How to Increase Google Reviews: The Ultimate Guide for Businesses

How to Increase Google Reviews: The Ultimate Guide for Businesses

How to Increase Google Reviews: The Ultimate Guide for Businesses

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Getting more Google reviews is crucial for any business looking to build credibility and attract new customers online. However, asking customers to leave reviews can feel awkward or pushy. Believe me, I’ve been there.

After years of trial and error, I’ve learned some highly effective techniques to get more organic Google reviews without appearing desperate or skeevy.

In this comprehensive guide, I’ll share my favourite strategies on How to increase Google reviews for your business step-by-step.

Keywords: Increase, Google Reviews

Modified Description: The Ultimate Guide For Businesses To Increase Google Reviews.

Why Google Reviews Matter

Here’s the deal:

Online reviews are social proof that people love your business. They build trust and credibility with potential new customers browsing online.

In fact, according to BrightLocal, 91% of consumers read online reviews before visiting a business. And 88% of them trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.

But here’s the kicker:

Google reviews don’t just help your reputation. They also directly impact your local SEO and search visibility.

Google factors review count and sentiment into local search rankings. So, more positive reviews can help you rank higher in local pack and map listings.

It means more visibility in search and more new customers calling or walking through your door.

So, if you want to attract more customers online, increasing Google reviews need to be a top priority.

How to Increase Google Reviews:

Step 1: Make Sure Your GMB Listing Can Collect Reviews

Before anything else, you must ensure your Google My Business (GMB) listing is properly set up to collect and display reviews.

It sounds obvious. However, many businesses need to realize they must actively claim and verify their GMB listing to start aggregating reviews.

Here are the key steps involved:

  • Claim your listing: Search for your business on Google Maps. If your GMB listing appears, click “Own this business” to claim it. If not, you’ll need to create a new listing.
  • Flesh out your details: Include your address, phone number, website, business hours, photos, services, etc. The more complete your profile, the better.
  • Get verified: Google will send a postcard with a PIN code to your business address. Enter this code to verify your physical location. It is crucial for review collection.

You can accumulate customer reviews once your GMB listing is fully set up.

Step 2: Politely Ask Customers for Reviews

Here’s the truth:

Most customers won’t leave reviews unless you explicitly ask them to.

Even satisfied customers often think to wait to review your business online. You have to make the first move.

The key is to ask politely, not desperately. Refrain from begging for 5-star reviews. Just give a friendly nudge to happy customers.

Some good times to ask include:

  • After a positive in-store interaction
  • In your email newsletter or marketing campaigns
  • On your receipts or packaging slips
  • Via SMS/text message follow-ups

Here are some casual review request examples:

  • “Was everything satisfactory today? If so, we’d greatly appreciate a quick Google review.”
  • “Thanks for being a valued customer! Please consider leaving us a review on Google to help others find our business.”
  • “If you were pleased with your service, a Google review would mean the world to our small business.”

The key is keeping it low pressure while highlighting the benefits to other consumers.

Pro tip: Train employees to ask for reviews face-to-face during positive customer interactions. This personal touch can yield a review bonanza.

Step 3: Make Review Submission Easy

Here’s the reality:

The harder you make review submissions, the fewer reviews you’ll get.

That’s why you need to minimize friction for customers leaving Google reviews.

The easier you make it, the more reviews will roll in.

Some tips:

  • Share a direct review link: Don’t just link to your GMB listing. Generate a direct URL to your reviews page and share that.
  • Use a GMB widget: Embed a Google review widget directly on your website to let visitors review you without leaving your site.
  • Add review links across platforms: Include your Google review link in your email signature, website footer, social media bios, etc., for maximum exposure.
  • Follow up with reminders: If someone promises to review you but doesn’t, politely follow up with a reminder and link to make it effortless.

The key is eliminating all barriers to leaving a review. Treat submission like a breeze, and customers will happily oblige.

