A couple weeks ago we covered the topic of negative online reviews. We discussed the importance of online reviews in the purchasing process (in a property management company’s case, this is homeowners and HOAs), why you must take the time to respond to negative reviews, and how to create a campaign to get more reviews. There is so much you can do to drive more online reviews for your business, which is why we were inspired to write another post on this topic. Follow the four steps below to help get more online reviews.
1). Build out your review listings
The first step to increase online reviews is to make sure your customers and residents have a good place to leave reviews. If a happy resident is hoping to write positive review, they may hold back if they arrive on an unclaimed, empty Yelp page.
While there are numerous review sites on the web, we recommend claiming listings on the following four sites at a minimum:
After claiming your listings, it’s time to start optimizing the page. Check out our recent Facebook Business Page post, for tips on setting up a comprehensive, informative page for your business. When optimizing these listings, be sure to include key information such as:
- Hours of operation
- About us overview
- Services offered
- Mission statement
- Address and contact information
- Profile photo and additional images
2). Make it easy for people to access your listings
Once your listings have been optimized, it’s time to start driving people to them. Here are some simple ways to drive traffic to these listings:
- Add links to your listings on your website
- Include calls-to-action in your email templates asking people to “Review us on Facebook!”
- Write blog posts about your listings and encourage readers to leave a review
- Post bulletins in your community management software driving residents to leave a review
- Share links to your listings in your social media content strategy
It’s important to take the time to respond to all reviews, both negative and positive. When someone leaves a positive review, respond by thanking them for taking the time to share nice comments about your business.
3). Offer incentives
Let’s face it, everyone is busy. Even if someone would be totally happy to write a review for your business, there’s a good chance they might have a hard time actually finding the time to write it. That’s where incentives come in to play. Offering something as small as a $5 gift card might be the extra push someone needs to make time to write a review.
If you have been actively promoting your review listings and aren’t seeing many reviews come through, it might make sense to send out an email to your customers offering $5 gift cards to everyone who leaves a review before a certain date. Do you have limited resources to spend on gift cards? Tweak the incentive to offer a limited number of gift cards, such as “we’re giving away $5 gift cards to the first 10 people who leave a review for our business on Facebook.”
4). Ask after positive interactions
According to a recent BrightLocal study, seven out of 10 consumers will leave a review if they’re asked to do so. To increase your chances to getting more reviews, and more specifically, more positive reviews, consider asking for reviews at the right time. If you have a positive interaction with a customer, ask them at the end of the conversation if they’d be willing to write a review for your business. Make it super easy for them to do so by following up with an email containing a direct link for them to leave a review. Train your property managers to ask residents for reviews in person after they’ve had positive interactions. Asking someone in person, especially when they’re happy with your business, will significantly increase your chance of getting them to write a happy review.
We’re not done talking about reviews just yet. Stay tuned to our blog, as we’ll be providing tips on how to get the most out of your Yelp listings in the near future.
When you actively work to improve the resident experience in the communities you manage, you'll start to see more positive reviews roll in. For tips on delighting your residents, download our free six-step guide today!