Online reviews are increasingly becoming an important part of every business’s marketing strategy. Now on most platforms and directories, businesses can gather reviews from their customers. Furthermore, today customers are constantly reading and writing online reviews of the businesses they interact with.
In fact, according to the BrightLocal Local Consumer Review Survey, 90% of people read online reviews before visiting a business.
In addition, 70% of consumers leave a business review when asked!
But the real question is – what do all these online reviews mean for Local SEO?
First of all, the number of online reviews can have a significant impact on the visibility of your business in local search results. This is because reviews help your business rank higher. That’s why having your business listed on multiple platforms where customers can leave online reviews is so important.
So, list your business on as many channels as possible, such as Facebook, Bing, Google, and Yelp!
Not only does the number of online reviews you have impact local search performance, but so does how frequently you are receiving them. Getting regular online reviews creates new online content about your business. That means more content for Google to crawl and find, improving your Local SEO.
It’s not just quantity that matters though. The quality of your reviews is important too. Search engines like Google aim to provide searchers with the most useful and helpful information. Therefore, search engines will always return businesses with good quality-written reviews to searchers.
This is due to the fact that online reviews help customers understand if a business provides a service or product that suits them. Both positive and negative reviews are valuable in this case. They give customers an insight into the quality of the business and help them decide if they can trust the business.
Certain search engines like Google even prioritise reviews over other content! Google crawlers look for content that adheres to E-A-T: Expertise, Authority and Trust.
Naturally, the same way you trust personal recommendations rather than the business themselves, online searchers trust reviews more than the content produced by businesses online. This article by SEMRush goes into more detail about how to improve your E-A-T.
Another way in which reviews positively impact Local SEO is by simply having all your online reviews displayed on your business listings. According to the study performed by the Spiegel Research Center, displaying reviews can increase conversion rates by 270%.
Finally, online reviews often will include keywords you are trying to rank for and geographical modifiers. This will increase your chances of ranking in local search, especially on Google!
What does all this information mean? It means your business needs to seriously consider investing in a Reputation Management Strategy!
Now that you can see the huge impact reviews can have on your Local SEO, you should use this knowledge to your advantage. You can utilise online reviews to enhance the visibility of your business in local search with Reputation Management. Reputation Management tools can help you monitor your current incoming online reviews and increase the number of reviews you are getting.
Try Vicinus for your solution to Reputation Management:
The Vicinus team know how important reviews are for businesses to build a great brand reputation.
Our hyperlocal marketing platform can help your build trust in your brand and acquire more nearby customers. Vicinus has in-built Machine Learning-powered sentiment analysis that gathers insights from your online reviews.
It can identify customer emotions and sentiments about your brand, such as happiness, satisfaction, shock, anger, or sadness. This helps you understand your customers better so you can be constantly improving! You can read more about how this technology works in our blog about how Vicinus is using AI to revolutionise local search.
Vicinus Review Generation Feature
Additionally, Vicinus has a review generation feature that enables generates positive reviews consistently. This helps aid customer conversion as well as develop a positive image of your brand.
And last but not least, Vicinus can create and publish business listings across several online channels with our great Listing Distribution Network. This ensures your business is on all the review platforms your customers are using!
Feel free to drop us an email at email@example.com if you would like to learn more. Alternatively, visit our website to find out more about Vicinus!