Online Customer Reviews Part 1 – What They Are, Why They Work
Customers, those looking for a product or service, depend on their smart phones even more than their five sense as they choose which business to patronize. A successful business has a positive online presence to draw the customer traffic it needs to prosper. This requires a high local internet search ranking and a good reputation. Customers need to be able to find your business and prefer it over others competing for their business. The surest route to high ranking and good reputation is through online customer reviews.
Google, the dominant search engine and online map, has a customer review feature with every business listing that appears on the right-hand side of the search result. The reviews are prominently displayed with every business brought up in a search result. It is as important to have your business come up with good customer reviews on a smart phone as to have an attractive store front or valet parking. Google also lists reviews found other places on the web, so reviews on sites such as Yahoo or Facebook are valuable as well.
A good customer review posted to your business tells Google that 1) your business is relevant to the searches of other customers looking for the products or services you offer in the area around your location, and 2) that your business has been preferred by those who have actually used your product or service. A five-star review of your business translates into higher ranking of your business in searches for your product or service and shows, with a line of bright stars, that your business has been preferred by those who have patronized it.
Good reviews of your business build the positive presence on Google your business needs without cost, because Google, to stay on top has to deliver the most relevant information, as effectively as possible, every time. To reach that goal, Google has devised ways to sort everything it lists to deliver the most useful (relevant) match as close to the top of each search result. A positive customer review tells Google that your business delivers the product or service in a particular search and that the product or service your business delivers is rated well by your customers. Google has to deliver results that make its customers happy: to do that, it has directed them to products or services that will make them happy. Good customer reviews get Google’s customers to you.
Next: how to get good customer reviews.