Why do you need to care whether or not your customers leave any reviews? For one thing, nearly 85% of people view online reviews as having the same value as personal recommendations. What is more, average sales are 30% higher with businesses that offer plenty of customer reviews. More sales and greater authority in your specific niche – just two reasons why you need reviews in your business life.
As for how this could happen, encouraging more customer reviews doesn’t need to be as difficult as you may think. Most customers usually can’t wait to share their views – it is simply a case of providing them with every opportunity to do so.
Use a wide range of review sites
For instance, not all customers who leave reviews on Yelp are fans of Google or OpenTable. And the same applies in reverse. If you want to receive as many customer reviews as possible, you will need to appear on as many review platforms as you can. You will then be able to scrape as many of them as you like and present them anywhere you see fit.
Show your customers how
Don’t just make the assumption that all your customers instinctively know where and how to leave a review. Instead, it is worth offering instructions from start to finish. What is more, it is also important to make it as simple as possible for customer reviews to be submitted. If you make it mandatory to fill in 30 boxes and answer half a dozen questions, you will struggle. Use a simple star rating and comment box and they will be far more likely to complete the whole process.
Make it clear to your customers that you are against fake reviews and have no intention of ever tolerating them. You can also instil trust by posting negative or neutral reviews alongside your more positive reviews. No company has ever had 100% positive reviews – if you hide the truth, your customers will find it difficult to trust you.
Respond and reply
Get it right with negative reviews and they can have even stronger impact than your positive reviews. If you manage to make it clear that you always take negative feedback very seriously, you will be identified as a company that actually cares. This is why it is important to reply to all customer reviews you receive – not just the ones you pick and see as worthy.
Make use of social media
Remember that for millions of consumers all over the world, social media has become the leading platform for interaction and customer support with businesses. Receiving customer reviews via a social media platform could be a great way of collecting social proof to be used where, when and how you see fit. Once again the key lies in having a proactive approach.
Give power to customers
Last but not least, when you turn a customer into your brand ambassador they are inherently more likely to spread the good word. The idea is that you get in touch with your customers directly, show them how important they are and ask them to submit their feedback. This is a great way of building social proof and reviews and you are also guaranteed to learn some important things about your business.