Online Reviews Trusted as Personal Recommendations

Get Online Customer ReviewsNo matter how long you’ve been in the local search engine optimization business, one of the things you’ve preached to your clients is “ask your customers for reviews.” And in return, your clients surely have asked you, “How do I get more reviews?”

I encourage our clients to use Your Site Reviews, a one-stop interface that allows easy access to leading customer review sites all under your business’s current domain. Trusted directories such as Google Places, Yelp, and Insider Pages are all contained on one page, allowing customers to easily access the top review directories.

Search Engine Land’s 2012 Local Consumer Review Survey found that “approximately 72% of consumers surveyed said that they trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, while 52% said that positive online reviews make them more likely to use a local business.”

Here are a few highlights from Part 1 of the online customer review survey:

  • 85% of consumers completing the survey used the Internet to find local businesses
  • 16% of consumers completing the survey used the Internet every week to find local businesses
  • 27% of consumers completing the survey currently and regularly use online reviews to decide which local business to use
  • 65% of consumers completing the survey only read between 2-10 reviews
  • Only 7% of consumers completing the survey read more than 20 reviews
  • 58% of consumers completing the survey trust businesses with positive reviews
  • 52% of consumers completing the survey are likely to actually use a local business with positive reviews

I agree with a note in the Search Engine Land survey expounding on quantity of reviews for a particular listing. When the survey finds only 7% of consumers read more than 20 reviews, this in no way suggests local businesses should stop seeking reviews at a certain level. I myself pay close attention to quantity of reviews when I am judging the validity of the Star Rating. A Star Rating of 4 with 200 reviews gives me more confidence in the local business verses a Star Rating of 5 with only 20 reviews. Of course, there is still a relative factor to consider in regard to the weight of quantity ratings. Your quantity importance is relative to that of your competition’s when judging the validity of Star Rating.

The promise of “more reviews” is still dependent on the client, the quality of their service, and their diligence in encouraging customers to post an online review. What the survey suggests is that consumers are viewing online reviews at an increased rate and trust the online reviews enough to make a conversion decision. Your Site Reviews offers a streamlined way for your clients to place those positive online reviews on leading local business review sites, exponentially increasing your review quantity and quality.

Check out the Your Site Reviews website for greater detail and sign up information. How do you get more reviews? Ask your customers to place reviews, using Your Site Reviews.

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