Your customers can be your biggest advocates - or your worst detractors. While word of mouth is still undeniably a powerful tool, most of your customers are turning to online review sites to share their thoughts and opinions.
Below we’ve listed the top online review sites your business should be visible on.
Google is without a doubt the most powerful search engine in the world. If someone is searching for your business, it’s likely that Google will be their first port of call. Google has a range of powerful tools and resources for small businesses, but while you may have filled in your location, opening hours and website on Google My Business, you shouldn’t forget that it’s also a popular place for customers leave reviews.
One of the key features of Google reviews is that your average star rating from Google, along with a link through to the written reviews, often appears on the right-hand side of Google’s search page. As this may be one of the first times prospective customers can see what others think of you with you, it’s important you curate your Google reviews.
Google doesn’t let you respond to reviews if you haven’t registered your business with them and set up a Google My Business account. So whether you want to say thank you or apologise you’ll need set this up before you can do so.
Over 70 million people have turned to Trustpilot to voice their opinions about businesses they’ve interacted with. One of the stand out features of Trustpilot, however, is the way it handles spam or fake reviews.
Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for a disgruntled competitor to try and tarnish a business’s reputation by leaving a false, negative review online. On other sites, these can be notoriously hard to remove, which can be disheartening given the impact this could have on your business.
Trustpilot offers a fair, impartial service – ensuring your true customer’s voices can be heard. They also offer plenty of features and widgets that allow you to share your glowing reputation with prospective customers.
All over the world and across all age brackets, people without a Facebook account are now few and far between. Over 34 million people in the UK use the social media giant, and for small businesses, Facebook works rather differently to other review sites.
Facebook allows for a unique dialogue between a business and its customers in a way other review sites don’t. As well as simply responding to reviews from your Facebook business page, you can engage with customers more organically and on a more regular basis.
Facebook’s recommendation feature allows users to ask their friends for suggestions in their area, whether it’s the best place in town for a coffee or a trusted mechanic to carry out an MOT. This means building up a loyal customer following through Facebook could have a knock-on effect on it being recommended using this feature.
Yelp is one of the biggest customer review websites around, with an average of 170 million users per month leaving 148 million reviews.
Listing on Yelp has also been known to help businesses perform better in search rankings, making it easier for people to find you.
As with Google, you’ll need to have a registered account in order to interact with your customers' comments.
It’s a common misconception that TripAdvisor is a site solely for restaurants. But this would be a mistake for any small business providing hospitality, entertainment or other customer experiences. If your business falls into one of these categories, your TripAdvisor listing needs to be a top priority.
270 users post to TripAdvisor every minute, and for many tourists and travellers, it has become the go-to site to check for all aspects of their visit to a new place.
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