If you’re having trouble getting your customers to leave reviews.
Outside of the food and hospitality business, it can be a real struggle for companies to receive positive reviews.
As a result of this, we speak daily with companies that do excellent work and have an amazing real-world standing but have significantly more negative online reviews than positive.
So what is a company owner or general manager to do if they find themselves in this circumstance?
Ask happy customers for reviews
Hint the inspection balance back in your favor by getting those happy clients to be your online assistants. Below, I’ll discuss some tips, best practices and tests you can run to have more positive reviews.
But first, you might be wondering: Is it ok to request reviews?
Yelp, however, has issued contradictory statements on whether or not you’re permitted to ask customers for reviews. I inquired Yelp directly, and they said that it is okay to request reviews so long as there isn’t any incentivizing. For all of the other review sites, you will want to look at their terms of service and guidelines.
Ask in person
The person-to-person request is remarkably effective, especially if the requester has invested plenty of time with the client. We have found that asking in person can garner you seven to eight times more reviews than inquiring via email.
Let us take a furniture shop as an example. A sales associate might spend an hour or more assisting a client to pick out and customize only the ideal couch for their dwelling. They get to know each other over the course of the time, discuss where they are from, their families, etc. A mini-bond is built at the time spent together.
At the close of the sale, there’s currently no individual better positioned to request a review than this sales partner. The partner can explain that it helps other clients that are researching them and provides a real perspective on the company.
If you’re considering asking customers for reviews, first try to work out the customer touch points and that within the company builds the deepest connection with the client. That is likely the man who should be requesting reviews.
The “BONUS” trick
The “tip” trick is just one of those review development hacks that may work really great particularly industries. The strategy is that somebody who has spent plenty of time with a client then asks for a review, but throws in the kicker of, “If you had a fantastic experience and include my first name at the review, the business gives me a $10 bonus.”
This small “sweetener” provides a customer the excess incentive to leave an internet review, particularly if they had a fantastic experience.
We have seen this strategy work best with services provided in and about customers’ homes.
The service providers work hard, and people sometimes need to tip them for their job; this approach gives customers a completely free way to trick someone who did a fantastic job.
For the ideal businesses, this can radically accelerate the amount of inspection that comes in.
Ask by email
Asking for reviews via email is a little trickier. There are instances where you do not have a lot (or any) face time with a client. In those cases, email could be your only alternative.
If you are going to request reviews via email, we strongly urge you to pre-screen your clients through an internal survey before following up with another email asking them for a public inspection. Though this may seem like cheating, it is not any different from what you’d do in person.
If a person is clearly angry, you would not ask them to get an internet review. Likewise, using triggers from an internal survey lets you apply this identical human logic, just algorithmically.
Here are some of the best practices to your email request letter:
Have the email come from a real person’s email address (Better yet, have it come out of a name they would recognize, like someone they worked with). Eliminate random social media or site footer links — just like great conversion rate optimization, possess a singular aim of users clicking the review button.
Test different subject lines: We have found that using the individual’s name in the subject line works well in many cases but falls completely flat in a couple of others.
Evaluation different email copy to see what works best.
As with any great effort, test everything until you are receiving the best conversion-to-review rate potential (not just open rate). An email will almost never work in addition to requesting in person, but it could still be quite effective at scale.
A company initiative
The best strategies for earning reviews a priority across a company include:
Making better reviews a top-notch focus; executives will need to communicate the importance.
Obtaining organizational buy-in on the significance of reviews by helping workers understand the immediate impact they have on the company.
Training key employees about the best way best to request reviews.
Creating a scorecard that monitors reviews by places
Providing awards and bonuses for the places that have the best online reviews.
Get your reviews!
The simple act of requesting reviews begins to put the power back into your own hands. Many company owners simply throw up their hands in the air and suppose there’s nothing they could do. However, as you can see, it is quite the opposite.
Asking for reviews does not require any special tools or technologies, only a commitment to see it through. Using these plans, you can fight back against the happening of companies (out of the hospitality and food sector) only getting negative reviews.