21 Jun How Reviews Affect Your SEO And Online Success
Posted at 13:00h
If you care about your company’s success, you can’t ignore online reviews
Although negative feedback won’t lead to immediate failure, unanswered
negative reviews can have a negative long-term impact on your business. Anybody can find that review online. According to Search Engine Land
, 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
As it turns out, reviews also impact your Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
– the practice of formatting your website’s back end to attain higher rankings in search results – and your business success online.
Reviews Are One Of The Most Important Ranking Factors In Search
There are several factors contributing to reviews’ influence on search rankings, including quantity and diversity. Review signals are thought to contribute roughly 10% of the materials used to determine rankings.
The main reason reviews have become so critically important is because consumers use them
. After combing through reviews, their minds are made up fairly quickly, and the delay between research and purchase is small.
While other ranking signals contribute to your position in search rankings, ignoring online reviews is a grave mistake that can results in your demotion in search results. Long term, your business will suffer.
Reviews are also a ranking factor in Google Maps or Carousel results. To remain competitive in your field, you need to encourage customers to leave positive reviews for your business.
When People Google You, They Will See Reviews
Google a location (like a restaurant, bar or coffeehouse) in your area, and you will see a rating right under the name of the store. Users can also click on “Google reviews” to see what people have said about the business, both positive and negative.
For any location appearing in Google Maps, like a local business, this is a major consideration. The better your rating and reviews, the more likely people are to visit your store or choose to work with you. But if it appears as though a lot of people have had a negative experience with your business, they are more likely to view your operation as subpar or just unreliable.
Ultimately, it isn’t just your online reputation that’s affected – it’s your business’ success that’s going to be impacted!
The issue is not with negative reviews, because just about every business encounters an upset customer at some point. The issue is about how you respond
The worst thing you can do is:
- Not respond. Customers assume you don’t care if you don’t respond. This does not bode well for the future of your business, as the perception of the public will be that you can’t be bothered to deal with relevant issues.
- Get Aggressive. Fighting back is also a poor strategy. When you are aggressive with your responses, customers will become even more frustrated, and it will only serve to reinforce that you do not treat your patrons well.
The best strategy is to acknowledge the problem and to ask for an opportunity to redeem yourself in the customer’s eyes. Don’t beg for the opportunity, but politely ask if there’s something you can do to change their mind. Or, offer a discount, an exchange, or a gift card based on what went wrong.
Again, negative reviews are a fact of (internet) life. Reputation management isn’t about squashing out any voices that aren’t saying what you would like them to say. It’s about gracefully accepting constructive feedback and improving your business based on the experiences of your customers. Also remember to respond to reviews – but do so in a way that elevates the perception of your business.
If you need help with SEO or reputation management, take a moment to learn about our SEO and SEM services