Whether you are an established company with years of experience, or you have just emerged and are making a name for yourself, developing a good reputation is of paramount importance. Your brand, its visibility, and associated quality will be the vehicle of your future achievements. The better your brand represents excellent value, the higher the likelihood of customers engaging in business with you.
One of the best and most cost-effective ways of conveying your brand’s value is through customer reviews. This is reinforced by a recent Statista study, which indicates that shoppers now expect to see a significant number of credible reviews when making buying decisions.
In the following article, we highlight five of the most important reasons why reviews are integral to your brand’s success.
It goes without saying that one of the most effective ways to ensure your brand reaches more people is through strategic search engine optimization (SEO). A lesser-known fact is that increasing the number of positive reviews written about your business actually facilitates your SEO efforts and rankings.
As your brand is mentioned in reviews, Google (and other search engine) bots begin to recognize it as unique content. This plays a role in helping you achieve better positioning when potential customers search for the types of products or services you have on offer. Showing up higher in search results creates a snowball effect that results in more potential leads that can be converted into customers.
Have you ever gone for a certain product because of the rave reviews? Or chosen a specific service because a friend or family member recommended it? If the experiences of others have influenced your consumer behavior, then you have been swayed by ‘social proof’. Social proof (otherwise known as ‘informational social influence’) can be thought of as evidence that certain goods or services are of a certain quality through the experiences of others.
When a business serves its customers well and receives positive reviews for all its efforts, other consumers are far more likely to have a better perception of the company in question. Brand perception is important because it gives consumers greater confidence in the business. This translates to reviews acting as reassurance that specified products or services, which potential customers intend to spend money on, have already been tried, tested and given the green light.
Consumers need to recognize your business as being both trustworthy and credible for you to develop a strong brand image. This is vitally important not just for attracting new customers, but also for maintaining the loyalty of existing ones. One of the best ways of achieving this is through consistently excellent online reviews.
It’s also worth noting that the occasional subpar review can be useful. Firstly, it shows a level of transparency that you do not shy away from negative feedback. Secondly, such reviews often give you a better opportunity to spot areas of weakness so that you can address and improve upon them.
Make sure you pay close attention to all complaints and do your best to always respond to these negative reviews. This can result in two positive outcomes. Firstly, it can help you win back the trust and business of the customer in question. Secondly, it eases any worries other potential customers may start to develop by showing that you have addressed the problem.
While it is common knowledge that comedically bad reviews can go viral, very good reviews can also spread quickly. If you can maximize the occurrence of the latter, you can significantly increase the reach and impact of your brand.
People who have great experiences with your brand are much more willing to shout out about it. This opens up a number of strategic ways for your business to encourage customers to leave reviews. You can get creative with different incentives that will also work to boost engagement with your existing clients.
Whether you get reviews on Google My Business, Capterra, TrustPilot, Trip Advisor, or any other platform, they lead to greater brand visibility, which is the building block for business growth.
A brand that garners stamps of approval from paying clientele is better positioned to gain the trust of new customers. In other words, positive reviews can impact your business by influencing more potential customers to convert into buyers.
A growing number of people now rely on the Internet to make everyday purchases. But the sheer volume of companies actively selling online can complicate buying decisions as consumers seek out maximum value from a wide range of options. In this landscape, websites that include reviews of their products and services gain an immediate competitive advantage over close rivals who don’t. And in markets that are becoming increasingly saturated, these small wins can make a huge difference to your business’ bottom line in the long run.
As can be seen, reviews play a key role in overall brand success. This is amplified even further by the shift in consumer behavior towards shopping online. In addition to improving your reputation, good reviews will also boost your visibility, drive more traffic to your website, and ultimately increase your sales.
Given this impact, your business should incorporate processes that encourage customers to leave reviews for the excellent services you provide. Below are a few ideas that could help you achieve this.
- Make it convenient to leave reviews on multiple platforms
- Ensure that the process of leaving reviews is quick and easy
- Provide incentives to encourage more customers to leave reviews
Doing so will put you in the best position to enhance your brand image.