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As you learned last week, Google is one of the most important review platforms on the Internet. Any positive reviews you garner there will have a direct, positive impact on any searcher’s impression of your business.
Long story short,Google My Business (GMB) Reviews are absolutely necessary for your company’s sales and marketing. You may be wondering how exactly you get started gathering such customer evaluations.
Luckily, connecting your customers’ genuine opinions of your business to your company’s online GMB profile is as simple and easy for you to implement as it's for your customers to complete. Here’s how to begin:
Train your Team
Start by educating your team on the vital role that customer reviews play in the company’s sales and marketing. It's surprising how much a little understanding can help everyone stay on the same page. In addition, communicating the importance of reviews also serves as a reminder for staff to follow-through with implementation.
A recent study found that 63% of consumers are more likely to make a purchase from a site that has some type of customer reviews over one that hasn’t made any such attempt. In fact, the Spiegel Research Center reveals that the likelihood of a product getting purchased increases 270% when a company has just 5 reviews.
It may be helpful to begin by training customer-facing staff members on when and how to ask for a review. Some possible times may include:
Make sure to have a vision and system in place for collecting customer evaluations so that any potential reviews aren’t overlooked.
It’s also important to provide training on what to do if you receive a negative review. If you do, show that you’re taking it seriously. We always recommend a quick, professional response that shows you appreciate their honesty and would like to learn more about their specific issue.
Don’t forget: even negative reviews represent a golden opportunity to make meaningful improvements to your offerings and customer experience.
This is by far the number one most important thing to do when building up your company reviews: just ask!
Despite what we know about the dramatic influence that reviews have on another’s purchase choices, most Americans do NOT leave product reviews on a regular basis. In fact, nearly 50% of the people surveyed said they do not leave restaurant reviews, and 38% admitted that they NEVER leave reviews on products or services.
To many, leaving a review simply does not cross their mind, while others do not think it's worth their time.
Take any and every opportunity you can to ask your customers to leave a review of your product or service. Let them know that you’d really appreciate it if they could spare a few minutes to help other clients find your business.
If you're apprehensive about gathering reviews, it may be helpful to begin by asking for reviews from those customers with whom you have a close, positive relationship. As you gain momentum and confidence from these easy wins, gathering reviews will become a normal and natural part of your company culture and system.
Show your Customers
Some of your customers will be able to leave a review as if it were second nature, while others may have no idea where to even find a review. Make sure that you have a very detailed example of how to leave a Google My Business Review on your profile so that any and all customers can easily leave their evaluation.
You may also want to provide a little guidance about what to include in their review. Do you prefer long reviews, or short ones? Do you care more about the star rating or the actual statement they include? What competitive differentiators would you be happy for customers to talk about? Think a little bit about what a great review would look like, and communicate some of those thoughts to help get the ball rolling. For example, you might say, “Our company prides itself on customer service. We’d really appreciate it if you could share your experience with our customer service.”
Send a Friendly Reminder
Everyone is busy, trying to juggle a handful of different things at the same time. More than likely, your customer has at least ten other items on their daily to-do list when you solicit a review. It may take them a few days to actually jump on and leave a review. Or they may forget completely.
Life happens, so make sure you do your part by following-up with them after a week or two. Everyone needs a friendly reminder here and there.
Respond to Reviews
Those customers reviewing your product or service want to know that their comments have been seen and heard. They want to know that their time and efforts have not been lost in the mix of other prospects or customers.
Develop a process for responding to all reviews in a timely manner.
Google does not allow companies to hand pick which reviews will be shown, giving a well-balanced and impartial view of your business.
Make sure to address any complaints or criticism with professionalism. In such cases, it may be helpful to have a brief list of acceptable replies that can be tweaked to each unique situation. Not only will this help your team respond more quickly, it also provides an opportunity to move the conversation away from the Google My Business platform.
Simple, yet so often overlooked, it's important to always express appreciation to those customers who took the time out of their busy schedule to leave your company a review. Gratitude goes a long way in feeling seen, heard, and validated.
So, what are you waiting for? Set up and implement a system that works for you. Make it a goal to gather 5 to 10 reviews over the next month. As you gain confidence and momentum, more reviews will come.
If you’d like more support with implementing a Google Review request system, you might want to explore Calldrip. Our unique tool, Review, makes it easier for you to gather feedback from your happy customers and automatically push that feedback to important review sites, including Google.
It works by sending your customers to top review sites to share their feedback at the conclusion of a phone meeting. You can request reviews automatically or manually - it’s up to you! Calldrip Review also includes a dashboard so that you can see collected reviews at a glance and analyze for any trends.
Michelle is the Content Marketing Manager at Calldrip. When she's not producing great content she enjoys reading, running, traveling, and spending time with her family.
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