How to manage online reviews

Online reviews are a chance to increase your brand’s trustworthiness in the eyes of consumers, driving 18 per cent higher loyalty and 21 per cent more purchase satisfaction, according to Kissmetrics blogger Neil Patel. But if nearly half of the people reading them will only trust four-star reviews and higher, how can you ensure that your business remains within that range? Patel offers a few suggestions:

What you should do:

  • Locate where the three most influential reviews for your type of business occur online. For example, dealership reviews likely appear more frequently on Google and social media platforms, although a good number of reviews can also appear outside of these domains.

  • - Ask for a review through your website, social media channels, emails or even in-store. For example, Aaron’s Auto Repair & Service asked customers to “Review us on Google” and “Give Feedback” after leaving a short message that demonstrates appreciation towards the customer and values them.

  • - Don’t panic if you receive a negative review. Instead, you’ll need to “create a positive spin on a less-than-stellar review,” says Patel. More importantly, try to catch the user soon after the review has been posted so you can manage the situation more appropriately.

  • - Optimize your website for “social proof” (or testimonials) so that customers can see up, front and centre what others have to say about your business. It also shows that you’re transparent and confident with what you have to offer, and it provides an added peace of mind to new customers. It will also help you with your conversion rates.

Finally, Patel suggests offering incentives to employees to boost the number of positive reviews you receive. It’s better than a discount or a free item!