We do it all year long – checking online reviews before choosing a restaurant, picking a plumber, or booking a hotel. But during the height of the holidays, those online reviews really, really matter. With the frenzy of retail activity, so too comes a frenzy of buyer’s fatigue. What to buy, where to buy, and who best to buy from become daily questions plaguing the seasonal shopper’s mind. Soothe this consumption overload by offering your customers easy and accessable answers to their daily shopping woes. How? By online reviews of course – most often the first impression a potential buyer has of your brand. Here’s why and how:
Online Reviews Impact Consumer Behavior
Simply put, user-generated reviews can be the lifeblood of your business, with 9 out of every 10 adults surveyed in our most recent report stating that they trust Internet-based reviews just as much as a personal recommendation (or warning) from a close friend, neighbor or colleague.
It’s also important to note that many people place a greater amount of trust in online reviews if there are “multiple reviews to read”, providing them with a way of averaging out the positive and negative comments so that they can form their own, personal opinion about both the validity of the reviews, and their perception of the subject business.
So, what do your online reviews say about your small business?
Managing Your Reviews = Managing Your Reputation
If you haven’t done so recently (as in, sometime during the last 48 hours), go ahead and ‘Google’ your business using your mobile device.
*Why use your smartphone to search? Because that’s what more and more consumers are doing, and therefore, it’s important for you to see just exactly what your clients and prospects are seeing online.
Scan through any online reviews that pop up. Are they positive, negative, or neutral? Do they sound ‘legit’, or does it look like your competition has been raging an online war against your business, one fake review at a time?
This holiday season, why not make a resolution to tune up your online reputation and deal with your reviews on sites like Yelp and Google? By being proactive, you can harness the power of consumer-generated online feedback to boost your business in a way that’s effective, immediate, and budget-friendly!
Yodle connects consumers to local businesses simply and cost-effectively through its online marketing platform. Yodle currently serves more than 45,000 small business customers. This blog is used as a forum to provide key company updates and milestones, and to discuss important industry and business trends. Learn more.