Google Reviews are crucial for your business credibility and SEO. Learn how to establish your online brand reputation with Google reviews.
In this article:
- Google Review Overview
- Why Are Google Reviews Important?
- How do I Get Google My Business Reviews?
- How do I Respond to Google Reviews?
- How do I Remove Fake Google Reviews?
What You Need to Know About Google Reviews
Google Reviews Overview
Have you ever chosen an establishment over others based on other people’s online reviews?
Google reviews work as it sounds. They allow customers to publicly post a review on Google about their experience with a business and its service and products.
Google Reviews are an integrated feature within Google My Business and Google Maps. To activate this feature, your brand must first have a Google My Business account to get listed and be visible for your customers to engage in. The better the review that you receive, the better your product or site traffic will.
Why are Google Reviews Important?
These are some of the reasons why Google reviews are important for businesses:
Google Reviews Improve Local Search Ranking
One of the main benefits of having positive online reviews is a boost in local search ranking. Local searches help businesses promote their products and services to local customers in real-time.
Typical local searches not only include information about “what” (name of the product, business category, and keywords) the site visitor is searching for but also the “where” information such as the city name, street address, and postal code.
Knowing how to improve your local SEO would make your business more visible and more accessible in the area your customers are actively searching for.
Google Reviews Build-up Credibility
For customers, Google reviews are as equally valuable as a word-of-mouth recommendation. Last year, 92% of consumers used the web to search for a local business, while 82% read online reviews for local establishments.
Reviews serve as a guide to properly evaluate businesses and make the right choice about products and services. As a business, you too can benefit from these reviews by hearing your customers’ feedback and making necessary improvements. Therefore:
Google Reviews Influence Conversions and Sales
Having positive online reviews validates customers’ interest when searching for a product or service. This eventually leads to foot traffic. Otherwise, if your business has bad reviews, it may drive customers away.
How do I Get Google My Business Reviews?
First off, your customers must have a Google account to leave a review. There are several ways to get your customers to leave a review. In this blog, we are going to guide you on how to do the new and easy way:
Step 1: Log in to you GMB Account
Step 2: Create a Profile Short Name
To create a profile short name, go to your GMB listing and then Menu, click ‘Info’ and ‘add the short name.’
Enter your short name (32 characters or less). If possible, this short name must be unique and similar to your business name.
Once approved, your short name will appear on your business profile.
Step 3: Get Reviews
Go to the Home page and click on the ‘Get More Reviews’ prompt. Please copy the link and send it to your customers. This will lead them to a page where they can leave reviews.
How do I Respond to Google Reviews?
Although you cannot control the reviews’ content, you have full control over how you will take it from there. Both positive and negative reviews impact your business so learn how to act on them accordingly:
How to Respond to Positive Reviews
- Express Appreciation and Be Specific. Avoid generic “thank yous” and mention the specific product or service that the customer liked.
- Be Timely. Try to respond as soon as you can. This shows that you are attentive and care about the customer’s experience.
- Keep it Short and Simple. Aside from saving time, this will save you from saying repetitive phrases.
- Provide Updates. Share information about your upcoming product, events, or sales promotion.
How to Respond to Negative Reviews
- Take a Step Back. Receiving negative feedback from customers can be upsetting, but don’t let emotions take over.
- Acknowledge the Issue. Put yourself in your customer’s shoes and recognize the issue. This will make the customer feel heard.
- Offer an Apology. Even if it is difficult, try to offer an apology and take responsibility for the issue. Making excuses will only make the situation worse. You may explain (if needed) if the review warrants it.
- Provide a Solution. Whether it’s compensation in the form of gift checks or discounts, offering a solution can make a difference in managing your online reputation.
How do I Remove Fake Google Reviews?
Fake reviews may spring several factors such as impersonation, conflict of interest, spam, or even rarely, honest mistakes, or off-topic reviews. Whatever the reason is, receiving a fake review is never good news and may affect your business and draw off potential customers.
To resolve this, you can try the following:
Respond to the Review
Keep your response brief and polite while addressing the issue. In some cases, not responding at all is the best alternative.
Flag the Review
Click on the flag icon in the specific review. Clicking on the icon will take you to the “Report a policy violation” page, where you will enter your company email and select the type of violation.
Wait for 1-2 days for feedback from the Google team.
Escalate Fake Review Removal
You can escalate this issue on the Google My Business Help page if Google’s service representatives deny your request for fake review removal.
This is where you will provide information about the issue, a text block where you can write details, and a section to leave your contact information if the Google team reaches out.
Google review is a feature of Google My Business that you can take advantage of. The key is to learn how to manage your online presence to give your business a sense of credibility and a higher SEO ranking.
Let us help you manage your ads and listings. Locl helps millions of businesses drive billions in additional rev and bring clarity to a messy marketing world. We use Google My Business and Google Maps to help drive more customers into your door.
Businesses can sign up for Locl for free with their Google My Business account, no credit card needed, and start using it right away. Click here to start.
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