We all know that customer reviews can be a game-changer for your company’s success, but did you know that not all types of reviews are created equally? Differing types of reviews on different platforms can serve separate purposes. Nearly all reviews have some type of benefit, but not all are as important as others. Enter Google reviews. Google reviews for local businesses can help your company’s success skyrocket. If you’re wondering how to get Google reviews and what they stand for, here’s everything you need to know.
Getting more Google reviews is highly beneficial because they’re a great way to increase your local rankings and bring in more customers. When businesses pop up on the Google Places search mechanism, those with more reviews are likely to succeed. The average business that ranks number one on Google Places has many more reviews than a business that ranks a few rungs lower.
The call to action here is simple: get reviews on Google to help your business grow. They can impact how quickly and easily they show up in a customer’s search results. Not surprisingly, knowing how to get reviews on Google can make a world of difference.
Knowing how to get more reviews on Google matters more than you might think.
Getting a five-star rating on Google Places can be far more valuable than a high rating on another platform, like Yelp or Foursquare. Google Places determines some of the first results people see when they look for a business, and this is why being clear on how to get a Google review is vital. Nearly everyone who searches for your product or service online has a high chance of seeing Google Places. It’s incredibly visible, and its star rankings are highly trusted. In fact, people will often Google a product or service with the intent of clicking onto another review site, only to be more satisfied by the ease and clarity of their Google Places results.
Customers who conduct a search for companies like yours are often in the perfect position to connect with your brand. They’re usually ready to make a “commitment” of sorts by calling up a company, checking out a website, or seriously considering making a purchase. It’s the exact moment when you’ll want to impress them with your great reviews. It’s a perfect moment to show them why you’re more worth it than your competition—and you’ll need reviews to make it happen.
Google reviews bring you straight to your customer’s phone or laptop.
Let’s spend a few moments in a potential customer’s shoes. Let’s say they’re looking for a service or product in their area. None of their friends have a recommendation for them, so they’ve turned to the internet for tips. They don’t know where to start, but they do know how to find Google reviews, which they trust. When they type the product or service they need into the search bar, they’ll see results from Google Places.
These results will show customers what options are closest to them, as well as which options seem most likely to deliver on what they need. Of course, customers are more likely to click on and explore the businesses that show up first.
What’s especially important is that these results feature reviews from other customers. They may seem similar to Yelp or other sites, but they’re in a league all their own. Google Places reviews have the ability to increase your ranking on results, which means customers will see you faster. When you’re highly ranked in the results, customers are more likely to view your business as their first and best option. It certainly makes sense that they’d feel that way!
Google reviews can build trust with potential customers.
Let’s take a look at another hypothetical situation: a customer that would like to know more about your business before taking the next step. Customers in this situation have likely heard of your company before and want to be sure that other members of the community have had a good experience with your products or staff. In this case, they’re typing your company name into Google in hopes of finding out more. If they your company name pops up but no reviews appear along with it, they won’t be inclined to trust your business. After all, what kind of impression does it make if you have no reviews?
For starters, the customer might be confused. They’ll wonder whether they’ve even found the correct company in their search, or whether they’ve accidentally singled out another business with the same name. They might imagine that your customer experience is very negative, or that you simply don’t get almost any business at all.
Reviews can make all the difference.
Imagine this situation again with a set of Google reviews in your online arsenal. A customer Googles your company name, and your business shows up right away as a nearby option. You’re a company who knows how to ask customers for Google reviews regularly, so beneath your company name is a series of joyful, positive reviews. The reviews are that much more impactful because they’ve been left by people in the area who are members of the local community. It’s easy to imagine that customer breathing a sigh of relief and excitedly clicking through to your site in order to make a purchase.
Keep in mind that when a potential customer finds you through this type of Google search, they won’t see your reviews on Yelp, or Foursquare, or Facebook, or anywhere else. What they’ll see are your Google reviews, your star rating, and almost nothing else. While those other platforms can certainly serve a purpose, they won’t help you gain traction with the epic business-booster that is Google Places.
A key step to succeeding with Google Places is to receive as many reviews as you can. The more reviews you have, the better your odds are for ranking highly. (And yes, this remains true even if your reviews are negative!)
If you’re looking to increase your Google Places ranking, there are some key factors to know about. You’ll want to take a glance at any competitors in your area and how many reviews they have. In particular, take a peek at how many reviews the average number one ranked business has. You’ll want to keep that number in mind for reference. You’ll also want to consider what else it might take to reach the top three rankings once you have new reviews rolling in.
How to get Google reviews:
By now you’re likely wondering how to increase Google reviews. Of course, one of the first steps to all of this is actually getting customers to give us a Google review in the first place. If getting Google reviews are on your radar to begin with, you’re ahead of much of the curve. However, if you’re struggling to make the reviews actually happen, it’s important to make the process clear and easy for customers.
Customers who are satisfied with their experience are often happy to leave you a positive review. (And if they really loved it, they’ll probably recommend you to their friends as well!) The issue with Google reviews is that they can be a bit confusing. You need a Google account to post them, and it involves a few steps that can seem complicated from the outset. That said, it is more simple than it looks!
Guide customers through the review process.
More customers are likely to have Google accounts than Yelp accounts, so you’ve already got an advantage from the get-go. You’re far less likely to have to ask them to create a whole new account to leave a review. If they do, you can solve the problem with a simple Google review handout. Another benefit is that even if they do have to create an account on Google, they’ll get so much more out of it than simply being able to leave a review. They can use Gmail, create Google Documents, and utilize countless other utilities. Down the line they might even be thanking you for encouraging them to get started with an account!
Once they have an account, customers can increase Google reviews on your page by simply clicking on your business. Then, they can type in a review. Voila! The process is finished. It’s just as easy as leaving a review on Facebook, except they don’t have to read mundane status updates in the process. You can even hand out a Google review card that provides instructions on how to leave Google reviews to make things that much easier. If you want to mix things up, you could even offer Google review business cards! These Google review cards can include a positive review template that explains exactly how to do it. If you mostly reach out to customers via digital means, you can also email instructions.
How to request Google reviews:
Beyond using a Google review handout, also encourage customers to leave feedback in other ways. Consider sending them a message with Google review instructions that includes catchy calls to action like the options below:
- “Rate us on Google.”
- “Please review us on Google.”
- “Leave us a review on Google.”
- “Review me on Google.”
- “Leave us a Google review.”
- Any other phrase that resonates. The sky is the limit!
A Quick, Free Way to Get Positive Google Reviews
Fill out the form to get your free Google Review Request Handout
In these notes, offer up the Google review template. Choose whichever call of action best resonates with yoru customer base. You can send this message via text or email and can include the customer review template along with it. (An important note: make sure your client review template includes clear instructions, and don’t pay for Google reviews. Paid Google reviews are often ethically murky.) Ensure that customers feel heard and valued, and let them know that their Google reviews will go to good use by breaking down why matter so much.
Explain to customers that if they could please leave a review, they could help your business grow and help you to improve the customer experience. After all, honest reviews show you what you can improve on, and the increased business brought in from increased reviews may increase your financial ability to make big improvements to what you offer. Another beneficial option is to create a “thank you for your review” template that is sent after your Google review cards go out. This can keep the goodwill going with your customers.
Once you know how to get more Google reviews, you can turn your business upside-down in the best of ways. When you’re recommended and trusted by your local community, you’ll keep on growing. Great reviews beget more great reviews, and the positive cycle will continue.