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Question: How Critical Are Customer Reviews to Your Business? Answer: Extremely!

According to a recent survey, almost 9 out of 10 customers have read reviews to determine the quality of a local business, while around 40% of people are reading reviews on a regular basis. This survey shows that customer reviews—whether they are posted on Google, Yelp, or any other trusted review site—are absolutely critical to operating a successful business today.

While in the past, customer reviews traveled by word of mouth, thus assuring their reliability (but more on that later), surprisingly today, 90% of people trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. Combine that with the fact that more than 70% of customers trust businesses more when they have positive reviews, and what this means is that online customer reviews are both 1) a critical indicator customer satisfaction and 2) an important cultivator of business success.

Local Buzz Pro allows companies to manage and develop a critical component of their business. By providing all of the tools necessary to manage and increase reviews, companies that have successfully implemented Local Buzz Pro have seen up to more than a 100% increase in Google reviews in a short amount of time.

The above survey data makes clear that no longer can businesses manage to ignore what is clearly a central part of running a successful business. Online reviews are here to stay, and only those companies that take the initiative to implement a professional review management system will be able to remain competitive in the current climate. Leaving a critical component of your business up to chance shouldn’t be an option.

While this post delves into how critical customer reviews are, cultivating customer reviews that display the best sides of your business will be covered in the next blog post. Click here if you’d like to learn more about how Local Buzz Pro can help you manage your online review presence.

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Consumer Reviews: Don’t ask Why – Ask How?

There are many many articles stating why consumer reviews are important. Reviews help consumers make decisions and they help your website get found. Here’s a great summary of both points in Forbes: http://www.forbes.com/sites/jaysondemers/2015/12/28/how-important-are-customer-reviews-for-online-marketing/#cf4cf52788c6

So we KNOW reviews matter to your marketing efforts. The real question is how to cultivate reviews? There are good times to ask for reviews. That means looking a customer in the eye and saying please. When they purchase a product, sign a lease, or when you complete a service for them. But it’s not an automatic response. You and your team  have to systematically ask for a review – and tell folks HOW to leave you a review. Don’t assume they know how. For instance they may stop by your Facebook page and leave a like. That’s not bad – but it’s not a review either. Liking something doesn’t influence consumer opinion any where near as much as a review. A review has the specific details WHY a customer likes your product or service. Here’s a helpful take on asking: http://www.convinceandconvert.com/customer-experience/the-right-way-to-ask-for-customer-reviews/

So the question really is HOW do customers leave a review that’s easy for them and valuable for you. Send them to your website and make it easy for them, that’s how. Include a review us button or link.  Folks have likely already been to your site

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