Local businesses should always prioritize their search presence. After all, you want people to find your business. This allows you to stay ahead of your competition as well as attract and convert new customers. There are a few different strategies to target when focusing on local search, and one of the most important strategies of a successful local SEO campaign is getting more Google reviews. In this article, we will walk you through 11 different strategies for how you can increase Google reviews for your business.
Why are Google Reviews Important?
If you own a business, you know just how important customer reviews are to your success. Good reviews can help make that small bit of difference when customers choose to spend their money on your products and services. They not only help your business reputation, but they can make a difference if your listing is at the top or bottom of the search results.
As Google dominates online searches by around 70%, it’s likely your potential customers will be using it to find businesses like yours. Naturally, you should want to put your business information and success in front of your audience where you know they can see them. Increasing Google reviews for your business needs to be a priority in your marketing strategy. If your customer searches for a business in your industry and clicks on your listing, you want them to immediately see your star rating and genuine, positive reviews from your customers. Bad star ratings can really affect whether or not a potential customer will choose your business. If you have a good rating, then users are more likely to click your website, learn more about your services to potentially make a purchase, and in turn increase your ROI.
Do Google Reviews Help SEO?
Yes, reviews help local SEO! As most businesses are being found through search engines online, you can stand out from your local competition when you dominate your online reviews. Having reviews on your business listing may seem small, but they can be the thing that helps your website rank above your competition when users are searching for businesses in your industry.
Online reviews are one of the most important ranking factors for both national and local SEO, alongside optimizing your Google My Business profile and link building. However, don’t be completely discouraged if you have a few negative reviews. Although having a high star rating with a majority of positive reviews needs to be your goal, think about when you read through reviews on Google. Isn’t it more trusting when you see a mix of some negative with mostly positive? In fact, some studies show it’s important to have a mix of both good and bad reviews on your listing, and you can drop in local pack positions when you remove all your negative reviews.
Having a positive star rating can enhance the user experience of your website by being featured in the organic search result. It saves users time by showing them the information they are looking for up front. And having positive star ratings in your organic search result has a direct influence on your keyword positioning by adding structured data or schema markup to the page that pulls in the reviews into the SERP.
Reviews help to boost your E-A-T on Google and other search engines: expertise, authority, and trust. With good E-A-T, you build a credible reputation with your customers. When local businesses don’t meet these expectations, it puts you at risk to be pushed further down the SERP. When you build a strong E-A-T with the help of improving Google reviews and a strong star rating, it can increase your site visits and click through rates.
Let’s go over these 11 ways you can get more Google reviews for your business and start seeing better results
11 Ways to Get More Google Reviews for Your Business
1. Ask Your Customers and Clients for a Review
A great way to increase your online reviews and get feedback is to simply ask for it from your satisfied customers. Whether you have interactions with your customers online or in person, you can always ask directly for reviews after positive transactions or even if you have monthly calls. Make sure to be clear and explain where and how to leave a Google review.
2. Follow Up with Customers After Asking for Reviews
Don’t be afraid to follow up with your customers via email after asking for reviews. Be personal and let them know why their feedback is important. Make sure to include the direct link to your Google reviews and express your appreciation. And of course, thank them for being a valued customer and for taking the time to leave their feedback.
3. Google Review Email Campaign
Email marketing is a powerful and effective tool for your strategy. If you already are running email campaigns for your business, consider creating a review email campaign. Make the process easy for your customers and provide a direct link to your Google reviews page. Be clear when asking for reviews, and even target customers you know have had positive experiences with your business. Happy customers will leave good reviews!
4. Ask for Google Reviews Using Your Social Media
Social media is a great marketing tool businesses can use to reach their audience. Create a social post asking your followers to leave reviews, providing a link to your Google profile. Make it easy for them to leave feedback. You can even attach a photo of one of your positive Google reviews and ask for them to share their own experience.
5. Link to Your Google Reviews Page on Your Website
Get more Google reviews by creating a dedicated page on your website that links directly to your Google My Business profile. Make sure this page is easy to find and to access on your homepage. Populate your best reviews here so when customers click the link to your profile, they can see other great feedback.
6. Calls to Action on Your Website in Your Footer
In addition to having a dedicated page, create a call to action on your website, such as in the footer. Providing multiple options on your page for reviews is always a great way to increase your chances of a customer to both help direct them to the right link, as well as organically receiving reviews from customers.
7. Link to Your Reviews Page in Your Email Signature
Your email signature is a great place to add a link to your Google reviews. It’s a more organic way to ask without specifically asking for them. As you communicate with your customers and they have a positive experience, they can easily click the link to leave their immediate feedback.
8. Ask Your Partners and Vendors for Reviews
These are positive, trusted relationships that you have already established. Although they aren’t customers, they work directly with you and can still leave great feedback about their experience working with you. Your vendors and partners know the importance of good reviews. You can also leave reviews for them, in return!
9. Have a Well Optimized Profile and Presence
Your Google My Business listing should already be well optimized to help you rank on Google, but it’s also extremely important for your customers, as well. Make sure your business information is up to date and accurate. Have relevant and good quality photos of your business, products, and services. If your customers search for your listing and can’t discern if it’s your business or not, then you are not meeting the standards for Google or for your business. Always put your best foot forward online.
10. Utilize Review Generation Tools
This may not be the best option for every business, but if you have the budget, there are several great tools to consider that can help streamline processes and increase the number of reviews you receive from happy customers.
11. ‘Leave a Google Review Card’ for In-Person Interactions with Customers
You may interact with your customers in person more than you do online. If that’s the case, creating a ‘leave a Google review’ card to hand to customers after a transaction or services is a great offline way to solicit reviews. Ask them for their feedback, include the link and your business contact information, and even direction on how to leave a review.
Increase Your Google Reviews to Help Your Business Grow
Consumers trust online reviews and do take them into consideration before making a purchase or taking an action on your website. For that reason, you should always be monitoring, responding, and actively engaging with your online reviews. And Google reviews are not only important for your brand reputation, but it is proven to benefit your overall SEO strategy. So, if you’re trying to increase your positioning, you need to make it a priority in your strategy to get more Google reviews.
Boostability can help you with small business SEO services. Let us help you get started today!