Presented by Emily Carl, this webinar focuses on the critical importance and impact of online customer reviews on business search results and bottom-line revenue. Online reviews are absolutely crucial to the reputation and economic health of any business; learn the best practices to leverage your positive customer reviews to improve your search rankings, attract new customers, and grow your business.
Follow along with Emily
- Hello! Thank you all so much for joining me for today’s webinar, “Reviews, Revenue, and SEO.”
- My name is Emily Carl, and I’m an Account Manager here at ReviewTrackers. In this half hour webinar we’re going to be talking about why it’s important to increase your online reviews, as well as how to increase online visitors on search engines with little monetary commitment and minimal time commitment.
- We will also discuss the importance of online customer reviews as they relate to your business, in terms of generating revenue for your business and helping improve the search results.
- I’ve been in the review business for 2 years, and work directly with some of our current clients to ensure they are increasing their online visibility with the help of their online reviews.
- We understand that you value your customers’ voice, and want to run a business that strives to make those customers happy – and turn them into raving fans.
- I will be recording this webinar and sharing the video with all attendants to reference back to at any time.
- The content of this webinar can fit into three categories. The first is how reviews drive search results for your business.
- Then we’ll take a look at how reviews drive consumer behavior in terms of getting consumers to read reviews during the shopping or vetting process.
- Third we’ll talk about how reviews drive revenue for your business and how you can do a few simple things to grow the number of online reviews.
- I want you to stay on the webinar until the end because I’m going to give you access to try our tool that will help you monitor and grow your online reviews. Our goal is to make sure that your business leverages its online reviews to build your brand, increase your search results, and create a strong reputation online.
- At the end of my presentation we’ll open it up for Q and A.
- There is a chat box attached to the webinar control panel on your screen. And if you have any questions while I go through the content of this presentation feel free to post them there and I will address them at the end.
- So let’s get started! It cannot be said enough, the importance of reviews to your business, especially when it comes to improving search results and SEO. It’s about driving visitors to your site, and it’s done by getting consumers to click on your listing when you appear in results at search engines like Google, Bing, or Yahoo.
- In this example, we were looking for a coffee shop in the Chicago area, so we searched with the keywords, “coffee near Chicago”. The results appeared with several coffee shops in the vicinity. Chicago Grind ranks here at the top, and you can see that it had 8 reviews, along with a 3.9 star rating. The reason Chicago Grind displayed its overall star rating and number of reviews in this initial Google display, was because the business had more than 5 reviews. Why does having more than 5 reviews matter?
- Businesses are beginning to realize that once you have more than 5 reviews on your Google plus listing, the star rating, which are those gold stars, appears in your listing in the search result.
- And searchers are much more likely to click through to look at the reviews on that review site itself. The goal is to ultimately end up at the website of the location. So it’s extremely important for businesses to ask for reviews from their customers, especially for their Google Plus listing. That way, the star rating displays in the search result, alongside the business information. Which is why it’s necessary to ensure that your business information is accurate on all review profiles. One way to do this is claiming each profile, which I will cover later on.
- In a recent move by Bing, Yelp reviews are now displayed when you search for a business. The search engine added a new Yelp review box to its search results which highlight Yelp reviews when you search for “<business name> reviews” in Bing. Another reason it’s extremely important to maintain your Yelp profile, since those reviews will be displayed immediately in a Bing search.
- Generally, the more reviews that you have for your business, the higher up you’re going to rank in search results on search engines, and a continual stream of reviews that are written about your business is going to help you increase your local search results.
- To reiterate, getting more reviews will drive up your search results. It will also increase the amount of customers that actually click on your listing in the search result themselves.
- Another big truth about search is that dynamic content builds SEO. Dynamic content is fresh content, updated either daily, weekly or monthly. Search engines reward fresh content with a higher ranking. And one of the best examples of fresh content are reviews that are written online, which is why generating new reviews about your business will result in performing well in a local search.
- Responding to reviews is another factor to consider when you want to generate fresh content for search purposes. A great benefit of ReviewTrackers is the ability to be alerted of new reviews on the review sites we monitor, so you have the opportunity to respond to that review in a timely manner.
- Any responses that you write are picked up and indexed by a search engine like Google, which improves your overall SEO. This is because, like a review, a response is dynamic content to your site. So a best practice when responding to a review is to reiterate key words from the review.
- Adding in keywords that matches the original review will increase your SEO since the importance of the keywords will be amplified after they are repeated.
- It’s important to make sure the keywords in your response are search based relevant. Those keywords will increase your chances of ranking high in a search. It’s about making your response, responsive.
- For example, if a reviewer mentions your business’ outstanding service, or great product, mention that in your response. It’s important to respond to the review with those keywords to increase your opportunity to boost your ranking. Also, including those keywords personalizes your response, which is also extremely important since generic or canned responses look insincere to viewers.
- So again, the more dynamic fresh data online in reference to your business, the higher up you get pushed in SEO search results.
