Google tends to be the first place a customer hears about your business. Whether they’re searching you out or not, what they read on Google will affect their opinion about your business; good or bad.
Accessibility is key.
For example, say I just moved into San Francisco and I need a haircut. With no experience or knowledge of barbershops or salons in the area, the first place I’m going to go is Google. I’ll type in “salons in San Francisco” and hundreds of results will pop up. I’m not about to dig through hundreds of results, so I’ll stick with the top 4 or 5 and check those out. (Fun fact: 90% of clicks on Google searches happen on the top 3 results). It is VITAL to get on the first page of results in your area, and it is even more important to get into the top 3 on that page.
People trust Google reviews.
According to Vendasta, 88% of people trust Google reviews as much as a personal recommendation. When reading Google reviews, people don’t simply look at the overall star rating. They READ the reviews! They want to know what kind of experiences others have had with your small business, so they don’t pay too much for a car repair or get a haircut that looks like it’s out of a 90’s yearbook.
You can shell out hundreds, even thousands of dollars towards improving your SEO, but no optimization effort will be as successful as obtaining more Google reviews. Your small business has worked hard on boosting its reputation. Let your customers talk you up! (P.S. it’s cheap…). Raw feedback and analysis from your customers is unmatched in importance, so go out of your way to urge your loyal customers to leave a review for you. Trust us, it’s worth it!