Why You Need to Focus on Your Online Reviews

Turn to your online reviews to learn what customers are saying about you. We can help with your online reputation management.

Most customers see enormous value in online reviews.  They are personal recommendations for past clients and show future clients that your business is one they should do business with because you are reputable and trustworthy. Most companies overlook the value of reputation management.

Reputation management is simply monitoring what people are saying about your business online.  But what many do not know is that you can influence what is being said about you online and get better results. We do not condone buying online reviews, this is dishonest and could lead to algorithms like the one Google uses to hurt your rankings with them.

Let’s discuss how to manage your reviews to improve them.

Why Does Reputation Management Matter

Today, everyone searches online, and those search results impact buying decisions. It will affect online transactions, but also for those visiting a brick-and-mortar location because if they do their online research to determine where to buy you might not get the customer. It is shown that 91 percent of 18-34-year-olds trust online reviews as much as they trust personal recommendations. Furthermore, 93 percent of all consumers say that online reviews have impacted their purchasing decisions. You can then know that your customers are doing their research before coming to you for your products or services. So are you listening to what your customers are saying?

How to hear what your customers are saying

To hear your customer reviews, you need to claim your online business listings, such as Google My Business, Facebook, and Yelp. Many industries have different review websites that should be monitored. You need to take a little time and find those review sites that apply to your business and claim your listings.

Once you do this you will, in most cases, get a notification each time someone reviews your business. Now you are equipped to respond to those reviews and keep track of trends and learn where you might need to improve your business.

Encouraging Customer Reviews

Improving your online reputation means getting more real customer reviews of your products and services. It can be surprising how this simple step can improve your customer relationships by showing them how much you care.

Let’s look at how you can get more customers to provide online reviews about your business.

  • Make sure that you enable online reviews so that customers can share their thoughts. If you have reviews turned off on sites like Facebook, you can’t receive this online praise and constructive feedback.
  • Just ask face-to-face. When you speak with them on the phone or video conference, ask that they leave you a review. Let them know how much their opinions matter.
  • Follow-up with an email a few days after the customer has made a purchase.
  • Customers like to talk about the companies that provide an outstanding experience and work hard for them. If that is you, then your customers are more likely to share their feedback online, telling others about the great experience they had with you and your business.

How To Handle any Negative Reviews

The most challenging aspect of reputation management and the biggest reason why companies ignore their online reviews is having to read a negative review. In a world where people tend to overreact and get nasty, there are times where a review can be absurd and just a way for an angry or disgruntled customer to lash out. But most times these reviews provide insights you wouldn’t know about otherwise.

A polite response to a negative review, along with an invitation to further the discussion offline, can significantly improve things from that negative review. Not responding to that negative review can be a sign for potential customers that you just don’t care about your customers’ thoughts and feelings.

Negative reviews can be as important as positive ones because they’ll display your true character.

If all of this seems overwhelming, and you want an easier way to improve your online reputation, contact aha! Our reputation management services have helped many companies improve their ratings to earn more customers.