Why are customer reviews so important? Whether it’s a Google review, a Yelp review, a DemandForce review or more, what makes these online assessments so valuable? The answer is simple: reviews build trust.
In fact, 73% of consumers say positive customer reviews make them trust a business more, and 79% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. It’s clear to see the power of good online reviews, but how do you go about making this customer review system work the best for you? Read on for some tips on how to make the most of your online customer reviews.
4 Easy Tips to Make Your Online Customer Reviews Work for Your Auto Shop
1. Just ask. Driving reviews can be as difficult as it is important, but the best way to get started is to simply start asking! When a customer is standing in front of you thanking you for a job well done, kindly ask them if they would be willing to leave you a review online. Make sure there is an easy path leading to your most important review websites (Google+ and Yelp). Have these links easily accessible on your website, include them in your email signature, etc.
2. Respond to negative reviews. Use negative reviews as an opportunity to show consumers that you’re listening, that you care, and that you’re willing to right your wrongs when a customer leaves your shop unhappy. You can do this by responding to the review in a gracious, timely manner, acknowledging the negative feedback and offering to look into the problem or find a solution. Potential customers are more forgiving to bad reviews when they can see that the shop owner is listening, wants to help, or has a different side to the story (such as if the reviewer left the bad review for the wrong auto repair shop!) Always remember to leave your name and position in the company along with your response. In cases when a review doesn’t meet the platform’s guidelines (when vulgar language is used, for instance) look for the option to “flag” the review, and it may be removed altogether.
3. Be professional. Make sure your main review websites (especially Google+ and Yelp) include correct business information (address, website, phone number), and relevant and optimized descriptions, content and photos. This is as much a part of your online reputation and branding as the actual reviews themselves!
4. Be honest. Google, along with many of the other big online customer review websites, have systems in place to help filter out testimonials that look suspicious. Never, ever offer a discount or promotion in turn for leaving a review – at least not in writing, as review filters can find the source of any review. Doing so can put you at risk for long-term penalties, especially by Google.
Other actions to avoid customer review penalties:
- Having multiple reviews come from the same computer or IP address
- Having an out-of-the-ordinary amount of reviews left in the same time period
- Having reviews left from the location of your business
Just remember, you’ll be better off in the long run if your reviews are organic, honest and consistent. So what are you waiting for? Start collecting good Google reviews and Yelp reviews for your automotive business today!