It turns out online reviews can be an important tool for SEO and how many customers may use your website as a decision making tool. In fact a company called BrightLocal, which provides search marketing tools.
|Online reviews build credibility|
In 2014 BrightLocal's annual Local Consumer Review Survey found that fully 88 percent of people surveyed said they consulted online reviews either “occasionally” or “regularly”
In fact what type of business you are in has a huge impact on the impact of your online reviews. Businesses that fared really well included Restaurants, Doctors, Dentists, Clothing and Hair and Beauty Salons. Business types that seemed to rely less on reviews included Driving Instructors, Wedding shops, Accountants to name but a few.
Google also sees reviews as a factor in their SERP (search engine results pages) results. It may not be the number of reviews you receive but the length and originality that has a bigger impact. Also search companies are using new tools to weed out duplicate content and even where the review came from to spot false or fake reviews. In this day and age you can pretty much buy anything online including social media followers and fake reviews. Currently Amazon is suing people that are charging money for fake reviews on their site.
What makes a quality online review?
Well obviously sincerity. Did the reviewer really shop at your store? Did the reviewer take time to write a well crafted review or was it a simple “The food was good” type of review? This will have an impact on the response a new viewer to your site may react or respond to your business.
What makes a bad review?
Well it may be as simple as our example above. Short and not much real information. Information a potential new customer can use to make an informed decision about your business.
If you have received a negative review there are some steps you can take to turn that frown upside down.
Determine If the Review is Real
It’s not especially common, but fraudulent reviews do happen. Though review sites have rules set up to avoid this, it’s not unheard of for an unscrupulous business to try to use negative reviews to take down a competitor.
Flag It or Remove It — If You Can
I have been able to identify fake reviews by competitors and had them removed by flagging them with a search engine like Google or Bing etc. Believe it or not they don’t want fake content on their sites either.
Respond the Right Way
Respond to the reviewer and see if there is a way to make things right. Was it bad service or high pricing? Identify the customers gripe and do your best to fix it. Once you have come to a positive conclusion ask the reviewer to remove the bad review or write an addendum explaining how you two worked together on a solution.
Get More Good Reviews
Try adding a page to your website or offer a small incentive for customers to post reviews regarding your business. This will build customer loyalty as well as great online presence and confidence in potential new customers.
In any case, knowing that online reviews are another way to get Google, Bing, Yahoo etc .to notice you gives your business another tool to utilize to promote yourself.
Contact Results Business Marketing, if you don’t have the time to utilize all of the different tools your business needs to maximize it’s SEO efforts
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