Businesses today have many online tools that can help them engage and interact with their customers. From professional web design to social media there are a wide variety of platforms out there to inform customers of the products and services you offer. However, there is one commonly overlooked element that holds incredible value when it comes to boosting SEO and gaining the trust of potential customers – Google reviews.

Why SEO Matters

Before we get into the details about Google reviews and how they can help build trust and boost your SEO, it’s important to review the benefits of SEO. Optimizing your website is never a quick and easy process. It’s actually an ongoing effort that will provide you with significant value when it comes to leads and conversions.

By optimizing your website, content, and blogs, you can rank higher on Google search engine results which in turn increase website visitors. However, keywords aren’t the only thing that helps you rank higher. Google takes into account your Google My Business page and the reviews left by your customers that share their experience with your company.

Why Google Reviews Matter

When people search for the products and services they need online, they often take the time to read reviews left by other people before they make a purchase. In fact, Google reviews hold incredible value because people want honest feedback from real people like them. If someone takes the time to share their experience with your business, other people trust what they say. It’s almost like getting a recommendation from a family member or friend.

Reviews significantly impact the rating of your business. The more positive reviews you get, the higher your rating will be. If you don’t have enough reviews or have a low business rating, people may overlook your business and go with one of your competitors instead.

Like we discussed in a previous blog, the easiest ways to get customers to leave reviews it to ask for them! The easiest ways to do this are by:

  • Asking for reviews in person.
  • Encourage customer check-ins.
  • Ask for reviews via email.
  • Add a call to action to your website.
  • Hand out business cards, flyers, and print ads.
  • Hang visible signs at your business.

Keep in mind that if a customer had a positive experience with your company, they are often willing to share it with others. They just need to be reminded. By using the suggestions mentioned above, you will provide them with easy ways to get their honest feedback and highest recommendations.

Boosting SEO With Google Reviews

Can Google reviews boost your SEO? Absolutely! Positive feedback from your customers informs Google that you have a trustworthy business which, in turn, provides you with more authority. This is especially true when it comes to local SEO because it will provide you with a higher ranking in Google Places.

Google takes into consideration many factors when it ranks sites in places. These include:

  • A customer’s location and distance to their search.
  • How many reviews your business has.
  • Your Google My Business profile.
  • Keywords naturally used by customers in their reviews.
  • Your SEO optimized website.

Other Review Platforms

While Google is one of the main places to find and read reviews, there are other platforms where people leave reviews. That’s why it’s just as important to create a business account on other search engines as well. This will provide potential customers with a better chance of finding your business online, especially if they use another site. Some of these platforms include:

  • Facebook
  • Yelp
  • Angie’s List
  • Better Business Bureau
  • Glassdoor
  • Home Advisor

Best Practices For Responding To Reviews

Generating reviews is only part of the SEO process. How you respond to reviews is just as important. In fact, Google really likes it when you do. By simply saying “Thank You” to your customers who took the time to write a review informs Google that you are doing a good job at providing customers with the best experience possible. Even more, you can take advantage of responding to reviews by including SEO keywords to help further boost your SEO efforts. However, you never want to leave the same cookie-cutter response for every review. Instead, it’s important to customize your responses as much as possible. Take the time to thank a customer individually and talk about how much you enjoyed helping with sincere appreciation.

Responding To Negative Reviews

It’s important to remember that no matter how hard you try to provide your customers with a positive experience, you cannot please everyone. Sooner or later, every company gets a bad review. While a negative review can seem like a bad thing, it’s important not to overreact when you respond. Instead, take the time to reply with a comment that highlights the bright side of the situation. Never respond to negativity with negativity. Why? Other people are going to read what you have to say. Make sure you offer a sincere apology and try to offer a solution. This will provide people with a positive impression rather than a negative one. In fact, many customers that leave a negative review will change their review and leave a higher rating when you do your best to resolve whatever issue they may have experienced.

Professional Web Design

At Thrive Web Designs, we work hard to provide you with the best possible tips and online practices when it comes to your business and professional web design. If you need help optimizing your website for SEO and maintaining your content and social media marketing, we can provide you with the best advice and services possible. For more information and to learn more, contact us at (208) 391-2504 today.