Are online reviews costing you business?
Online reviews may be the last thing on your mind when it comes to attracting new business. However, that can be one of the easiest ways to attract new clients. This series of articles will give you the knowledge of how you can grow your business using online reviews.
Let’s start with the basics:
- 90% of consumers read online reviews before visiting a business. Not having online reviews immediately removes you as an option in the consumers mind.
- 88% trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation. They are referred as “social proof”. Customers who are shopping around will trust you more if they see that others have had a good experience with your business.
- It makes you more visual online. Reviews can help boost your ranking on Google making you more visible when people are searching for a mortgage broker.
- An uplift in sales usually follows strong online reviews. This is a result of the previous three points listed here.
Below are the 3 steps to start getting online reviews and drive business.
1. First, get set-up for reviews
If a potential customer cannot find your business online, you risk losing their business before you even had a chance to meet them. It’s that simple.
The main channel where your customers can leave a review for your business is on Google My Business. If they search related words like “mortgage broker” in your area on Google maps your business will appear. Google Maps will display your star rating, location, business hours, and some more helpful information.
Reviews also help your search ranking as well! The higher your business is rated the more it will help your business appearing on the Google Search results.
In short: Google likes reviews, and the more you get the better you could rank.
Plus, Google My Business gives you the ability to respond to reviews and comments about your business directly with your clientele. So you can thank them for taking the time to leave you a review.
Create your free online business profile with Google My Business here
2. Next, start getting positive reviews, lots of them
Any time you have a happy customer, send them an email thanking them for their business, and include a link to your Google My Business page. The best time to do this is after a positive interaction such as closing the deal or finding a great rate for your client. You can reach out to your social media network as well as they are more likely to be a fan already.
Still having a hard time? Add an incentive like a gift card to a coffee shop for every review in a specific time period.
3. Finally, use reviews to promote your business, both online and offline!
Now that you’re getting positive reviews, it’s time to use them to your advantage! We’ve all seen those ads where a business claims “See why our customers give us 4.5 stars!” The reason is because advertising like that works! People seek companies that are respected and have happy clients.
Showcase your positive reviews and star rating on your website, all your social media platforms, and even in person at your office (e.g. sticker on your door with your star rating). Don’t be afraid to encourage prospects to go on Google and read your reviews. You can take this even further by sharing your latest reviews with prospects in your database.
Bonus – Reach out to those who left you review and thank them. Not only that, if they hear directly from you, they’re more likely to recommend and talk about you to their friends/family.