Get Reviews For Your Business

Get Reviews For Your Business

I hate that I have to say this… but don’t ever, ever pay for reviews. Don’t offer customers free or discounted products or services for positive reviews. Referrals are a great source of business, especially for small businesses who cannot afford big ad placements or large social media agencies. The problem come in – how can a business owner get a customer to come back and take the time to leave an honest review?

Don’t be shy. Ask customers for reviews.

Before a customer has a chance to leave the store – are you asking them to leave some feedback about their experience? Many businesses still have paper cards or notepads for customers to leave feedback – which is a vital source of information – but if you have confidence that your customers are satisfied – you are better off getting that information online – in a place it can be seen by others and shared further, expanding your reach, and, in the case of good reviews, improve the public perception of your business online.

But how to do this while a customer is physically in front of you? You could set up a dedicated computer (tablet, laptop, or desktop) to allow customers to leave immediate feedback about their experience. This, of course, needs to be properly set up, to ensure both your privacy, and that of your customers. You can of course contact me for more information about gathering reviews for your business with this method.

Use your existing (or future) newsletter.

Do you have a newsletter for customers? Remind past customers to leave positive feedback for their purchase or for your services within your newsletter, and link to the appropriate review service(s). If they are actively reading and engaging your newsletter, chances are they will be more than happy to leave a review (and a good one, at that).

Remind Customers to Review (Duh.)

Include links to your review services on paper receipts, if you are brick and mortar, and on email receipts and follow-ups, if you are an online store or utilize online invoicing/payments in any way. It goes without saying to also include these links on your website. Your customers are visiting your website – make it easy for them to leave reviews.

Another way to make sure clients can easily review your business is to generate a QR code for your review services, for use on print materials and menus, in the case of a restaurant, for example. Be sure to also include shortlinks as an alternative to the QR code – being that many people do not have immediate access to a QR app, it needs to be downloaded – a major downfall of the marketing tool, and something that may be keeping people from heading to your link – it may be easier for them to type a short link on their phone browser instead. Get free shortlinks through a site like bit.ly or goo.gl.

Pay attention and don’t be afraid of bad reviews.

As stated before, you should never ask for positive reviews. Just ask for honest reviews and feedback. You shouldn’t pay for reviews either. You can  offer prizes, discounts, and contest entries for leaving feedback, provided you do not require it to be positive.

Remember – the way you deal with your negative reviews online can be even more convincing to a potential customer to make the decision and go with you. Don’t be afraid of a negative review. It is simply a chance to prove how much you care about your customers. People want to know that you not only have an exceptional product or service – but that when something goes wrong – you will do whatever is in your power to make it right.

Of course, make sure to respond to all reviews, positive or negative. Show your appreciation for their honesty (if negative) or your gratefulness for their kind review and the time they took to leave it.

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Andrij Harasewych

Although I ended up graduating from Villanova University with a Bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering, a side passion of mine for the past decade has been business and marketing. After three years of working full time as a mechanical engineer, and part time as a freelancer, success in my freelance work motivated me to alter my path and focus fully on marketing.

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