Brand awareness comes in many forms – blogs, online advertisements, social media, and even smartphone apps. An area gaining momentum is the review site. With customers and clients doing their research before sealing the deal, review sites are increasingly becoming a more important piece to a brand strategy.
Of course, review sites are a double-edged sword for organizations. There is always the risk for negative feedback. Despite this, review sites can ultimately be a beneficial and inexpensive brand marketing. For example, freelance copywriters and freelance graphic designers on say UpWork, will particularly benefit from client reviews. Much of their business is generated through word of mouth. Similarly, direct hire staffing companies and creative staffing companies will benefit from positive reviews from former candidates and clients. We have your guide to maintaining review site, and why they matter for your business.
Why Maintain Your Review Sites?
Stellar online reviews can be an incredibly effective way to attract new business and build a strong customer base. It’s so important not to overlook this easy and effective brand marketing tool. HR Managers are encouraged to sign their company up with a review site and play close attention to what customers are saying. Still not convinced that review sites need your time? Check out some additional benefits of maintaining review sites:
1. More Customers
“How important are they really?”
“Can a couple of negative reviews really sink the ship?”
The answer is yes. Review sites are important and can affect company’s reputation and bottom line. The general consensus of multiple studies point to the fact that a surprisingly high number of consumers base purchasing decisions on online company and product reviews. Reevo, an organization that deals specifically with reviews, conducted a survey which found that 88 percent of customers will check review sites before making a decision.
“88% of customers will check review sites before making a decision.”
This number isn’t all that surprising. People tend to trust individuals who have no vested interest in a company to give them a more realistic review. So much so that a Nielsen survey which found that up to 70 percent of customers trust the opinions of strangers who have posted a review online.
2. Improved Search Engine Optimization
Review sites also play a role in search engine results for a business, increasing visibility. Major search engines, such as Google and Bing, will scan reviews for company names. Organizations mentioned more frequently will subsequently place higher in the search engine results pages.
Fun fact: Five or more reviews on Google+ will allow viewers to see an over-all rating within your Google search listing.
3. More Insight Into Services Provided
Reviews, both positive and negative, are a fantastic and easy way to find out customers’ opinions. You will gather an understanding of what is working, what is not, and where to make improvements. The beauty of online reviews is that customers will likely be far more honest than if you asked them in person.
Tips for Maintaining Your Review Sites
Customers are coming in with feedback. No review should go unanswered. Whether the feedback is positive or negative, respond, and answer accordingly. Many organizations will develop a review management system for their company, by monitoring the appropriate review sites for the business. Check out our list of tips for review site management below:
1. Take Charge
Review sites, such as Yelp, permit companies to take charge of their business review pages, Headway Capital explained. This is the first and arguably most important step of review site management, as it not only indicates to customers that your business takes reviews seriously, but it also facilitates communication with patrons more effectively.
2. Be Present
Some review sites will allow organizations to respond on reviews and begin conversations with clients. Responding to reviews and engaging with the customers is a mandatory step in your strategy. Certainly, what may initially seem like a difficult situation can be turned on its head to produce a positive outcome. Don’t ignore the positive reviews. Reply to as many as possible with a sincere and tailor the message. Going through this step and personalizing your response to the review will send a positive message to all customers and clients. You do not want to irritate customers with a stock response that is used for every decent review. Take the time to respond, just as your customer has with their review.
3. Promote Review Pages
By encouraging customers to make reviews, your organization appears more interactive and open to criticism. Use your organization’s website and social media pages to link customers to the best places where they can leave reviews.
4. Don’t Forget Social Media
Speaking of social media, don’t neglect Facebook and Twitter when it comes to customer reviews. Countless customers will avoid review websites and instead opt to post reviews, messages and complaints on social media sites. Be sure to read the messages and interact when possible. The reasoning is the same as above – an organization that cares about its customers’ opinions will be regarded more favorably by the public.