles, sweepstakes, and contests are a powerful way to promote your presence and generate great reviews. Nothing makes people happier than winning something free, which can mean in turn, that the winner is more likely to leave you a good review. You can even have the contest involve the reviews themselves. For example, you can have a monthly prize given out to a random reviewer. This kind of incentive is a good way to get people to leave you that review. As you can see there are some creative ways for you to drum up those good reviews. It is simply a matter of making it as simple and worthwhile as possible to your customers. Put these tips to use and watch the reviews pour in.