Do you research reviews before eating at a restaurant? Do you check multiple review sites when purchasing a product, especially if it has a large price tag? Consumers use online reviews and online review sites to research and make informed purchasing decisions. From restaurants to gadgets and more, online reviews are part of the purchasing process. Most smart businesses have already been creating and running programs that encourage consumers to leave reviews on popular sites relevant for the business and industry. Regardless of your industry, if you run a business, your customers will probably use the internet to learn more about your business. Monitoring the online presence of your business, including responding to positive and negative reviews online, should be an essential part of business in 2022.
According to Podium, in 2021, over 99% of consumers used the internet to look up local businesses. Over 81% of consumers used Google reviews to evaluate a business in 2021, whereas the number stood at 63% in 2020. Over 53% used Yelp to evaluate a business in 2021, whereas only 32% relied on the platform in 2020. There are numerous sites where a business can garner reviews: from employees on sites such as Indeed and Google, from customers on Yelp, and more.
Customers evaluate both reviews and the service response from the business to those reviews. Even if the point of sale has been completed, the service experience isn’t yet concluded if someone leaves a review: It is important for a business to follow-through and say thank you for a positive review and to acknowledge if someone has a negative review, because that means they had a negative experience with your business. Those who read negative reviews will especially be evaluating the quality of the business response to that review. Readers would judge if the business fixed that customer service opportunity in their response.
Consumers that leave a review, whether positive or negative, have taken time to make that review. Even if there is a review that is exceedingly negative, managing the response your business has to that review still demonstrates attention and care on the part of your business, and could allow for further remedying of an issue that was not completely resolved before.
It is important for businesses to stay current with their online presence to engage with customers and offer a glimpse to potential consumers about what their experience could be like should they decide to support or choose your business.
For more information check out this article from Podium, one of TALA’s Industry Partners. For more information on how to easily capture reviews on the sites your consumers are visiting, contact Ashley Lewis at Podium at 509.833.7921 or [email protected].