Maximizing the Effectiveness of Online Reviews and Ratings

Online reviews and ratings are driving decisions for customers. Making sure your potential customers can find reviews on Google or Yelp is a requirement. So much socialization now happens on social apps people accept these platforms as authorities.

The internet has changed the way businesses interact with their customers. Online customer reviews are instantaneous and create a new level of transparency. It’s become a game-changer for how people shop for products and services.

Finding ways to maximize the effectiveness of these reviews and ratings can be hugely beneficial to local businesses that understand how to leverage them.

How To Get More Online Reviews

Getting more reviews for your business can be tricky but it is essential for building trust amongst potential customers. Businesses with little to no reviews can be seen as new and prone to inexperience, and suspicious.
Google and Yelp have directory ranking systems that place importance to number and quality of reviews. To be seen as better than the competition the number of your positive reviews matters.
Here are a few tips to help you get more reviews:

Reach Out Directly

The best way to encourage customers to leave a review is to simply ask them directly. You can make it easy by sharing your review link.
After a purchase, send an email or follow up with the customer personally. Politely ask them if they would take the time to leave their feedback.
Google frowns on incentivizing and purchasing reviews. Such behaviors may cost you your Google Business Profile listing. Also you can not require social media contest participants to give legal consideration as a condition of their entry. This means you can not require them to leave you a review, to like, comment or share either.
Here is a link to Google Reviews Policies. Here is a helpful link to Facebook Contest Policies.

Leverage Social Media

Social media provides businesses with a direct way to engage with customers. This also includes a dedicated page for reviews on the platform.

Most people check their social media feeds multiple times per day. Posting content related to your products or services can be a great way to keep your business top of mind. Posting may prompt people to take the time to leave a review.

Sharing positive reviews and testimonials on your social feeds is a way to generate social proof.

Utilizing Social Media To Gather Customer Feedback

Social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn are great places to engage with potential customers and gather feedback about your products or services.

Sharing user-generated content (i.e., pictures taken by real people using your product) is an effective way to build trust amongst potential buyers. Responding promptly to customer queries on social media provides an additional layer of assurance that will help drive sales over time.

Leverage Social Proof

Social proof is the concept that, when faced with uncertainty, people tend to look to the actions of others to help guide their decisions. This phenomenon has become even more relevant in the age of social media. It’s very easy for potential customers to see what other people are saying about a business or product before they commit to buying.

Here are some key tips on how businesses can leverage this concept:

Leverage Positive Reviews

Positive customer reviews and ratings on various online channels will go a long way toward building trust in your product or service. Businesses should make sure they are actively monitoring their review sites and responding promptly to both positive and negative feedback. Don’t be afraid to ask for reviews – most customers are happy to oblige if given direct instructions on how to do so!

Showcase User-Generated Content

Sharing user-generated content (i.e., pictures/videos taken by real people using/enjoying your product) is an effective way to build trust amongst potential buyers. Seeing satisfied customers using and enjoying your offering provides further evidence that your company provides quality products or services.

Make It Easy To Leave A Review

When asking customers for feedback, make sure it’s easy for them to actually do so! Let customers know which online review sites you use. Be sure to provide clear instructions on how they can leave a review. This will go far towards increasing the likelihood of them leaving one in the first place.

Additionally, giving customers the option of leaving feedback through different channels (e.g., website, email, social media) ensures that everyone has an opportunity to provide their thoughts regardless of which platform they prefer.

Leveraging Negative Online Reviews

Negative online reviews must be taken seriously by any business hoping to succeed in today’s digital world. Consumers trust negative reviews more than they trust positive ones. People can be skeptical of all 5 star reviews.
It’s important to pay attention to feedback from customers and try to understand what they are saying. A business should respond quickly and professionally to negative reviews. Seeing how you conduct yourself in less than ideal situations can help build trust in your company.

Understanding Search Engine Rankings

Search engine rankings can have a huge impact on a business’s success. It literally dictates how visible your company is to potential customers.

Understanding how online reviews & ratings play into them is critical. A business should make sure its website is optimized for search engines. This is critical for customers can finding it easily when searching within relevant categories.

Local businesses should focus on gathering positive customer feedback. Reviews on their Google Business Profile helps increase their visibility in search engine results.

Building Consumer Trust With Positive Reviews

Positive customer reviews are essential for building consumer trust in a business’s product or service. Businesses should actively seek out positive feedback from customers. They can do so through direct engagement and through online review sites like Yelp and Google My Business.

Taking the time to build personal relationships with customers will go a long way toward increasing word of mouth referrals for your business. Most people will ask their friends and family for their recommendations to help insulate them from making a bad choice.

Showcasing Your Products On Online Review Sites

When showcasing your products or services on an online review site, make sure you provide detailed descriptions of what you offer. Also, provide photos or video content that shows off your product or service in action.
Additionally, ask satisfied customers if they would be willing to leave honest reviews about their experiences working with you. Help potential customers see why your offering is worth considering over competitors’.

Understanding The Role Of Star Ratings In Buying Decisions

Star ratings are often used by consumers when making buying decisions. It’s important not only to focus on gaining five-star ratings but also on understanding why certain products may have lower ratings. This is an easy way for you to understand how to improve them accordingly.

Utilizing star rating systems provided by popular online review sites is one way of gathering valuable customer feedback. Just make sure you read the comments left by buyers when interpreting star ratings!


It is well worth the time and effort to ask for and respond to your customer reviews. Reviews are a driving force in future customer purchase decisions. To be competitive in any market you must be actively pursuing and monitoring reviews.