Step 4: Respond to Reviews (Good or Bad)

Here’s an underutilized truth about reviews:

Responding publicly shows you care, which motivates new reviews.

When you reply to Google reviews, it demonstrates you’re listening and interested in feedback.

BrightLocal says 86% of consumers read businesses’ responses to reviews.

So, replying has a dual benefit:

  • It shows customers their voice is heard.
  • It encourages new reviewers when they see you’re engaged.

Make sure to reply to negative reviews, too. Thank the customer for the feedback and offer to make amends.

This customer service recovery opportunity is invaluable. Don’t waste it by ignoring unhappy reviewers.

Step 5: Reward Reviewers with Perks

Now, you can’t pay for reviews. That’s a big no-no, according to Google’s guidelines. But you can offer small rewards or perks to thank reviewers. Some ideas:

  • Discount codes for future purchases
  • Free gifts like T-shirts or stickers
  • Entry into giveaways or contests
  • Special VIP access or membership perks

Just make sure rewards come after an honest review with no strings attached. Avoid quid pro quo offers.

Pro tip: When giving discounts for reviews, cap them at 10-15% of purchase value. Anything bigger looks suspicious to Google.

Step 6: Spotlight Great Reviews

Here’s a neat psychological trick:

Showcasing standout reviews motivates others to contribute their own.

It’s social proof in action. When potential reviewers see rave reviews from others, they want in on the fun.

Some ways to highlight reviews:

  • Feature on your website or in your storefront.
  • Share on social media channels.
  • Print on flyers or mailers.
  • Read out positive reviews on welcome phone calls.

Pro tip: Use screenshots to prevent fake reviews when sharing on social media. Links can be manipulated.

Step 7: Bury Negative Reviews Under Positives

Now, a few negative reviews are normal. Don’t panic if you get some 1-star ratings.

The key is burying those bad reviews under an avalanche of positive ones.

If you only have a handful of reviews, a single negative one can tank your average rating.

That’s why you need many positives to counteract the occasional bad apples.

Pro tip: Aim for at least 30+ Google reviews for a robust profile. Negative reviews get drowned out at that volume.

Step 8: Be Patient and Persistent

Here’s the reality about reviews:

You will accumulate them after a period of time. Review generation is an ongoing process.

Keep going even if you only get a trickle at first. Consistency and persistence pay off here.

Make review requests part of your regular customer communications. Don’t just ask once and give up.

With regular nudges and follow-ups, your Google reviews will snowball over time.

Pro tip: Set a goal of 10 new Google reviews per month. Check your progress weekly and tweak your tactics as needed.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Why are Google reviews important?

Google reviews are crucial for any business looking to build credibility and attract new customers online. More positive reviews help you rank higher in local SEO, leading to increased visibility and more customers. Reviews also provide social proof that people love your business.

How can I start collecting Google reviews?

First, claim and verify your Google My Business listing. Then, politely ask satisfied customers to leave reviews after positive interactions. Make review submission easy by sharing a direct link to your reviews page.

What’s the best way to ask for Google reviews?

Ask politely after an in-store purchase or positive experience. Say something casual like “We’d greatly appreciate a quick Google review if you were satisfied with your service today.” Avoid begging for 5 stars.

The Key Takeaway

Google reviews are social proof that gives your business credibility and trust with new prospects.

They also help you rank higher in local SEO by signalling a popular, high-quality business to Google.

That’s why every business needs to make review generation a priority.

Focus on:

  • Setting up your GMB listing properly
  • Politely asking customers to review you
  • Making review submission effortless
  • Responding publicly to feedback
  • Rewarding reviewers for their time
  • Showcasing standout reviews
  • Burying negative reviews under positive ones
  • Staying patient and persistent long-term

Keep these best practices in mind, and your Google reviews will flourish. Just don’t get discouraged by early, slow progress.

The more reviews you accumulate, the more you’ll reap the SEO and reputation benefits. So get out there and start asking – your future customers are waiting!

Konger Avatar
7 months ago

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