How to Get More Google My Business Reviews
Google My Business reviews help to build trust and give your brand credibility, but where do you start to get more reviews on Google My Business? Let’s take a look…
Research shows that Google is the fastest growing online reviews platform in the world and is acquiring new reviews at a much quicker rate than its closest rival, Facebook. As a local business owner, it makes sense that you’d want to grow your Google My Business reviews. After all, the search engine handles the majority of search traffic so having five-star ratings appear directly in the search results can only be a good thing for your online reputation.
Google has been allowing customers to leave reviews for local businesses for over a decade. The volume of Google My Business reviews you collect is a known SEO ranking factor. Online reviews also occupy an important place in the consumer psyche, with over seven in ten consumers admitting to trusting a business more if it has strong online reviews, and around half refusing to buy from a business with a rating lower than four stars.
If you’re able to build up a store of Google reviews and demonstrate a steady influx of four-star-or-above reviews regularly, consumers are more likely to choose your business over a competitor.
So we know that Google reviews help to build trust and give your brand credibility, but why else are they so important and how do you approach the imposing task of encouraging customers to leave a positive review for you? Let’s take a look…
What is Google My Business?
If you are new to Google My Business—and many companies still haven’t claimed or optimized their Google My Business listing so you certainly aren’t alone if you are—it might help to hear more about it straight from the horse’s mouth:
Google My Business is a free and easy-to-use tool for businesses and organisations to manage their online presence across Google, including Search and Maps. By verifying and editing your business information, you can both help customers to find you and tell them the story of your business.
The Google My Business platform additionally provides an interface to manage how your business information appears across Search and Maps.
Formerly known as Google Places, Google My Business allows local customers to leave reviews for businesses (alongside a whole other host of features!) These can be accessed from the business’s Google My Business listing in search results, or in Google Maps.
Google My Business reviews are closely tied to local pack search positioning, with research determining that the more Google My Business reviews you are able to accrue, the more likely you are to occupy positions 1 through 3 in the local search results.
Why is it important to get more Google Reviews?
Over in our guide on how Google Reviews work, we shared that in more than 60% of cases, the local business boasting the greatest number of Google customer reviews will secure the top spot in the local search results. Likewise, if you lose reviews or fail to collect any, your ranking will decrease so you’ll be less visible to local search users.
You’ll also need around eight or more reviews to rank top, so the effectiveness of your Google reviews strategy will directly impact on how visible your business is in local pack results.
So why does this matter? We studied the impact of reviews and ratings on search click-through rates to better understand the importance of Google reviews from a search perspective. Turns out, you’ll get 25% more clicks if you have a five-star average review rating showing on your profile than a three-star average review rating, and 39% more clicks for a five-star average review rating versus one-star.
Those businesses with five-star average review ratings also receive the lion’s share of clicks from search users, taking 69% of clicks from the local pack overall. If you have no reviews, you can expect to record 28% fewer clicks than a rival with a five-star average review rating.
As we have already seen, consumers also expect to see reviews when they search. Reviews indicate that a business can be trusted, helping consumers to be more confident in their decisions.