How to Get More 5-Star Reviews


How to Get More 5 Star Reviews

We probably don’t need to tell you that good online reviews are great for business—but what about the stellar reviews? A five-star review is a glowing recommendation of your product or service, and each one gets you closer to the top of search results and industry recognition. Getting these reviews will take some planning, but we’ll walk you through everything you need to improve ratings and get more of them.

The Importance of Good Business Reviews

Before we dive into the “how,” let’s explore the “why.” In today’s digital-first environment, reviews are crucial to business success. The search engine optimization researchers at Moz found that a whopping 96% of people read reviews, and almost 80% of them use Google. Reviews heavily impact someone’s perception of a business, too, with 86% of consumers saying reviews are either the most important or a somewhat important factor in gauging trust.

Clearly, good reviews are important. Along with influencing customer perceptions, five-star reviews can:

  • Put you at the top of search results: Google’s criteria for results pages is under lock and key, but we know that reviews help and can make you one of the first businesses a customer sees.
  • Help you get more recognition and awards: Good reviews might get you on some “Best of” lists. Whether you want to be named the “Top Coffee Shop in the Chicago Area” or one of the “Best Hotels in Dallas,” five-star reviews go a long way.
  • Change what customers are willing to pay: Customers might be happy to pay more for a business with better reviews. After all, would you rather pay $50 for a mediocre meal or one that hundreds of customers think is worth the money?

Remember that a perfect five-star rating shouldn’t be the main goal. Many customers find perfect scores suspicious, especially several of them, as they can point to fake reviews. They know that businesses can’t please everyone, so a rating in the high fours is ideal.

How to Earn Good Reviews

With those goals in mind, boosting your business ratings requires a holistic approach. Try these steps to get better reviews:

1. Make the Experience Exceptional

Depending on what you offer, improving the customer experience can take many forms. Consider the customer’s interactions with your business from start to finish. Is your website helpful? Is your building hard to find? Does someone greet them at the door? Did their package arrive on time?

The customer experience varies widely, so do some digging and find out how to make it as positive and memorable as possible.

2. Focus on the Right Review Sites

Pick the most relevant sites to avoid stretching yourself too thin. Google is essential for any business. Facebook is great for local businesses, and e-commerce sellers often depend on good Amazon reviews. You may also want to consider industry-specific websites, like Angi for home services and Expedia or TripAdvisor for hospitality and travel.

3. Get Your Team On Board

Your staff is crucial in delivering a five-star experience and asking customers for reviews. Communicate the value of reviews for the business, and reward your staff for a job well done. You might keep a leaderboard and offer a gift card to the team member mentioned in the most reviews.

Service-oriented businesses can ramp up reviews by focusing on building relationships. For example, many customers will want to “give back” to a great waitress or a friendly valet by mentioning them in a review. Get your staff in the habit of sharing their names to build connections and asking customers to watch for a review request.

4. Ask for the Review

Many customers won’t think about leaving a review unless you bring it to their attention. Build a system for requesting reviews consistently, such as automatically sending a link to customers after they’ve engaged with you. Moz found that if asked, over half of customers will always or usually write a review.

50% of people will leave a review if asked

Short message service (SMS) texts are an excellent way to get people to open your review requests. They stand out amid a sea of spam emails, and they make it easy for people to leave a review by clicking on a link. We’ll talk more about how to request a review on Google and other platforms in the next section.

An important note on asking for reviews—some websites don’t want you to do this. Notably, Yelp doesn’t like it. The company states that its software may not recommend your business as often if it suspects you’re asking for reviews. Most major review sites allow you to request reviews as long as you ask all customers, not just those who had positive experiences.

5. Respond to Reviews

Show your appreciation with unique replies to thank reviewers for their feedback and apologize for any problems. Let reviewers know if you’re addressing the issue. If you need to correct any incorrect details, do so carefully. You don’t want to seem combative or dismissive of their problems, regardless of the reviewer’s attitude.

How to Ask for a Review Via Text

Setting up texts that ask for reviews is simple. Red Oxygen offers many ways to send messages, build templates and import customer lists, all for low monthly prices. We also have reusable templates and a selection of pre-made options. The tricky part is figuring out what to say. Make sure your text is:

  • Easy to use: The easier it is for someone to leave a review, the more likely they are to do it. Include a link in the text, ideally to a website that doesn’t require the user to make an account or log in. Consider your timing, too. A tour company could send a message 10 minutes after the customer leaves, but a retailer might want to wait a few days so the customer could try out the product first.
  • Simple: Don’t overcomplicate things. Keep your message short and sweet. Remind customers how much you value their input, and provide your link. Some businesses can even garner support by emphasizing the importance of reviews, but don’t go overboard. For instance, a mom-and-pop shop could say, “As a local business, we depend on your reviews!”
  • Motivating: Consider giving your customers an incentive to leave a review. Some options include a coupon, a freebie, a donation to a nonprofit, free shipping or entry into a drawing. A fast food restaurant could offer a free dessert, while an auto shop could offer $5 off the customer’s next oil change.

You’ll need to keep a few guidelines in mind when making a texting program. Legally, you need their permission to send texts, which you can ask for during online interactions like taking reservations, signing up for a loyalty program or placing an order. You must also provide a short description of the texts you’ll send and have an option to opt out of messages.

If you offer incentives for reviewers, make sure it’s clear that the reward is a thank-you for leaving a review, whether good or bad. Ethics aside, only rewarding good reviews can violate many websites’ guidelines. Google, for instance, does not want you to offer incentives, so don’t use this tactic when making a Google review request. Check with individual platforms before offering an incentive.

Ask for Reviews via SMS With Red Oxygen

Ready to simplify your review requests? Red Oxygen makes it easy for businesses of all sizes to ask for reviews via text quickly and compliantly. Access professional tools like personalization, templates and bulk texting. Our team is here to help with global support and tools for sending messages via email, web browsers and other computer platforms.

Explore Red Oxygen today to learn more about our features, or contact us to get started!

Contact Red Oxygen for SMS


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