It used to be that when opening a small business, the most important things were to find the best location possible and taking good care of customers. But with the popularisation of the internet, something else now needs to be taken into account: reviews.
In the same way that opening a restaurant in a bad location puts a business at a significant disadvantage from the start, a small business with a bad or inexistent internet reputation is at a significant disadvantage from the start. We are living in an era in which internet competition is quite strong. Small, local businesses are finding it increasingly difficult to stand out in a crowded internet marketplace, and the number of considerations that must be made appears to be never-ending. It is understandable that adding Google reviews to the list of considerations may not your priority.
But to ensure the success of a local business, online reviews are vital. Consumers’ purchase decisions are increasingly influenced by online reviews, which is especially true for small businesses. A number of customers now rely on internet reviews as much as they rely on a personal recommendation from a trusted friend. The good news is that Google reviews are actually quite helpful to small local businesses, and they can help with everything from your search engine ranking to your reputation in general. So, how do Google reviews effect your business? In this article, we will give you the reasons why Google reviews really matter to your business’ well being.
What is google review?
A Google review is a brief online summary written by a customer about a company’s products or services as well as their overall experience with that particular company. Google reviews are a place where customers can express themselves honestly about your company. You will find google reviews when looking up a business on google maps or on the right side of the results page after googling the business.
- Increasing trust
People won’t do business with you until they feel like they can trust you and your product/service. Reviews have become an essential instrument for increasing the level of comfort and trust that consumers seek before doing business with you, especially amongst those who are unfamiliar with your business. Transparency has become extremely important to consumers. Nowadays, it is not uncommon for a consumer to conduct online research before making a purchase. In fact, roughly 88 percent of buyers look at online reviews to judge the quality of a local business before doing business with them. A significant portion of this research is typically conducted through Google reviews.
- Increasing online exposure and improve SEO
Google watches the activity of ratings and gives a boost to businesses that have a large number of high ratings, as well as businesses that have a high number of ratings, because it recognises businesses that try to engage with their consumers and respond to their feedback. A high number of positive reviews can propel your company to the top of the Google Local Pack, which displays the first three businesses that appear towards the top of the search page depending on their location. The best part is that you can reach the top of the page even if your business is very small!
- Gathering genuine customer feedback
There is no better to way to know what your clients think about your business than looking at reviews. Reviews can really give you insight on certain things that you might not have considered as a business owner/manager. Indeed you provide a service but do not get to fully experience what it is like to receive said service. There is something to be gained from every review, even the negative ones. Obviously, you want to minimise the amount of unfavourable reviews as they will have a negative impact on your business if too frequently recurring.
- Be a step ahead of competition (even big competition)
One of the difficulties that small or local businesses frequently encounter is standing out from the crowd in the face of larger or more well-known competitors. We understand that a tiny business may feel as if it will never be able to compete with the big players, but Google reviews can help to level the playing field a little.
Even if a large corporation has a large marketing budget and is extremely well-known, it will still look bad if customers leave negative reviews. If you turn up with your positive and glowing reviews, you could attract customers that would have gone to the competition otherwise. This is how you can make the difference for your business.
In addition, customers often want to support local businesses, but they may require a small amount of proof to convince them that they are making the proper choice. It is possible to build a strong overall review rating for your local business, which can help it stand out against larger, national competitors. The reviews will help you appear in local search results, and they can persuade a potential customer to choose you over the larger brand.
- Google is the king of search engines
Google is responsible for 70 percent of all online searches, so the likelihood that someone will find you and your company through the world’s most popular search engine is extremely high. So it makes a lot of sense to put a lot of effort into maximising your reviews on such a well-known platform as Google+.
Google business reviews can have a significant impact on three key areas of your business: trust, local SEO, feedback and customer interaction. By not using Google reviews, you may be missing out on benefits that your competitors are taking advantage of.
And bonus, reviews on Google are completely free! With a small investment of time and resources, you may achieve tremendous results in a relatively short period of time.
The bottom line is, if you haven’t already, make use of Google business reviews to build brand trust, improve local SEO, and get feedback and insights. You’ll quickly discover that it’s one of the most cost-effective methods of generating leads for your company and establishing trust in your region.