While running an online business, entrepreneurs often rely on different marketing techniques to gain exposure from potential customers.
Some of these marketing tactics are paid whereas others allow business owners to attract the audience organically. No doubt, all these marketing strategies can help you attain the desired results, nothing works as fine as the reviews from your past customers. They act as a social proof and can influence the purchase decision of new customers.
For small-scale and local businesses, furthermore, these reviews provide the authenticity and give a better insight into the brand reputation so that customers can make the right decision.
But, how to get more reviews as a local business? If you run a local business, you may already know that encouraging customers to leave reviews is not a cakewalk. Customers are always in a hurry and they do not want to spare extra time to write feedback.
So, in this comprehensive guide, we have penned down a detailed guide on how to get more reviews for your local business and boost your brand reputation to attract new customers.
The Importance of Customers Reviews for a Local Business
Before we dive into the tactics to get more reviews, let’s first understand their significance. Why does your local business need reviews?
How will they put your brand ahead of the curve and provide you with better customer exposure? Here are a few statistics that’ll help you understand the importance of customer reviews for a local business.
- Nearly 95% of consumers read online reviews before making a purchase.
- When it comes to local businesses, 93% of customers read the customer reviews before making the final decision.
- When a product gets more than 5 reviews, its ability to being purchased increases by 270%.
- 84% of millennials don’t prefer conventional branding and prefer reviews to make the right decision.
7 Tactics to Increase Customer Reviews for Your Local Business
1. Ask Customers for E-mail Address at the Billing Counter
The easiest way to encourage customers to leave a review is through follow-ups. But, how will you send this follow-up?
After customers have purchased a product from your store, you can ask them to share their email address at the billing counter. They’ll most likely share their email address and you can use it in the future to send follow-ups encouraging these customers to leave reviews.
Keep in mind that the customers will only share their email address if they enjoyed shopping at your store. It means you’ll have to focus on the in-store ambience and provide a great in-store service as well.
2. Verbally Communicate With the Customers at Your Store
You can place several placards at your store asking customers to leave reviews. But, chances are people may never pay attention to them.
That’s where verbal communication comes into the picture. You can run training programs among your team to teach them how to ask customers to leave a review for their shopping experience. Of course, it’s not advisable to directly ask them to leave the review.
Instead, train your employees to find the right moment to talk to the customers. For instance, if a customer has waited for several minutes in a long queue at the billing counter, you would not want to take more of their time by asking them to leave an online review.
3. Always Respond to Customer Reviews
As a business owner, the biggest mistake you can make is not responding to people who have shared their feedback for your brand.
It’s worth understanding that reviews can be positive or negative – your goal should be to reply to each review, irrespective of how they highlight your brand.
Replying to customer reviews will showcase that you indeed care about customers’ valuable feedback. Consequently, you’ll be able to build a strong brand reputation and generate quality leads more conveniently.
Now, it doesn’t matter where people are leaving these reviews – be it your website, Google My Business (GMB) page, or social media platforms – you should respond to these reviews all the time.
4. Add a Reminder to Encourage People to Leave Reviews on Your Website
Your website is the most effective platform to communicate with the customers.
Unfortunately, not all local businesses leverage their official website to connect with potential buyers. In addition to optimizing the website for better SEO, you can also add a reminder that encourages people to leave their feedback.
This reminder should not only encourage people to add a review, but also explain the entire process as well. In many cases, people hesitate to leave reviews mainly because they are not familiar with the entire process.
Add relevant CTAs that directly navigate users to the review page so that they don’t have to go through any hassle while writing the review. After a user has left a review, make sure to showcase your gratitude and thank them for shedding those extra seconds.
5. Don’t Undervalue the Power of Social Media
In addition to your website, your social media handles are also a great place to communicate with the potential audience. However, keep in mind that you can’t directly ask customers to write the reviews.
Instead, run a few engaging campaigns and giveaways so that people feel more encouraged to leave the reviews. Giveaways act as great incentives to lure the customers and get plenty of positive reviews.
If you are planning to run giveaway contests, make sure to be vocal about it and spread the word as much as possible. Make sure to mention posts and stories revolving around the giveaway contest.
6. Add a “Leave Us a Review” Card on Your Website
Finally, you can also design a dedicated “Leave a Review” card and publish it on your website to captivate people who visit it.
The general thumb rule says that this page should be designed in such a way that it aligns with your brand’s overall color scheme and theme.
You can further personaize this card by adding a custom message. At the end, add the link to your review page so that customers don’t go through any hassle while writing the review.
7. Add the Testimonials on Your Website
Once you have enough customer reviews, add a dedicated section on your website that highlights some of the positive feedback.
The general thumb rule says that you should add this review section to your homepage so that anyone visiting the home page also gets encouraged to leave a review.
The Bottom Line
Online reviews are an effective way to build brand reputation and get better exposure from potential customers. The above-mentioned tactics will help you encourage people to submit reviews. Consequently, you’ll be able to build a social proof for your brand and unlock new lead generation opportunities more effectively.