How online reviews can impact your business

As a business owner, customer feedback can be an important part of how you run your business. Positive reviews and testimonials make your business look great and stand out in the eyes of potential prospects, but how do we make that impact online? Today’s consumers are increasingly relying on online reviews to make decisions about the companies they work with. In fact:

  • 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations
  • 92% of buyers regularly or occasionally rely on reviews when making a local buying decision
  • 49% of consumers need at least a four-star rating before they choose to use a business

Building positive online reviews of your business is a great way to offer third-party validation that your company will deliver quality products or services, and that your customers are happy and willing to talk about it. Reviews not only keep existing customers satisfied, but also help hesitant customers gain a better understanding of what to expect when using a business.

The other major benefit of driving online reviews is the SEO impact. Google is more likely to rank sites higher based on positive reviews and a consistent volume of new reviews. With Google’s local search results, often the first thing that shows up about your business is your Google My Business profile, a map to your location, and your total review volume and ranking. Online customer reviews are a strong signal to search engines, which communicates trustworthiness and authority.

While there are hundreds of sites where customers can review your business, two other high profile sites that make the biggest impact are Facebook and Yelp. Both allow customers to review your business and display those results on your profile in a highly impactful way. With the Internet so easily accessible, consumers are doing their research before they buy anything. They use all the outlets they can in order to see what others experienced. Not only do people view the internet as their first source of information, but also they trust what it tells them, and make decisions based on what they find online.

Getting reviews on a regular basis takes a proactive and committed approach if you are going to generate them authentically and consistently. Consumers are faced with many different choices to serve their needs in today’s day and age, and it is important for businesses to stand apart from their competition.