- In fact, reviews are one of the 5 most important ranking factors in search results, according to Moz.com. There is an abundance of data that explains how Google algorithms work in terms of ranking businesses in search. And what the team at Moz found is that reviews are in the top 5 factors, along with consistent business information like name, address, and phone number across listings. Which ties in with my next point.
- It’s important to make sure that all of your basic business information is up to date on all review site profiles, whether it’s Yelp, Google+, TripAdvisor, or Foursquare to name a few.
- So how do you confirm your review profiles are up to date with the correct information? You claim those profiles. Claiming a profile ensures that you can update business information and respond to reviews. After you claim a profile, you have the opportunity to log in to that respective review site under your business account.
- Your review profiles are a great extension of your brand. The reviews from your happiest customers are public affirmations and can help your business grow its revenue. Claiming profiles ensures ownership of those review pages. You then have the power to update business information, hours of operation, add photos, and even include a bio of the business.
- The claiming process for each site varies slightly, but there is a consistent underlying theme for each site. Claiming a profile requires a verification, either through a phone or email prompt, or both. An easy way to tell if your profile is claimed is whether it displays an icon or an option to claim it on the profile itself. If it prompts you to claim, you can click on the icon and follow the necessary steps. Although that sounds obvious, it’s important to note because some review sites allow third-parties (like consumers) to create profiles of businesses. So in order for a business to claim it as it’s own, it must create the profile initially, or find the profile and verify the information through the automated email or phone prompt. Also, a claimed business will help verify other viewers that that specific profile is correct, in case there are duplicate listings.
- Make sure your business hours are updated and are accurate; make sure your website address is listed on your profile. If they give you an option to upload additional information, like a menu, or if you can upload photographs or especially video, do that as well because these things can really help increase the dynamic content posted to your site.
- This can help your overall SEO performance, especially when those profiles contain reviews.
- Responding to a review on a site is easy, but in order to do that you must first be logged in to that site as the business owner or manager for that page. Once you locate the review, hit the reply button near the review. It will allow you to leave a public response. Some sites also allow business owners to send direct messages as well.
- We recommend responding to all reviews, since it builds a rapport with your customers. Responding to negative reviews is especially important. There are two things I would recommend when responding to a negative review – reaching out to the customer privately (via phone or email if you have their information) and also responding to the review publicly.
- It is so important that you do respond, because potential and current customers can see those interactions on that site, and see how well the business handles negative criticism. If it does so in stride, and works to offer the customer a solution, that reflects well on her business, and improves the chances that those who read these interactions will have a positive reaction. In most cases, reviews cannot be removed or deleted, so responding is your best weapon.
- Outside of search rankings, reviews in fact drive visibility on Google maps as well, as you probably know from personal searches on Google. The number of reviews actually affects the way you’re displayed in the result. For example, if you have 32 reviews on your Google+ business page, the pin on the map is much larger than a competitor with fewer reviews. So it’s critical to get as many reviews about your business as possible.
- A trend we’re increasingly becoming aware of as consumers and marketers alike, is that mobile review usage is up 8% just in the last year. What it seems is that more and more consumers are relying on reviews when they’re trying to figure out whether to choose a business or not. And they tend to do that on their mobile phone. This is a significant stat because those on mobile may be closer to a purchase, since they may be out and trying to make an immediate decision on what business to choose.
- The more reviews that you can get on the web, the more likely it is that those mobile users are going to find those reviews, read them, and then click through to the business information attached to that review profile. This is because consumers are increasingly relying on and trusting online reviews. It’s word of mouth, digitally.
- People trust online reviews so much so, that 72% of consumers trust online reviews as much as they trust personal recommendations from their friends or family. And 4 out of 5 consumers read online reviews before they make a purchasing decision. So we’re inclined to read reviews before we decide which service to buy or which location to patronize.
- Online reviews are twice as more trusted than social network signals, like a Facebook like or a Twitter retweet. A lot of money is spent on social network advertising but, this doesn’t translate into trusting that restaurant as a good restaurant or that car dealership is worth going to, despite the amount of its social media signals.
- People are twice more likely to trust the information or the recommendations that they get through reviews, than social media likes or follows.
- The other main thing that we know is that reviews really drive website traffic, but what does that mean?
- When people read reviews, they tend to click through to the website or the business. For example, you are looking for a new dentist and start reading reviews. If you see that the reviews are positive, or align with your personal preferences, you’re more likely going to click on the dentist’s website. The more clicks the dentist receives from its review sites, the more eyeballs, and therefore, the more business and revenue it will generate.
- One of the biggest takeaways from this webinar is that reviews drive revenue. The more reviews you have, the healthier your business will be. One of the most important studies in the reputation management industry comes from the Harvard Business School. The study came out in 2011, and it states that a one star difference in your average rating – on the five star rating system – can result in a 5 to 9% swing in revenue. So if you can move up from a 3 stars to a 4 stars, you’re going to see a nice healthy increase in revenue. Conversely, if you drop down a star rating that would negatively impact your revenue.
