As you build your Google My Business listing, your customers may start to leave reviews for you. These reviews are useful for future customers because they help others decide whether to use your business. While building up reviews in itself is helpful, you can make this system work more effectively if you also respond to any reviews you get—good or bad. What are the benefits of doing this?
1. Engage With Your Customers
People like to read reviews before they decide whether to use a business. They rely on the opinions and experiences of others to tell them whether you're a good bet or not. While a review is helpful, your response to it also makes a difference.
If you reply to every review you get, then you come across as being more engaged with your customers. It shows that you care about them and your business. You acknowledge the fact that someone has taken the time to record their experiences with you.
For example, a simple thank you for a good review is polite. A longer reply gives you the chance to focus on points the customer may have made and even to add in more information that prospective customers may find useful. This also gives you the chance to make points that your basic listing may not cover.
2. Make Negative Reviews Work for You
Not all your reviews are going to be positive; you're likely to pick up some negative or neutral responses along the way. These comments can be damaging. For example, if you run a restaurant and someone posts a review saying that your service was unacceptably slow, then this could persuade new customers not to eat with you. However, if you respond with an apology or explanation as to why the reviewer had a less than perfect experience, then you reduce the negative effects of the review.
Taking responsibility for a customer's bad or disappointing experience shows that you care. It is another way of engaging with your audience. If you respond calmly and politely to a bad-tempered or rude reviewer, then you come across better than they do.
3. Improve Your Listing's SEO
The more positive activity you have on your Google My Business listing, the better your business will rank in search results. Search engines rate reviews highly as a sign of customer engagement. If you keep the conversation going, your ranking activity increases, especially if most of your reviews are positive.
To learn more about how to use reviews to improve the results you get from your Google My Business listing, contact online marketing specialists.