Three Ways to Get More Google Reviews
As a business owner and operator, you already know that getting online local business reviews helps build your customer base. Reviews are a way to build trust with new customers while figuring out what is or isn’t working; in so doing, you create loyal patrons while improving your service and workflow over time. Naturally, something this valuable doesn’t always come easy. People are far more likely to leave a negative review than a positive one and manually managing your own reviews — reaching out to individual customers and directly handling every single review, over and over, hoping for the best — often does nothing but cause headaches for business owners who could be better spending their time actually running their business.
In this article, we’ll look at how to get Google more reviews, why fake reviews won’t help you, and why automated customer review management is your best option.
Are Google Reviews Really That Important?
Think about the last time you shopped online for yourself. You probably did the exact same thing that your own customers are doing when they read about your company on Google.
72% of customers report that positive reviews cause them to put more trust in a local business than they would have otherwise. In fact, a whopping 88% of customers shopping on the internet consider online reviews to be as good as a personal recommendation they received from someone they know. That’s nearly 9 out of every 10 online consumers!
9 out of every 10 consumers look at reviews as recommendations!
With that many people giving that high of a credence to online reviews, you obviously want to make sure you’re getting as many positive ratings as you can. At the same time, you also want to minimize the negative ratings.
Method 1: Getting More Google Reviews by Hand
To get more online reviews, many local business owners — electricians, plumbers, shop owners, etc. — attempt to reach out to their customers manually. That is, they try to contact each and every person that does business with them on a case-by-case basis, one by one. This is slow, unpredictable, and takes way too much time.
If you like, imagine an incredibly long line of customers, single-file, extending all the way down the street from your business’s front door. This long march wraps around the corner and then around another, for miles and miles and miles, until you literally can’t see the end.
This actually provides a very clear picture of the manual approach to dealing with your online reviews. If you personally tried to get through all of these people on your own, you would never have any time to actually run your business and get more customers — the very reason you want to have the good reviews in the first place!
Here’s what that looks like in more concrete terms:
- You can directly reach out to customers and ask them to write you a review on Google.
- You can find their email address and write a personalized letter to them, in which you request for them to write you a Google review.
- You can print off hard copies of postcards or flyers that you leave behind when you do business in someone’s home or office, on which you ask for reviews.
- You can add a bunch of pop-up windows and calls-to-action all over your website to encourage people to write reviews.
- You can respond to every single review that appears by writing a personalized note that personally thanks them by name, accompanied by a long and thoughtful post.
At first blush, these probably sound like great ideas — at least on the surface. They strike most business owners as the most reasonable route, which is exactly why most local business operators try out these methods for themselves.
The problem with all these approaches mainly comes down to the manual time and energy it takes to put them into effect. Think again about that line extending from your business all the way into the next county — that’s essentially what you’re dealing with here. If these manual strategies are how you get Google reviews, you can’t get more without putting in a lot more work.
Another major issue with a few of these is that customers simply hate them. Have you ever seen a pop-up appear on a website and said to yourself, “Oh, how nice! I’m so glad this window appeared to block what I’m reading, so that I can be offered something I didn’t want or ask for in the first place. What a great turn of events. My lucky day!”
Didn’t think so. And your customers probably have the same reaction.
Method 2: Buying Fake Google Reviews
People often have a lot of questions when it comes to fake Google reviews:
- What is a fake review? (In a word: spam.)
- Are fake Google reviews illegal? (Potentially, believe it or not.)
- How much do fake Google reviews cost? (It varies, but it’s never worth it.)
- Will fake Google reviews actually help my business? (Almost never.)
- Will fake Google reviews actually hurt my business? (Almost always.)
Most of the time, groups that operate in the ersatz review business will post ads that offer to provide “cheap and fast” Google reviews for less than the cost of a decent lunch. They may or may not be “cheap” or “fast”, but they will most definitely be fake.
These fake reviews are intended to look just like actual reviews written by humans, except they come from a third-party company that has never bought anything you sell or any service you provide.
They’re often written by a computer algorithm to make your brand sound incredible and appealing to potential (real) customers. These reviews glow and gush about how great you and your company are. What seems like a great way to achieve quick success turns out to be nothing more than smoke and mirrors that evaporate almost as soon as you look in their direction.
How to Buy Fake Google Reviews
It’s a very straightforward process:
- Click on the cheapest customer review management ad you see.
- Pay spammers to post fake Google reviews of your business.
- Potential customers mark the fake reviews as spam (which they are).
- Google punishes you for spamming people with reduced rank and traffic.
- Customers either choose someone else or never see your business at all.
(Optional step: Have the FTC come after you.)
Here’s our professional advice: don’t waste your time, energy, or hard-earned money on spam reviews. They nearly always come back to bite you in the end.
Method 3: Automated Customer Review Management
If you’re thinking that there must be a better way to get more Google reviews, you’re right!
The manual method doesn’t seem to work well enough, and it takes far too much energy, leaving you with no time to run your business. The fake review approach, by contrast, appears to be “quick” and “easy”, when in reality it’s nothing but an illusion of grandeur. Thankfully, there is a much better way for how to get more customer reviews online, and it’s proven to work more effectively and efficiently than any of the manual options.
Automated customer review management blows every other method of getting more Google reviews out of the water.
Unlike review gating in which businesses try to divert customers from writing negative reviews about their experiences, BirdEye customer review management allows you to have access to (and manage!) customer reviews across every touch point, from every source, all in one place.
Because it’s all automated, collecting new reviews has never been easier. Simply connect your existing customer management software (or CMS) to BirdEye to automatically import your contacts.
Once this is done, BirdEye sends customers to top review sites to share their feedback, making the whole process seamless and effortless.
With Cut Throat Marketing and BirdEye, the process is 100% automated — you don’t even need to pull a report for the software. It just works.
Let Cut Throat Marketing Handle The Stress
No more manual email writing, postcard printing, annoying pop-ups, or (worst of all) badgering customers repeatedly for responses. Those days are long gone.
With Cut Throat Marketing, take the pressure off yourself, so that you can get back to running your business the way that you want. Automate your customer review management to get back on track and take the world by storm all at the same time. Contact us for a free consultation today.