- Second, 90% of consumers now say that their buying decisions are influenced by online reviews. When people read reviews on a site like Yelp, they pay attention to the sentiment of those reviews. So they’ll avoid locations that have bad reviews, and will choose locations with good reviews.
- We’re influenced by what we read in those reviews. 4 out 5 consumers now say that they will reverse a purchasing decision after reading negative reviews.
- Reviews are absolutely critical in terms of attracting customers and keeping customers loyal to your brand. A review management tool delivers excellent return on investment, or ROI for you.
- Consider a product like ReviewTrackers to grow your reviews and effectively manage the reviews written on the web, since reviews directly impact revenue.
- This is where you’re going to get good results for your business in terms of bottom line result. According to SearchEngineLand, 83% of SEO professionals believe that managing online reviews absolutely delivers good return on investment, or ROI, and 61% of those SEO pros believe businesses should ask customers for reviews.
- So, it’s very important to get in the habit of remaining consistent when asking for reviews from your customers.
- One of the things we’ve also noticed is that the different ratings that you get on reviews provide different insights for your business. For example, the one and two star reviews provide helpful insight into any improvements you can make to enhance the customer experience. Those reviews are the most helpful for you in terms of learning about what trends that require more focus.
- You can find these trends and insights across your reviews’ different star ratings with the help of ReviewTrackers. Our software provides really helpful tools for managing those reviews, like the keyword search feature.
- The keyword search features allows businesses to drill down into a group of reviews that has a particular keyword. While searching the content of the reviews, in the review management page of our platform, you can pull out the insight or trends across your customer generated reviews really easily.
- It’s absolutely critical that you secure your brand and build your reputation by managing the reviews that are posted on your review sites.
- Reviews are your online reputation. Reviews on review sites allow potential customers to learn more about how the business interacts and engages with its current customers, for better or worse.
- A large problem with managing your review reputation is it that it’s very difficult to monitor all the review sites that are out there, especially if you receive multiple reviews a day or week. Add multiple locations, and it’s all the more difficult.
- It’s also very difficult to generate new reviews for many businesses. Review data can be hard to consolidate, and typically there’s no notification process from review sites.
- ReviewTrackers addresses each of these issues. How? We have four solutions: timely notifications, intelligent reporting features, daily scanning of review sites, and our review request tool.
- Review alerts by email can be customized to your preferences for timely notifications.
- Intelligent reports of the review data, which can be easily downloaded in a PDF or Excel file, and shared with your team.
- We also scan over 50 review sites daily across various industries like legal, automotive, healthcare, and hospitality, and pull any new reviews automatically into your account. Our review management platform consolidates all the reviews, along with a few workflow management tools, like marking a review status as responded or not responded.
- Finally, we can help you get more reviews with our review request tool. It’s an email tool built in to the product that allows you to quickly send an email out to one person, or multiple people to ask them to write a review on a site like Google+, Yelp, TripAdvisor, or any others in your industry.
- In one case, our review request tool helped one of our clients increase the amount of reviews received in one month to the next month by 400%!
- We also have an intelligent feedback tool that you can use within our platform. It helps minimize the risk of negative reviews to your business. It’s an email template, you can send out to a customer that asks one simple question: “How likely is it that you would recommend the business?” with a 0 to 10 scoring range, 0 been unhappy and 10 been ecstatic.
- Dependant on the score, the customer is either asked to leave internal feedback or is encouraged to leave an online review. For example, if a customer selects any number 0-6, then he or she is asked to leave internal feedback. The business can then follow up with that customer accordingly to address any concerns or answer any questions to help alleviate their issue. If a customer selects any number 7-10, then he or she is encouraged to leave a review on a review site.
- With the feedback response, the business can work with that customer to resolve their issue but it does not result in a negative review winding up online.
- The intelligent feedback tool functions like a filtering mechanism to help you evaluate the sentiment of the experience. To help you increase reviews and capture feedback when necessary. With this tool, you’re effectively managing customer feedback.
- With that being said, today we would like to offer you a trial of the ReviewTrackers platform.
- With online review monitoring you have two choices: You can manually check all the review sites related to your business every few days or weeks, or you can automate the process with a tool like ReviewTrackers. If you manually track your online reviews, you may miss reviews, which could lead to a lapse in response time. With ReviewTrackers, you can be notified by email as soon as we identify a new review.
- As we discussed before you will also get the review request tool to start growing your positive online reviews immediately.
- There is absolutely no risk to trying our system, since the first two weeks are free.
- So I encourage you to go to http://rtrack.co/webinartrial to sign up for a trial of ReviewTrackers to get started right away.
- Also, don’t forget to mark your calendars for the next webinar! Wednesday, August 12 at 1pm CST. The webinar will cover best practices to get positive reviews for your business.
- Thank you so much! I’d be happy to open the Q&A up and answer any questions you may have.