Google Reviews. Why they are a MUST!
Obtaining Google reviews has always been important, but now, it is CRITICAL.
This article is intended to be a quick read on the importance of Google Reviews; in now way is this considered to be a "deep dive".
There are a few components you should be working toward when getting customer reviews. First, you are looking for a customers' point of view. Why they picked you; what they liked; maybe even what they didn't. Their reviews will tell you a lot. If the reviews mention a particular manager a lot; showcase the manager more public forums (open houses, videos, etc). If the reviews mention how clean your business is, showcase that with photos and even a 360 tour. Whatever customers mention is what is important to them. You're opinion about your business doesn't matter; THEIRS DOES!
The customers' points of view leads us to point two. The feedback on the reviews should give you direction for the next several months; both positive and negative. They also help you understand your business a little better. The positive reviews are easy to address. Again, you can showcase the manager, your clean location, etc. How you deal with the negative reviews is key. First off, you should always shoot to respond to the reviews within 24 hours. This shows a level of engagement that customers want, especially if they are "blasting you" on Google, or any other review platform. Getting ready for this, studies have shown that 30% of the negative reviews you receive......are from competitors. Be ready for this because it sucks! I trust that people reading this blog wouldn't stoop this low. We believe in Karma, so should you!
This leads us to our final point. The final reason you should love Google Reviews is their ability to improving your ranking on that platform. Google has switched up their algorithm (probably has changed since the posting of this article) putting qualified reviews, and high ranking, in a better placement on the map pack. We believe that this also serves you up better on searches.
Using your Google Review information and responding to reviews
Below are a few highlights to keep in mind:
If you are trying to push an aspect of your business (24 hour access, climate controlled spaces, free truck, etc), make sure that you some how incorporate those amenities in your review responses. These help in future searches and may also point out these amenities that a searcher may not have known about had you not keyed it into your response.
Quality AND Quantity are key. Think about your tendencies. If you see a 4.7 rating and there are only 3 reviews, that is not nearly as credible as a 4.4 with 85 reviews.
Address the negative reviews head on. If it is a BS review, and you cannot show where the reviewer was a tenant, say it (tactfully) in the response. We like to say, "Mr. Doe, sorry about your negative experience. We do not show record on you ever being a tenant at our location. As you can see, we receive many, many great reviews about our property and service. Please give me a call at [number] and we can find out where you rented and maybe get you to come be a customer with us." What you will find is either; the customer won't respond (even if it was about your location) or; the customer will call, you can soothe them over and they may even amend their review! A win, win!
Never offer to compensate a reviewer with ANYTHING to change or even give a review. If Google catches on, you will hate life with Google.
Harvest the reviews you get and NEVER UNDERESTIMATE THEIR VALUE, even from the negative reviews!