How to Raise Brand Awareness for your Local Business?
We have heard it over and over again, yes, online reviews are extremely important to a business’ bottom line. Why? This is because 90% of customers claim that their purchasing decisions are based on what they read online. It doesn’t matter whether it is for an online product or for a brick-and-mortar store, online reviews matter. Especially in this digital age, many savvy consumers even check a product’s review while in the store shopping ( the power of omni-channel).
Regardless of whether you are starting out a new business or are already in business, online reviews are something to consider as they have a major impact on affecting the success of your company. Three reasons why businesses should consider implementing online reviews to their website or claim a listing on a review site:
- Rankings on local search engines
- Visibility of your business
- Consumer’s purchasing intent
The words and citations used in the online reviews are critical in affecting on-site optimization. According to Moz, online reviews make up 10% of Google and other search engines on ranking results. This ranking includes general ranking factors, specific ranking factors, and even negative ranking factors). You can learn more about local search ranking factors here.
Often, when consumers search for reviews, for example, “Japanese restaurant reviews”, there will be a list of review sites that pops up. For food and beverage, often Yelp, Foursquare and Google+ are the first few that appears on the first page a Google search result. There is also a Google Knowledge panel where it appears on the right side of a search result. On this Knowledge Panel, there is often a “more review” indication where consumers may look up more reviews on different social media sites.
Some of the few important review platforms that are out there are:
- Google+ Local
- Angie’s list
HubSpot has a more extensive list of review sites which also includes B2B companies.
Now that you know what review sites are available, next, what you will need to do is to
- Add your review profiles on your website,
- Ask your customers to review you (offer incentive if possible), and
- If you are using Yelp, request a “Find us on Yelp” from Yelp and obtain your People Love Us on Yelp” sticker.
Online reviews are extremely influential on consumers’ decision-making process. If you haven’t already done so, hopefully, this article can get you started in initiating the process.