Your customers base their purchases on reviews made by other people. Often reviews get posted on Yelp and Google My Business, and receiving good reviews often leads to repeat and new customers. On the flipside, even though getting a bad review can hurt your business, these can also be an opportunity for improvement and consumer outreach. The question is, how do you get online reviews?
A Great Experience
The easiest way to get good reviews is to offer a great experience. Great service, good food, and a clean environment are all things customers look for. A great experience often improves the chances that a customer will leave a review.
Ask for Reviews
It might be a silly thought, but most consumers don't post reviews because they aren't asked to. The easiest people to ask are the family and friends who stop by. Next, ask your customers. If you’re able to email a receipt, remind them to leave a review on the email.
Add Easy-to-Use Review Links
If you have a website, you should have easy-to-use links to review sites on the front page. This allows customers to not only look at your other reviews but gives them easy access to the review sites. The easier it is for the consumer, the better your chances for a review.
Simple signs are another easy way to get reviews. Clear sticky signs can be placed on windows and doors. Include review sites on the menu and promotional material. Even remind people to leave a review in radio ads.
Respond to Reviews
Customer outreach is a very important business aspect. A simple thanks to a review lets people know you’re aware of their efforts. Even if you receive a bad review, you can minimise it by addressing the issue and possibly turning those negative feelings into positive ones. However, there will be some customers who won't be satisfied no matter what you do.
Smartphones have made it even easier to leave reviews. With mapping apps, you can remind customers to leave a review when they are in range of your business. SMS based apps allow consumers to leave text-based reviews.
Show Some Appreciation
In many cases, you can entice customers to leave a review. Offering a free service or prize draw for following a review link can hike your review count up. Just make sure to read the terms of service for the review sites, some enticements are frowned upon in certain review forums.