Why Local Reviews are Extremely Important for Businesses

Scott Lambert

In a recent survey it was revealed that 79% of people now trust online reviews as much as they do personal recommendations. For consumers conducting a local search for businesses, reading reviews has become an essential part of the decision-making process.

It has been shown that positive reviews can significantly boost a business’s rankings in a local search. Taking this in to consideration, review and reputation management is becoming extremely important for SEO professionals.

In a survey of 20 experts in local search, it was found that 65% of the respondents believed that managing reviews is either the most important aspect of online services or, at the very least, is very important. For local optimization, experts said that reviews are a major importance.

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Gaining reviews can be a tricky business. When experts were asked, 83% agreed that they used a similar strategy for each of their clients. While all clients are different, finding and gaining reviews is done via some similar steps. With the review target and preferred websites in mind, SEO experts spend time educating businesses on why local search reviews are important and how to ask clients to review products and services.

Chris Silver Smith, one of the experts questioned, said: “The very best approaches are highly naturalistic in the way in which reviews may be encouraged and influenced – it’s an area where sophistication and subtlety are called-for. Going about this in a clumsy manner can cause a business far more damage than the often marginal benefits that may be associated with reviews.”

One important figure to consider is just how many reviews per month are normally set as a goal. When the 20 professionals were questioned on this, there was a diverse range, varying from zero to between 11 and 20; however, 85% of the professionals said that they attempt to gain between one and five new reviews.

This conservative target suggests a number of facts:

  • Quality beats quantity, with better reviews beating volume
  • Reviews need to be gained naturally and consistently to avoid raising questions with consumers
  • Don't overwhelm clients with setting the bar too high

With this in mind, businesses need to make sure they have the reviews required to impress modern consumers.

Scott Lambert

Written by Scott Lambert

For 35 years, Scott has been at the forefront of digital transformation and how it is effectively applied in businesses and organizations to market, sell, and support customers and members more successfully and cost effectively. Scott is President and Co-Founder of Xcellimark, an award-winning digital marketing agency serving clients throughout the U.S., Canada, Central America, and Germany. Xcellimark helps businesses succeed through the implementation of its unique digital marketing and sales approach specifically designed to meet their specific goals and objectives. Scott’s marketing, sales, and operations experience have included key management positions at industry leaders including AT&T, iXL (now SapientRazorfish), eSchool Solutions (now TalentED), and BellSouth, where he led the product development, marketing efforts, and market launch of BellSouth.net, the second public ISP developed in the U.S. Scott is the author of articles highlighted on leading online publishers such as LinkedIn, Business 2 Community, and he was recently featured by LinkedIn in the Entrepreneur magazine article on “No Time for Marketing? Hire a Freelancer.” His engaging personality and wealth of real-world and business experience make Scott a frequently requested speaker. Some of his engagements include being the featured speaker in a series of Orlando Business Journal seminars on Digital Marketing, speaking at the WSI London conference, and at international conferences in Belize. Scott has a Bachelor’s degree in Accounting from the University of Mississippi and a Master’s of Science in the Management of Technology from the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech). Scott has been active in global mission efforts and is a board member of Global Teams, a Christian outreach organization. He lives in Winter Springs, FL with his wife Nancy and dog Sadie.

Topics: Local Search

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