Customers trust reviews. Whenever customers are looking for any information online, Google has become the go-to friend. Whether they’re searching for a Thai restaurant, or the nearest car servicing dealership, the easiest thing-to-do is to just ‘google it’.
Apart from helping customers find various products or services, Google has also made it easier for customers to evaluate their authenticity, quality, and credibility by providing them with an option to read about what other customers have to say about those products and services. No wonder, millions of customers around the world read Google reviews about a product or service while making a purchasing decision.
While it’s known as the preferred online search engine for customers, Google is now taking over the reviews market. With the Google reviews feature, the tech giant has built a powerful platform for customers and small businesses. Customers can voice their opinions about their experiences with a business by simply writing a Google review.
These online opinions about a business become an important source of information for other customers. Reading about what other customers have to say about that business helps them make up their mind about whether they should use their services.
So, it’s become very important for businesses to collect and manage Google reviews. It not only determines their online reputation but also, the chances of getting new customers.
Here are 5 reasons why customers read Google reviews and how it impacts your business:
- Customers trust your Google reviews
- Customers are checking your credibility
- Customers intend to book with you
- Customers are comparing you with your competitors
- Customers are watching your responses
#1 Customers trust your Google reviews.
As we mentioned in the beginning of this articles, Google is one of the most trusted business review sites. Google’s review platform has seen a significant increase in the number of new reviews in 2017.
Google has made consistent efforts to grow their review volume. They’ve not only encouraged local businesses to collect more customer reviews but also glorified the customers’ role in writing Google reviews. That’s why Google has made it extremely easy for customers to write reviews.
Google’s ultimate focus is to strengthen its search platform by helping customers find local businesses. By reading real reviews from real customers, they can have a better idea of the kinds of services that you offer. This can go a long way in driving customers to contact a local business after viewing the search results. And that seems to be working!
So, make sure that your business is listed on ‘ Google My Business’ and start collecting as many Google reviews as possible.
#2 Customers are checking your credibility.
85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
When customers are searching for your business or any other business that offers services, similar to yours, they read Google reviews. Google reviews about your business provide an unbiased view of your business because they’re written by your customers.
When your prospects read customer feedback, they are more comfortable paying you a visit because they know what to expect. Google reviews are more meaningful to your customers than any business messaging on your website or ads. Think of it like a collaborative effort: you make a claim about your business, customers validate that claim through reviews.
#3 Customers intend to buy from you.
The most important opportunity that Google reviews present is they can influence purchasing decisions and lead to conversions. According to Google, 7 out of 10 customers visit a business or make a purchase depending on what they read about the business online. A high volume of authentic Google reviews about your business is more likely to drive customers to consider doing business with you.
After customers read Google reviews that speak well of your business, they’re most likely to take certain actions.
As you can see, while 37% of customers end up visiting a business’ website after reading online reviews, 10% of customers choose to contact the business directly.
The moments right after reading Google reviews about your business are full of purchase-intent, so make sure you nail them by soliciting more and more Google reviews!
#4 Customers are comparing you with your competitors.
While searching for your business or any other business that offers services, similar to yours, customers read Google reviews. They want to compare your Google reviews with that of your competitors to evaluate your standing. In a highly competitive market, customers have the choice of selecting any business, which best meets their needs.
They get to pick from hundreds of businesses like you. They believe in making informed decisions, that is, by reading your Google reviews and reviews across sites. In fact, your Google reviews can make the difference in their final purchase decision. If your business’ Google reviews are better as compared to your competitors, it will convince your customers about hiring your business.
#5 Customers are watching your responses.
The kind of customer experience you provide is going to be a decisive factor in purchase decisions. To gather insights about your customer experience, your prospects read Google reviews about your business. They won’t just look at positive reviews.
Customers like to closely watch how you handle negative reviews about your business. They are likely to pay attention to your responses, your tone and the final resolution of the matter.
So, make sure that you’re careful while responding to Google reviews about your business. It’s important to respond with a calm and strategic approach while dealing with unhappy customers. You need to convey that you take your negative reviews very seriously. Help out your unhappy customers by resolving their issues in the best possible way.
When prospects read Google reviews about your business and see that you make a genuine effort in resolving unpleasant experiences, it makes customers trust your business. This might persuade them to book a service with you.
Businesses should try to get as many Google reviews as possible. It’s important to solicit reviews from your customers without being intrusive.
A online reputation management service like Birdeye can help. Birdeye help more than 60,000 businesses collect and manage reviews, interact with customers through webchat and text messaging, rank higher on local search, and improve customer experience.