If you’re looking for a free and easy way to boost your Local SEO efforts and grow your business’ bottom line, focus your time on collecting online reviews from your clients. Online reviews posted on sites like Google+, Facebook, and Yelp are becoming the new word-of-mouth and the entire world, as we know it, is listening.
Online Reviews Affect SEO
Google and other search engines are taking online reviews very seriously these days. The people over at MOZ have reason to believe that online review information now makes up about 10% of Google’s recipe for search rankings. Also, Moz claims that quantity of reviews is the 9th most relevant piece of information when Google is formulating search results. Moz actually ranks “Quantity of Native Google Maps Reviews” over “Quality/Authority of Inbound Links to Domain” and “Page Authority of Landing Page URL”.
Consumers Want Online Reviews
Meanwhile, in the real world, a recent survey found that only 10% of consumers don’t consult online reviews prior to purchasing services or products. This means 90% of consumers are utilizing online reviews to guide them through their purchasing process. In fact, Brightlocal found that 88% of consumers say they trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
I should also mention, Chuck Cohen, CEO of Varsity Tutors, says:
“Collecting customer feedback is an excellent way for entrepreneurs to determine both the strengths and weaknesses of their product or service.”
Reviews Contain Valuable Information
Forget about rankings and CTRs for a second. Consumers see your business in a different light than any owner or employee ever will. Their fresh perspective can provide you invaluable information. When reflecting on the topic of customer feedback, Chuck Cohen went on to state:
“When my company discovered that nearly every client’s favorite aspect of our business was the extent to which the service was individualized to their specific needs, we developed new ways to further customize the experience we offered. Without this detailed feedback, we might have focused on completely unrelated product enhancements that our customers wouldn’t have appreciated as much.”
At the end of the day, Google is displaying more and more local listings within SERPs, more people are looking to review information as a resource than ever, and online reviews are free! It’s a No-Brainer! Your businesses’ rankings, reputation, and bottom line can all be improved by simply asking for your client’s opinion.