The Internet has become one of the crucial ways to choose services and find particular businesses. People would much rather look for a business online, than take time to go through paper ads. One way to check if a company is trustworthy or not –go online and check the reviews a company has. Too many positive or negative comments can have a significant influence on the number of people that want to hire you. But how many reviews does your business actually need? So, what is an optimal number of reviews that your company needs, and what are the ways to make those reviews help you grow your business?
Why are reviews so important for your business?
Even though print marketing still matters, online promotions and positive reviews have taken the biggest part of the marketing game. The reasons why you need to care about your business’ online reviews are:
- They increase your sales – positive reviews help users decide to pick a business, and therefore increase the number of sales.
- Help you understand customers’ needs – you can make your products or services better if you can see how your customers feel about it. Use their opinion wisely and make changes that can help you grow.
- Improve your website ranking – search engines will treat your website better if it receives reviews all the time. So, if you understand that website is one of the most important aspects of your business, along with the reviews, you can significantly increase your sales and attract more customers.
- Provide your business with free marketing – online reviews are one of the ways to run your marketing on a budget. Satisfied customers will leave reviews and therefore promote your business, for free.
Local businesses reviews on average
First, before you get to the number of how many reviews your business actually needs, let’s see some basic information about local businesses and their Google reviews. On average, most of the businesses have around 40 reviews, while businesses that appear on higher Google positions have more, around 50 reviews. Also, certain types of businesses get more or fewer reviews. For example, bars, hotels, and restaurants usually have more reviews – one of the things you should know about starting a restaurant. Businesses like law offices and accounting usually get fewer reviews. You should also know that people generally leave reviews when they are satisfied with a service or product – that’s why the average Google rating is 4.42 for local businesses.
How many reviews does your business actually need on different online platforms?
When it comes to the number of reviews, there’s no magical number since there are a lot of platforms your customers can leave a review at. Our advice is to maintain multiple profiles at different websites so that you can get reviews from different sources.
Google has recently changed its policy about displaying rating based on the number of reviews. In the past, you would need more than five ratings to get a star rating, whereas now you only need one or two. Therefore, having just a couple of good ratings will create a positive Google image for your business. However, for getting a Google seller rating so you can sell online using AdWord campaign, you need to work a bit harder. Your business needs to receive at least 150 reviews from different people – and they need to be satisfied, as well. The overall rating needs to be over 3.5 in order to join this ‘club’.
Social networks have become a very important factor in attracting customers and generating leads. Facebook is not that strict when it comes to showing your rating. Any number of reviews will show on your profile – which can be both advantage and disadvantage. Either way, be sure to focus on getting positive Facebook reviews regularly.
Figure 1 Facebook isn’t strict about how many reviews does your business actually need, but every comment counts alt.tag: a Facebook app opened on a mobile phone
Yelp is another way to get more customers since Yelp reviews show on Bing results, as well as Google. When it comes to many reviews does your business actually need on Yelp, there’s no specific number here. However, it’s important to have as many as possible, more than your local competition. Improve your Yelp profile with professional images, complete business contact information, and replies to the existing reviews – even if they are not questions. Interact with your customers and you’ll get even more positive feedback.
How to get more positive reviews
Getting more positive reviews takes a bit of effort other than just running a good business. Here are some tips on how to encourage your customers to leave a review and therefore get more customers:
- Be present on multiple platforms – to get more reviews you need to make your business easy to find on the internet. This means having profiles on various websites and social networks. Having multiple profiles makes you more professional and engaged with your customers.
- Leave replies – be sure to answer the existing reviews and therefore encourage communication with you and your customers. Even if they didn’t leave a question, you can always write “Thank you” or “Sorry for your inconvenience”, depending on the nature of the comment.
- Interact with your customers – social networks give us a unique chance to have good communication with customers and inform them about your new products, services, and other news. For example, once you decide to change your business address, you can easily inform your clients and partners about this event.
- Know how to deal with the negative reviews – negative comments may hurt your feelings, but you need to learn how to deal with them. Be sure to respond quickly and offer the best solution to make the problem go away. Always be polite and if possible, contact the customer offline to resolve the issue. Another way is to request the website to remove some of the defamatory comments, especially if you feel they are not true.
Maria is a teacher who enjoys blogging on different topics. She loves social networks and posting photos on Instagram and Pinterest. Her passion is traveling and decorating her home.