It’s rare that consumers make a blind purchase in this day and age without going through several online reviews first. In 2016 alone, almost 90% of shoppers read at least one review before making a purchase. This means that the vast majority of consumers do their own research to determine if the products/services are worth their hard-earned money.
Online reviews are crucial for any online business because it speaks volumes about the quality of what you’re offering. No matter what industry you’re in, having a positive online presence offers plenty of benefits that’ll help elevate your brand from the rest of the competition. Today we’re here to discuss why online reviews are important for your business and how it can help optimize customer experience to further grow your brand.
How online reviews can impact your online business
- It drives your sales numbers.
It’s kinda hard to tell if a product/service is of good value when you look at it from a consumer standpoint. You’re mostly relying on the images and product information to see if what you’re buying is actually worth it. Consumers are more likely to make a purchase if they know the product works exactly as advertised and this comes in the form of online reviews.
Positive reviews drives purchases by encouraging potential customers to buy the product. Knowing that other people had a satisfactory experience with the product — even if they’re total strangers, can convince people to buy into what you’re offering. Online reviews are one of the biggest forms of social proof and having positive reviews are a testament to how good your products/services are.
- It helps increase your brand visibility.
Most consumers today use search engines like Google and Bing to look up things they want to buy. These search engines use complex algorithms to display the top websites in the search engine results page (SERPS). The higher the ranking, the more potential website visits you’ll have. One way to achieve this is by earning positive reviews. Search engines prioritize valuable content and having positive reviews mean that you’ll be more likely to get recommended by Google.
Positive reviews signify that your brand is reliable and this can help establish your online presence and increase your brand visibility. When search engines index content, your website will appear first and it’ll be a huge boost to your lead generation as well as your sales.
- It makes your business look trustworthy.
The reason why big-name brands like Nike and Adidas are successful is because their brand is associated with credibility. Consumers know they’ll always get a quality product each time they make a purchase from these brands. Having positive online reviews makes your business look more trustworthy and is a very powerful tool when building your corporate identity.
In general, consumers look for around 4 stars or more when deciding for a product. Anything below that and they might change their minds. This leaves you with a small margin of error to convert traffic into sales. You have to be reliable and you must be able to meet your target audience’s wants and needs to garner positive reviews.
Once you’re able to earn the trust of your consumers, it’ll be a lot easier to sell your products/services because people know you can deliver according to their expectations.
- It expands the conversation about your brand.
Back in the day, word of mouth is an effective marketing strategy that got people interested in your brand. When someone likes a particular product, they mention it to their family and friends and they pass it on to other people as well. This still holds true today and is very important when establishing your brand image.
Think about how a positive review can spread around quickly, especially in today’s world where you have social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. People can vouch for your brand through these channels and it has the potential to spread like wildfire, helping your brand reach hundreds if not thousands of interested consumers.
Satisfied customers are more likely to share their thoughts and experiences about your brand to other people and expand the conversation.
- It makes it easier for your consumers to decide.
Most of the consumers are reluctant to purchase a product if it doesn’t have enough positive reviews. They aren’t willing to take the unnecessary risk of not knowing whether the product is good or not. Having positive reviews makes it easier for them to decide when taking a look at your products/services because other people are advertising your business as a great one.
By focusing on getting quality reviews, you’re essentially convincing potential customers to buy your products. They don’t have to think twice about buying your brand because other people have strong recommendations about your business.
- It gives you an open line to your consumers.
Most consumers today expect businesses to respond to their queries and comments. Not only do online reviews serve as brand boosters, but it also acts as a forum for you to be straightforward with your consumers. You can address poor reviews right away and you can reinforce positive ones by giving promotions or discount codes. As much as good reviews are valuable, the negative ones are important as well. This allows you to identify problem areas within your brand and address it immediately to meet the needs and expectations of you consumers. The genuine responses and the friendly open-feedback appearance shows that you high value customer experience. This care and consideration can go a long way towards building a reputable brand image that can work wonders for your business.
- It improves your customer service
A good customer service is what enhances the buying experience of your consumers. When customers are treated as an individual and not just a source of profit, they are more likely to be satisfied with your products/services. Online reviews allow you to do just that by making things right whenever they have a bad experience. Attending to the needs and concerns of your customers will help add to the credibility of your brand as a whole.
Taking the extra steps to ensure customer satisfaction will pay dividends in the long run. Offer a refund, exchange, or free products/services to your customers when they have a negative experience. Yeah you might lose some money, but this helps foster customer loyalty which more than makes up for it. Remember, it’s the exceptional customer service that differentiates successful brands from the mediocre ones..
How to get good reviews
The following tips will help you achieve good reviews for your business. Consider these key factors to achieve positive ratings:
- Listen to the feedback of your consumers.
- Offer exceptional customer service.
- Pay attention to the quality of your products/services.
- Take the time to respond to comments — even the negative ones.
- Ask how you can improve the buying experience of your customers.
Highlight key that need improvement and strive to be consistent throughout each one to get good reviews.
Online reviews are a crucial part of a successful business because it’s what makes or breaks sales and profit. If you can gather consistently positive ratings, expect your brand to continue growing and reach a whole new audience you’ve never reached before. Furthermore, Google reviews can help to strengthen your online presence in terms of search engine optimization (SEO) and should be an intricate element of any campaign you run moving forwards.