90% of customers will read an online review, before patronising a business. 88% of customers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. Reviews can make a break a business, and it has been shown that good reviews can have a positive influence on revenue, while bad ones have a negative influence.
But here’s the catch. People tend to leave reviews more often when they have a negative experience. That means your business might have more negative reviews compared to positive ones, even if your service/product is generally good.
That means you’ll need to find ways to get more positive reviews in. Here’s how you can encourage more positive reviews for your business.
1) Integrate review requests into your operations
It’s easy to forget asking for a review when the times are busy, and even harder to get your staff to remember to do it. That’s why its important to integrate these requests into your operations. For example, after providing a service, you might want to get the customer to leave a review before he/she leaves your shop. Or perhaps send an email over a few days later. For high-ticket items, it might be a good chance to follow-up to check on the customer’s satisfaction with the product, and to grab a review after a certain period of time.
There are many softwares and CRM systems available that can help you automate this process. It’s also important to include this phase in staff training. The accumulated reviews will pay off over time.
2) Give customers different avenues for reviews
Perhaps your customers aren’t on Facebook. That’s OK, you can still get their reviews though hardcopy, email, 3rd party app and so on. Creating different avenues for your customer lets them choose the option that creates the least resistance for them, thus increasing the chance you’ll get a positive review.
3) Add an incentive
If your customers loved your service, they’ll definitely be happy to get an additional 10% off the next time they purchase from you. Instant gratification works even better. A simple gift or immediate discount would brighten up their day, and leave you with a glowing review. You don’t have to ask them for 5 stars, the chances of them doing so with an incentive is high.
4) Be personal
Nothing beats the personal touch. Customers don’t just want to be treated well, they want to be treated as individuals. Taking the time to know your customers leaves you with a lifetime of returns. Once that initial relation is built, a simple review is but a small matter.
5) Share previous reviews
Humans are social creatures, and thus we love doing what the others are doing. By showing that you already have a list of positive reviews on your website and social media platforms, it’s easy for your customer to add one more to the list.