Do you still think reviews are just for movies and restaurants? Thanks to social media, everyone’s a critic these days. Consumers can read and write reviews for everything, from auto repair shops to veterinarians, on popular sites such as Yelp, Google My Business, and Angie’s List.
Online reviews can help shape your digital marketing program, because they show you where your customers are going to get information and share opinions. Here are three more reasons why leveraging reviews can help you build your brand and convert prospective buyers.
Have you ever noticed how certain movies can be savaged by critics, yet still generate hundreds of millions of dollars in ticket sales? People are influenced by word-of-mouth recommendations far more than by the comments and opinions of professional reviewers. A survey of online consumers reveals more than 83 percent trust user reviews over critic reviews. People like to feel like they belong; conforming to majority opinion validates their buying decisions.
Surprisingly, even negative reviews can increase trust in a brand or business. Consumers are savvy enough to know that no business, regardless of how great it is, will receive unanimously positive reviews. The occasional negative review reassures readers that the opinions are on the up-and-up. They’re also a great way for you to spot areas in your business that need improvement.
2. Reviews Can Improve Search Engine Rankings
Does your Digital marketing plan include a forum for reviews on your website? Every time a new review is posted, it boosts the amount of unique product related content available on your site. In turn, search engines assign your site greater relevance and authority, resulting in an improvement in search engine rankings.
Reviews don’t have to be on your website to influence your search engine visibility, though. Google’s local search algorithm includes data from many of the top third-party review sites. Reviews on these sites tend to be for entire companies, rather than individual products or services. This type of review from a third-party site may actually have a more significant effect on your rankings than would product-based reviews.
3. Using Reviews to Increase Customer Engagement
Reviews, whether on your site, or a third-party platform, can become ideal places to create a online community. This sort of gathering place offers consumers an opportunity to interact with you, as well as with other users. Posting a review creates a sense of connection between customers and your company. This connection may lead to a deep loyalty, transforming first-time customers into repeat customers, and creating enthusiastic advocates for your product or service.
Effective digital marketing means staying on top of what people are saying about your company online. Rep 24/7 can monitor reviews and manage your online reputation, so you’re free to handle the business of selling. Contact us for more information.