Online reviews can make or break your business. Here’s why you should care:
It should be obvious to any business owner that reviews are important. A restaurant with good reviews will get more sales than one with no reviews at all. A restaurant flooded with bad reviews is almost always a death sentence. The same can be said for any business. However, reviews can do so much more than persuade or dissuade a potential customer from trying out your services. What many business owners don’t realize is that good reviews aren’t just a marketing tool, but they can also become an amazing boost for your SEO endeavors. Having numerous reviews on trusted sites will improve your page ranking. This shows search engines you are a legitimate company and more importantly, that people like what you’re doing. However, not all review services are created equal. Here’s what you need to know about three major review sites.
Yelp – Yelp is the number one review site for restaurants, hotels, clubs, and just about anything entertainment or spa-related. It’s also one of the most cutthroat. Companies can’t pay or beg customers to post positive reviews, and though it happens, many businesses suspected of this are caught and banned from Yelp.
Yelp reviews hold a lot of clout, offer good backlinks for struggling businesses, and add legitimacy to a company. However, there is a dark side to Yelp. Yelp was accused of changing reviews for paid advertisers to paint businesses in a better light. As a business, organic feedback from real customers is always better than insincere fluff you paid for.
Facebook – Facebook is big. Like, really big. As in, it’s the largest social media platform in the world. It’s so powerful that Google even uses Facebook reviews and links in its algorithm in several ways. Facebook is excellent for reviews for almost any business and is viewed as a better platform for interacting with your clientele.
Facebook feedback is like a conversation rather than having someone talk about you behind your back. The cool thing about Facebook reviews is that they give businesses the most realistic reviews possible. Because of individual profiles, there’s an added level of transparency with Facebook that let you see what people are saying about your business, and even helps to create a more intimate conversation. The Facebook platform also allows businesses to deal with complaints directly. If you’re not using Facebook to it’s fullest, you’re missing out.
Google Pages – Also known as Google Places, Google Plus, or Google Business. Whatever you want to call it, the fact is that there is no better way to supercharge your search engine rankings than having an excellent Google Page for your business. Just having one gives you a turbo boost in SEO results thanks to the fact that Google displays location-specific results for people searching for businesses.
What makes Google Pages reviews even more important for business owners is that highly rated businesses get placed rapidly at the top of search results. For business owners, this means more attention from possible clients and an easier to find company in the world’s biggest directory.
You can never underestimate the power of reviews. You should always strive for great ones and smooth out problems before they turn into a PR problem. Provide a great service that people like and the good reviews will follow in no time.