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We have written quite a number of articles about online reviews. Each one of them educates you on one aspect of online reviews that is important for your business.
The internet has changed the way we access, process, store, and consume information. It has changed how we do business and how brands relate with their customers.
What’s more, it has given customers a voice.
A voice that is has grown in relevance in the world of internet business.
What do I mean by ‘voice’?
Back in the day, customers had nowhere to air their views about their experience with a business. They may have a good experience, perhaps a bad one, and no one would hear of it, except their neighbours. Word-of-mouth was the most effective way to spread word about a business back then.
Nowadays, the internet has given customers a platform to speak their minds and tell their experience to the world. This has given them more power than they ever had.
Online reviews have grown to be effective in influencing the decisions of other customers.
Without further ado, I am going to be showing you 6 reasons you should take online reviews seriously:
Online Reviews Act As Social Proof That Drives Sales
Humans are social creatures. Back in the day we lived in clans and small groups. We did only what others did. If a majority of the clan endorsed something, we all did it. This helped us stay alive.
Not much has changed since then. Even with the advent of the internet, people still need the approval of the ‘clan’ to make a decision. Online reviews serve as a social proof of the quality or credibility of a brand.
We are more likely going to purchase a product if others say it’s great. On the converse, we are more likely going to avoid a brand if people said negative things about them.
This is the power of online reviews.
90% of shoppers check at least one customer review before they decide to buy or not. 94% of online shoppers have boycotted a brand as a result of one negative review. Without a doubt, you can see that customer reviews does influence the buying decisions of other potential customers.
You can use this to your advantage by posting positive reviews about your brand where everyone can see it. This is guaranteed to drive up your sales.
They Improve Your Online Visibility
To be successful on the internet you have to be visible, otherwise no one will know you exist. Visibility is key if you want potential customers to find you. And customer reviews can help boost your visibility.
By raising your credibility in the ‘eyes’ of various platforms.
Large search engines and review platforms favour brands with lots of positive reviews. Although they may have other criteria for indexing and presenting brand content, customer reviews is at the top of the indexing criteria.
And so, as you rank high on search engine result pages consequently you get more exposure.
They Increase Your Credibility
Before people can do business with you, they have to trust you.
This isn’t a secret. You wouldn’t do business with a brand if you thought they were shifty and unpopular.
Positive customer reviews show other potential customers that people trust your brand and your product/service. They tell others that it is safe to do business with you.
A lot of customers out there will not buy from you if you have average star ratings below 4. Big name review sites now have search features with filter function. With it, customers can search for brands using star ratings as a filtering criterion.
This means that if you do not have a steady stream of top star ratings coming in, you may find it difficult to convert.
They Help Increase Mentions Of Your Brand
It does appear that only bad news spreads fast. Apparently, good news does, too.
When customers are happy with your brand, they will eagerly spread the word on their social media page and review sites.
Now imaging you have 50 happy customers that have 100 contacts. If they spread the good news about your brand to each of those contacts and get them to mention or talk about your brand, that’s 5 thousand people! That’s a lot of mentions.
As a result of their action, you may see yourself getting news customers you could never reach on a regular day.
They Clearly Impact Sales
In the world of business, not everything goes according to plan. Some things may look good on paper but turn out to be a flaming disaster in real life.
However, customer reviews and their impact on sales is an exception.
There has been a lot of studies proving that positive customer reviews does indeed drive sales up. These researches have shown that companies with better reviews record higher sales than those that with poor reviews.
A study by Harvard Business review demonstrated that customer reviews can positively impact your sales.
A 2016 study by Revoo showed that reviews drive an average of 18% increase in overall sales. Back in 2011, Berkeley showed reported that an increase of half a star rating improved the likelihood that restaurant will get more customers at peak hours by 30 to 49%.
I could go on and on but I believe the point is clear: online reviews impacts sales.
They Give You A Perfect Opportunity To Reach Out To Your Customers
When customers leave you a review, they expect a reply. Studies have shown that over 70% of customers want brands to respond to their reviews.
For positive reviews, customers want you as a brand to show appreciation. You should thank them for writing you a review. Or maybe even reward them for doing that.
In the case of a negative review, unhappy customers want you to help resolve their issues. Many business managers make the mistake of avoiding or ignoring negative reviews. Or worse, responding unprofessionally to them.
Responding to negative reviews calms the unhappy customer and demonstrates that you care about their feelings. Additionally, it shows others that you value the opinion of your customers.
This makes reviews a good opportunity to touch your customers’ heart and show them you really value them.
In the end, wanting to get reviews is only a start. Knowing how important they are to your business will give you a new perspective on how to better utilize them. To learn more, here are 6 ways to get more customer reviews and ratings.POSTED ON December 28, 2019