Why it’s Important to Get Customer Reviews
Online customer reviews play an important role in building the credibility and reputation of your service business. Whether you are asking for reviews to add to your website, Facebook Business page, Google My Business listing, or another platform, they can provide real benefits.
According to Bright Local, the average consumer reads 10 reviews before feeling able to trust a business.
Positive reviews can encourage loyalty and advocacy of existing customers. By genuinely expressing their satisfaction with your services it will help to attract new customers.
Social proof is a psychological phenomenon that makes other people want to mimic what the majority are doing. If your business is the popular choice with many people appearing to like and use your services this will motivate others to hire you.
Getting reviews provides the right trust signals to convince people to choose your business over the competition.
Another benefit of getting reviews is it gives your website an upvote on search engines like Google. These help overall SEO (search engine optimization) and drive more organic search traffic to your website.
Overall, reviews can generate more customers and grow your bottom line.
Here are the best ways to ask customers for reviews for your service business:
When is it Appropriate to Ask for a Customer Review?
Deciding when to ask a customer for a review requires some strategic planning.
In most cases, it’s appropriate to ask a customer for a review after the job is completed to the client’s satisfaction. Don’t jump the gun by asking too soon.
Ensure that you ask happy customers since an unhappy customer likely won’t leave a positive review. The benefits of asking for a review outweigh the cons. So, always ask!
To get more reviews, try incentivizing your customers to leave a review. Offer a discount code on a future service, enter a draw for a large prize, or offer gift cards.
However, beware that some platforms such as Yelp and Google frown upon businesses incentivizing customers for leaving a review. Ensure that you read the policies of the platform and abide by their rules.
Although, keep in mind that your own website is fair game for collecting and housing reviews. You can incentivize your customers all you want!
Make Asking for Customer Reviews Part of Your Business Culture
To prepare your service business to collect more reviews, include it as part of your company culture.
Create a training program for employees on how to ask for reviews. Teach them best practices, to increase their rate of success.
The easier it is, the more likely your team members will ask. Simplify the process for collecting reviews and provide your team with the right tools and support.
Develop a system or scorecard to keep track of reviews. To encourage your internal team to ask customers, entice them with incentives and rewards.
How to Ask for Customer Reviews in Person
One way to increase reviews is to ask your customers in person. Since you build rapport in person it may be easier to make the request face-to-face.
Asking in person can be more effective than email because you can get a response immediately (it won’t get lost in their inbox and forgotten about).
Especially if your customer compliments your service, it can be an opportune time to follow up by asking for a review.
Provide your customers with clear instructions for how they can leave a review. Follow up with specific details through an email, phone call or leaving them a card or flyer with directions. Tell customers exactly how long it will take to leave a review.
How to Ask for Customer Reviews Over Email
Another approach to getting more customer reviews is to ask over email.
When constructing your emails, ensure that you personalize your emails to avoid turning off your customers. Be polite and appreciative in your email copy.
Provide clear instructions for where and how to leave a review (on your website, on Google My Business, etc.). The more complicated the process, the less likely they will be to do you a favour and leave the review. Assure customers it won’t take a long time to leave a review.
To streamline asking for reviews, you can automate the process using an email campaign tool such as Mail Chimp or Sendinblue. Set it up to trigger an email asking customers for a review after the job is complete.
Try A/B testing your emails to customers. Experiment with plain text emails or HTML emails and see which type of customers respond to.The email tool can send auto reminders to ensure you customers don’t forget about leaving a review.
Write compelling email copy and always use clear calls to action to convert more customers.
How to Use Software to Get Positive Customer Reviews
Alternatively, use specialized review software such as Customer Lobby or GetMoreReviews which are designed to increase your reviews by doing outreach and management. They will use data to find untapped opportunities for reviews and as a result act as a revenue generator.
Meanwhile, service business software can house customer reviews and allow your customers to see which providers have the best reviews. You can then use this data to reach out to customers who have left positive reviews, and get them to leave a review on a business listing platform such as Google, Yelp or Facebook.
For instance, MarketBox can ask customers to rate their service provider after each appointment with a star rating. This information can be used to then target your happy customers and rectify problems with unhappy ones quickly, before they leave you a negative review.
Determining ways to ask customers for reviews has many benefits. From building your business’ online reputation to increasing sales, consider how you can get more customer reviews for your service business.