When you think about online marketing, what is the first term that comes to mind? The answer is likely Search Engine Optimization (SEO). By now, anyone who is looking to grow their business online should be familiar with what SEO stands for and the various different factors that affect it.  When we talk about SEO, the focus is always on a means to organically increase visibility for your website and your business. One factor that tops the list every time is online reviews. 

Now more than ever before, statistics are showing the importance of online reviews.

The

Infographic by- Invesp

To summarize the above infographic, recent studies have shown that: 

  • More than 80% of consumers check online reviews before deciding to buy a product or purchase a service,
  • Over 93% of consumers buying choices are impacted by the reviews they read,
  • When it comes to businesses with low online ratings, it has been found that 97% of consumers will avoid businesses that have a rating below 3 stars,
  • On average, customers are willing to spend 31% more on businesses that display large amounts of excellent reviews, 
  • More than two-thirds (68%) of consumers are willing to pay up to 15% more for the same service or product if it has better reviews compared to its competitors,
  • A one-star increase in ratings on Yelp led to 5-9% increases in revenue for businesses,
  • When it comes to B2B sales, stats show that over 92% of the buyers only buy services or products after reading trusted reviews from an authoritative source. 

Sources; Podium, Harvard Business School, Invesp, G2, SearchEngineLand

In addition to all that, online reviews play an important role in Search Engine Optimization (SEO). They also help your business stand out compared to your competitors, create trust and transparency between businesses and consumers, and are now making up over 10% of online search ranking criteria alone. Therefore, part of search engine algorithms for ranking businesses and websites rely on the online reputation factor of your business (aka star ratings and reviews).  The SEO rich content of online reviews are high, organic, and raw. Considering their worth, consumers and digital marketers have found them to be a key factor in business reputation. So let’s review how online reviews can generate the best SEO ranking results for your business. 

Reviews Create Trust & Transparency

Now more than ever consumers rely on reviews to help make better buying decisions every day. Online reviews create a level of transparency between the consumer and the business. 

Highly Relevant Keywords

Online reviews are SEO keywords rich! Generally, it can take a lot of work to create SEO keyword-rich content, but online reviews are a way to get your customers to do this work for you. Online reviews often contain the name of your products and/or services, the name of your business, and the phrases that people tend to use when they search for your type of business. 

For example; “We’ve used TNA Concrete as the main contractor for all our residential and business concrete and asphalt needs in Calgary. Their team provided great service, amazing customer support, and their work was top of the line. “ This means your reviews tend to contain all the essential keywords necessary to gain highly visible results on platforms like Google & Bing. 

Reviews Mean More Content 

Search engines love fresh and frequently updated content, period. Content across different platforms and in different forms is one of the best ways to increase the visibility of your business. The more content you can produce, the more results you will be able to achieve from search. That’s why businesses are always striving to have active social media and alternative offsite profiles.  Online reviews are a fresh, organic, user-generated (UGC) stream of content produced from your clients. In addition, they are a good way to continuously evolve your customer service as they provide good and honest feedback on your services.

It’s Easy to Achieve

If your business offers great services at a reasonable price, all you have to do is ask. Statistics are showing that most customers are more than happy to show support for businesses that provide good services. Consumers know how important reviews are and do not hesitate to provide them. Positive word of mouth goes a very long way in boosting your business’s reputation and ranking. Businesses with strong online reputations easily display at the top of search pages.

Boosts your “GoogleMyBusiness” Listing 

Stars and reviews help add an extra shine to your Google My Business listing. They help your listing stand out from your competitors, plus the higher your review and ratings count, the more you will stand out.  

More Love from Social Media Sites 

Once you have a lot of positive reviews, it is time to start sharing them on all of your social media outlets. Nothing builds more customer assurance than sharing positive feedback from other customers. Plus, sharing positive reviews is a great way to gain more content exposure on social media! 

More Reviews Means More Visibility, Period.

Unlike paid ads, customer reviews are completely free! So, let your customers do your brand promotion for you. But don’t forget to thank them in return and consider offering some type of reward for their loyalty. Content marketing is vast, and for a business to thrive online, reviews are key, but not the only SEO play in the playbook. Hungry for more? Read our article about Off-Site SEO and backlinking!

Beanstalk For Online Reviews Management

Our exclusive Beanstalk – Business Growth Technology dramatically increases the number of positive reviews your business receives online by automating the reviews process for you. Visit www.Beanstalk-Growth.com to set up your free trial today!