All About Reviews and Your Local Business
It is human nature for us to have something to say about a product or service we have used. But what are the effects of these words to your local business and your local SEO efforts?
Reviews and Your Local Biz
Local SEO and reviews have always gone hand in hand and reviews have become very important all the more these days, when people have become more appreciative of local businesses. For one, the number of review sites have exponentially grown, with more and more customers acquiring “the nerve” to express themselves online on what they think of a product or service they have used. With so much time in the hands of the customers these days, they can definitely spare a minute or two raving or ranting about a business while they are spending a lot of time at home in their pajamas.
When you search for a business, it won’t take you long to find what others have to say about it — it’s probably going to be one of the first results they see. Google takes review ratings from multiple sites into consideration when determining the order of businesses it returns in local searches. In fact, according to LocalSEO Guide, online reviews and specific keywords influence local search engine visibility more than any other factor.
But then, what if reviews for your business are not that good?
Negative reviews certainly have an effect on a local business, and we’re not even talking about their effects on local SEO yet. The reputation of a business, with factors such as trustworthiness, prestige, and profitability, can be hard hit by even just a single review of an unsatisfied customer. Readers of these reviews tend to get easily convinced, with some studies claiming that four in every 10 consumers tend to avoid a business that they have associated with a negative review, even though they have already transacted with that business in the past. If your negatively-reviewed business is trying to lure new customers, forget about it: 86% of potential customers won’t even consider your business anymore. Considering that your local business wants to get clients just within your vicinity, you might want to forget about that idea if you’ve gotten negative reviews simply because your customer base is smaller and are near each other. Obviously, word travels way faster in local communities.
But take note, though, that negative reviews can’t be all that bad for your businesses. You simply cannot mope and raise both your hands in surrender because your online business has received a couple of nasty reviews on the Internet. Here is an article in business.com that shows that there is actually a positive aspect of negative reviews for your SEO efforts.
Negative reviews of your business aren’t always a force of evil against your SEO efforts. There are a few distinct ways that bad reviews may actually benefit you at the end of the day.
Do reviews affect local SEO rankings?
Search engines have taken note of the upsurge of reviews, so much so that they have made it a point for their bots to crawl reviews diligently, making them quite a significant factor in search rankings for both local and general results. They do consider the quantity and quality of the reviews your business gets. When you think about it, since search engines are all about helping people look for the right product or service, they would naturally gravitate towards reviews that also aim to inform people of how good (or bad) products or services are.
As such, it’s little surprise that Google now factors reviews into its SEO rankings. Google’s affinity for reviews is similar to the way the search engine rewards businesses that receive backlinks from other websites – the more other people are talking about your business, the higher Google ranks your site.
More of reviews and other matters on local SEO here.