The Online Reviews That Matter…
Where should you focus on getting your online reviews? There are so many different review websites to choose from, and it can be difficult to know where you should focus your efforts.
Here are the 3 most important online review websites that every small business should focus on.
Why You Need Them:
If you are a business owner, or a business professional of any kind, your potential customers are going to research you online. One of the most common places to do this is on LinkedIn because it is a site specifically built for stalking business professionals online.
The key here is to overwhelm the stalker. The more LinkedIn recommendations you have, the fewer anybody is going to read. Currently, I only have 16, so most people will probably read at least 3 of my recommendations.
My goal is to get to 100 LinkedIn recommendations.
If you have 100 LinkedIn recommendations, nobody who is stalking you is going to read a single recommendation, they are just going to see that number and believe you are awesome.
How to Get LinkedIn Recommendations:
- Ask: just ask your LinkedIn connections to recommend you, and send them the link (URL) to do it.
- Write: just start writing LinkedIn recommendations for your connections on LinkedIn. 1 out of every 12 will recommend you back.
Why You Need Them:
If LinkedIn is the website for stalking business professionals, then Yelp is the website for stalking business organizations.
Whenever someone is stalking you, or your business online, they are almost always going to be using a search engine to do it. Most of the time that search engine is going to be Google, and they are just going to do a Google search on “your business name reviews.”
Your Yelp business page will almost always be one of the first search results returned for that query. You should try to get at least five (5-star) reviews on Yelp.
How to Get Yelp Reviews:
The easiest way is to just ask your friends. If you are in a networking group, then just ask the people in your networking group to give you a Yelp review. But you have to make it super easy for them so actually take the time to email the link to your Yelp page to them.
Google My Business Reviews
Why You Need Them:
Your Google Business page is the most important place for your business to get online reviews. Here’s why…
You can see that all 3 of the local businesses above have rating stars by them. If only one of those businesses had rating stars by it, which business do you think would get the click or phone call?
Just getting into the Local 3-Pack for your search term will increase your website traffic and number of phone calls to your business.
Getting 5-10 Google business reviews will increase your click through rate, and the likelihood that you will appear in the Local 3-Pack.
No other review website will have a greater effect on the amount of money your business makes every month than Google My Business.
How to Get Google Business Reviews:
- Do a Google Search for “Your Business + City”
- Copy the resulting URL and email it to past customers and friends who are willing to give you a 5 star review
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General Online Review Acquisition Strategy
This is really about being proactive in setting your online reputation. If you want to see my next article about online reputation management and how to deal with bad online reviews, then be sure to subscribe to the blog through push notifications or rss so that you don’t miss it.
You should start your online review acquisition by focusing on getting at least 5-10 Google Business reviews.
Once you have your 5-10 Google Business reviews, then you should focus on getting 5-10 Yelp reviews.
LinkedIn recommendations should be your next focus. Shoot for 10-100 LinkedIn recommendations.
What About Facebook Reviews?
Facebook reviews are very easy to get. Most of your friends will already be on Facebook and you can just email the link to your Facebook page to them. However, they are not very important (yet) in terms of increasing the amount of money your business makes every month.
What About Industry Specific Review Websites?
Always focus on getting Google Business, Yelp reviews. LinkedIn reviews are nice to have.
Once you have 5-10 of each of those three, then you should start focusing on your industry specific review websites.
I work with a lot of real estate professionals, and one of the most important places to get reviews in that niche is Houzz.com.
Being a law firm SEO consultant, I end up working with a lot of attorneys. Lawyers should try to get at least 5 reviews on AVVO.com, and then switch to a few of the major lawyer directories like: Justia, FindLaw, lawyerratingz.com.
A good way to decide where you should focus on getting your reviews is to just do a Google search for “your business name reviews” and see which websites come up. Then go get reviews there.
Secret Ninja Online Review Hack (Dealing with Bad Reviews Article preview)
There is an easy way to control your online reputation and to ensure that anybody who is looking for your online reviews only finds the reviews you want them to see.
Just create a page on your website titled Reviews. The URL structure will look like this:
Meta Title: Your Business Name Customer Reviews
Meta Description: Actual customers review and recommend your business name.
H1 Title: Your Business Name Reviews
Now whenever someone does a Google search to find your reviews, the first search result is going to be a page on your own website where you personally selected what reviews to show.
That’s a little Ninja Online Rep management. More to come in a later article. Until then, go get some reviews.