There are always two sides to every story. And businesses will always have that one client and one review that can change everything. One mention of your business in Yelp can mean anger, frustration or despair.
In today’s world, Yelp can highly manipulate your business for better or for worse. This popular review community can have an unprecedented amount of power to consumers if you don’t have the proper strategy. Your Yelp profile may be filled with random complaints when it shouldn’t be. Your business will be misrepresented. Majority of your clients may feel positive about you but those bad reviews will break you.
Take charge of review management strategy and use these review communities to your advantage. Start generating more business by building up a reservoir of authentic 4 and 5-star reviews from happy customers.
You may find it surprising but 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. If you are committed to improving their online reviews then here is a 5-star blueprint that you may use.
Your business on all review sites should be claimed
Get the distinct advantage by claiming your business on major platforms like Yelp and Google Reviews and that of your industry’s niche review sites. It is different for every industry where Avvo is for Lawyers, ZocDoc and Healthgrades for doctors and so on. You should always keep updated by doing a quick search of top review sites in your industry. It will also be helpful to see what review platforms pop up when you Google your competitors.
The right software solution should always be found
Find out what is the best software solution for all your needs. It is important to make sure though that whatever software it is, it should be capable to:
- Have one consolidated feed or dashboard that can monitor and track all your top review sites
- Ask clients for reviews on all the top review sites you care about
- Before asking for reviews, a pre-screening of your customers for their level of satisfaction will be done
- Customer messaging and branding interaction will be maintained with full control
- CRM integration should be seamless to be able to send review requests to the right customers at the right times
Customers will make reviewing a cinch
There are a number of things you can do to make this easy:
- Your business locations should be claimed in all major review platforms. Your customers can still give you a review via Google or Facebook if they don’t have a Yelp account.
- In your email signature, you can add a link to your business listing
- Place “FInd us on Yelp” on your sign in the window, if you don’t have a physical store. Do the same for other review platforms.
- Place a Yelp badge on your website in the absence of a physical store. Do the same for other review platforms.
Basically, one of the fastest and most effective ways to get reviews from customers is just to ask them literally. Yelp have terms and conditions that discourage this but there are many other review platforms that go by this.
Ask happy customers to give you reviews
To get reviews, you have to ask for it. Not everyone has the time to manually send emails and in-person requests that is why we have software solutions. This will provide a long-term and scalable solution.
A good review management software is one that allows you to direct your customers via email to the review platform(s) of your choice.this is a pre numbers game where only a percentage of customers will review. The more that you will get if the more that you will ask.
Be like a pro in responding to reviews
You cannot control the feelings of your customers towards your business. Not everytime is a positive and a good experience. But one thing that you can control is the way that you respond to them.
It is essential to always respond no matter what. People are people. They will say things. Everybody needs to be respected and heard. Let them know that their input matters by a quick response. Who knows what this can do. Perhaps they will change their mind about their review or even give you a second chance.
Benefit by using positive (and negative) reviews
You will start to accumulate dozens, hundreds, or thousands of reviews along the way as an effect of an effective review management strategy implementation.
Do better by using negative reviews as inspirations for you to learn from. We can’t remove negative comments but use this as constructive feedback that will aid in your service improvement.
Let it be that majority of your reviews will be 4 or 5 stars so you may use them as testimonials in your sales materials. Also, on your website’s homepage and landing pages, you can include an always updated list of “happy customers” as “social proof” and credibility to drive and win more people and businesses towards you.