Maintaining a good online presence is undoubtedly one of the most important things you can do for your business. From refreshing your website to creating engaging social media posts, there’s a lot you can do to keep your business’s digital persona alive. But one of the most important things to consider is often one of the most overlooked: online customer reviews. Particularly for local businesses, consumers often look to online reviews for both positive and negative customer feedback to determine whether they should give a brand their business or not. For these reasons, you should learn how to manage your online customer reviews. 

Take a look at how we recommend incorporating online reviews into your digital marketing strategy: 

  • Use Reviews as Content. If you see a good review of your business online, don’t be afraid to use it as an advertisement. Remember, online reviews influence about 67.7% of buying decisions, so using your positive customer testimonials to reach a wider audience is a great way to attract more people to your business. Post reviews on social media with catching graphics, photos, and imagery, and even create a review tab on your website so consumers can easily find and sort through many online reviews.  
  • Incentivize Posting Reviews. The more positive reviews, the better. Incentivize your customers to post positive reviews of your business so that there’s more usable content and more experiences for potential customers to read about. Offer free or discounted services with an online review, free shipping, or a promotional code to encourage more people. 
  • Reply. Your team needs to respond to online reviews, especially if they’re negative. This will make those customers feel heard and show how dedicated you are to providing a great customer experience. Reply as quickly as possible, addressing the reviewer by name with an approachable, understanding, and personable tone. Apologize for the experience and own up that your business may have made a mistake. Offer a way to correct the situation so you can get a second chance to correct any wrongs. And, of course, thank the customer for their review! 
  • Set A Schedule. To keep up with replies and the need for content, you’ll need to keep up with a schedule to check for new online reviews. Make a list of all the channels and websites your business can be reviewed – including Google My Business, Yelp, Facebook, or TripAdvisor – and check them regularly. This way, you’ll stay updated on recent customer interactions. You may also want to claim your business pages on these sites to control the information on your business profile. 

Mountain South Media is a full-service digital marketing agency from The Smoky Mountain News and Smoky Mountain Living magazine. We focus on providing services to small businesses in our region, finding unique strategies and plans to give them the desired results. Services include social media, website development, Search Engine Optimization, and more. Visit our website to schedule a FREE digital consultation, or call us at 828-452-4251 to get started!