Let’s start off by asking “What is the importance of customer reviews for potential customers?” Unsurprisingly they’re VERY important. Studies show that 90% of consumers read online reviews either before visiting a business OR engaging/purchasing from that business and a whopping 85%+ trust independent online reviews from places such as Trust Pilot, Google and Facebook just as much as a personal recommendation from a colleague, friend or family member.
Online reviews from customers have created a new branch in marketing and communication that helps to bridge that gap between traditional word-of-mouth and the various forms of paid advertising providing a proven way to influence a potential customers consumer’s opinion. The best thing about many of these platforms are that they’re 100% free, and most of the time it takes little to no effort to either integrate a review service into your current automated workflow or create a basic template you can send out to customers manually.
The importance of customer reviews for your business is exponential but if you’re still not convinced? let’s take a step back and highlight the top 5 reasons (in our opinion) why your business should be present on review platforms.
Love it or loath it social media is thriving and as we begin to see a bigger generational shift, the buyers of tomorrow are very interested in knowing what others have to say before they make their purchasing decisions. Much like you would ask friends and family for recommendations, review sites allow everyone to do this online with just a few clicks or easier still if the provider has integrated a 3rd part review service into their existing solution(s). Who would you prefer to buy from, a provider with 0 reviews or 25+ 5* Trust Pilot reviews? (it’s not a hard choice).
Over time, being able to display a history of positive interactions with your business will help to solidify a position within your industry. Also by having reviews spread over 5+ years (for instance) provides re-assurance to your customers that you have been around a while and that you can be trusted. Running a business isn’t just about the immediate future, setting up these process now will help exponentially with onboarding more clients as you grow, not forgetting that reviews can often generate more reviews (get that little snowball rolling down the hill).
Analysing reviews left by customers, helps a company understand their end users even better, their honest unbiased opinion, overall satisfaction and maybe even recommendations on how your organisation could improve as a business, highlighting what your customers truly want. This insight can be invaluable over time, enabling you to improve customer service by acting quickly and efficiently. Having a negative review or experience highlighted for the world to see might initially appear concerning or even detrimental to your business BUT handled correctly this can actually be of benefit to your company. Every business that’s been around a minute has had a customer service issue at some point in time, but often a company will show it’s true colours during these incidents. If you can respond quickly and professionally, that can speak volumes about your company to prospective customers showing that you care and are pro-active when handling complaints.
Mentioned briefly in the above introduction but to reemphasise the point that these review platforms are all completely FREE to use. There are very few resources in todays world that are not only a great benefit to your business, enhance customer satisfaction and help conversions but don’t come with a hefty price tag! In our eyes having between 1-3 of these platforms in place for customers to leave reviews and for you to actively build them into your workflow is an absolute “no brainer”.
And if all the above wasn’t enough to convince you your business should be collecting reviews, how about some extra visibility on search engines? Yes not only do independent review sites have a high domain authority they also appear in searches as well. Multiplied exponentially if you run an e-commerce website where customers could potentially leave individual product reviews as well increasing your product visibility as well.
Here’s a snapshot of how we currently appear when Trust Pilot shows our information
Note: You can always take reviews another step further by writing case studies or stories as we like to call them. Here is an example of how we demonstrat the importance of customer reviews as part of a client story for North Property Group.
Something in the article peaked your interest? We’re never more than a contact form or a quick call away so please don’t hesitate to get in touch!