No matter whether you’re just starting out or are an established business, one thing is always true: word-of-mouth matters. In today’s world, we not only listen to the advice and recommendations of people who are close to us, but also to those of strangers. Online reviews heavily influence whether someone will use your service. In a study done by BrightLocal, they found that 87% of consumers read online reviews for local businesses. Additionally, the average consumer reads 10 reviews before deciding they trust a business. The more positive reviews you have, the more likely it is that you’ll convince that person to become your next customer.
If you don’t currently have a lot of reviews — or simply want to have more people buzzing about your company — here are a few ways you can maximize reviews and referrals to grow your business.
There’s a famous quote that says, “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” If you don’t ask your customers to write a review, you can’t expect them to do it on their own (even though a few might). You can ask them for a review face-to-face, or even better, you can send a review link to their phone. Since most people have their phones on them all day, it’s the best way to catch your customer’s attention and convince them to take the time to share their experience. You can also send referral links so finding your next customer is a breeze.
Not getting as many reviews or referrals as you want? Incentivize your customer by offering something in return. Maybe you give them $10 off their next service with you, or they get a percentage off of their final price. In exchange for a review or referral, you could also offer branded merchandise, which doubles as free advertising for your company.
Respond to Reviews
How you present yourself to potential customers is incredibly important. As they look through reviews of your company — both good and bad — what do they see? Do you get defensive? Do you offer solutions? Do you express your sincere gratitude? How you respond to your reviews will tip the scales when someone is considering your services And the more customers you can acquire, the more reviews and referrals you can get in the future.
Use Before/After Photos and Videos
Create content customers can’t wait to share. There’s nothing quite like seeing a transformation, whether it’s a dirty car turned cleaned, a bare backyard now filled with beautiful flowers or a messy space that’s been organized. When customers talk to their friends or write reviews, they’ll be able to show how great your work is and convince others to use your services.
Create An Experience Worth Talking About
One of the best ways to motivate your customers to write reviews and refer their friends is to wow them with your service. If your work is exceptional and their experience is memorable, customers will go out of their way to make the effort. You improve their experience by being friendly, creating expectations for the service early on, sharing photos of your work and communicating with them each step of the way. Relay makes every aspect of messaging your customers super simple thanks to pre-written messages that can be sent in one tap, which means you can send an introduction, ETA, or review and referral links in seconds. Get a demo to see how we can take your small business to the next level.