Ahh, to show up on Google's first search page, your product or service prominently displayed, front and center, for all of the Internet to see. What a lovely thing, indeed. Everyone can find you; you are feeling pretty darn good about your business prospects, aren't you?
The question is: How can you make this a reality through product reviews?
Product reviews can be used in clever and search-friendly ways -- even helping you decide how to rank specific keywords and create healthy competition within your industry.
Many people read product reviews before making a decision to buy online, because if you can't touch it or test it and can only see a picture of it, you often wonder ... should I buy it?
If a product or service listed online provides an explanation of how something works and why it is necessary in your life, it becomes more attractive in the world of e-commerce. But satisfied customers who take the time to provide positive feedback are the best kind of assurance for future customers. According to iPerceptions Active Research, 63% of customers are more likely to make a purchase from a website that provides user reviews. That's a big number you can't afford to miss out on.
Word of Mouth
Perhaps your product is discovered in an online search and there is no review available. You have the more affordable product offering, but your company isn't well known. Many people will simply pass over your website if there are no reviews of your product. Sometimes it is just easier to purchase the product you know rather than an unfamiliar one, especially if no real people are taking part in a discussion. Who wants to risk it?
If there are positive reviews from real, honest-to-goodness consumers, other potential customers will take notice. This means sales for you -- and smiles all around.
Higher conversion rates are one of the main benefits of the online product review. SEO link-building strategies are discovered, implemented and tweaked for e-commerce sites, and product reviews add fresh new content to your site and therefore affect SEO positively.
The more reviews a product page has garnered, the more likely Google will be to feature your products in their search results. Google likes user-generated content, and we all know how fickle Google's heart can be. To be on Google's good side is a very good place to be, no matter who you are or what you are selling.
Cons Turned Pro
There is no way around it: Unhappy customers are going to surface if your website implements product reviews. However, addressing customer issues in a way that redeems your product and company helps you keep (or establish) your good name. Companies that choose to ignore customer concerns or delay responses to customer contact forms or requests for assistance are only hurting their company and product line.
Reaching out might turn an unhappy customer into a customer for life; I've seen it happen. Acknowledging a flaw, a misstep, or simply helping someone with a problematic product does wonders for your customer service reputation. Where others have done it badly, do it right; reap the rewards your competition lost out on.
Online reputation management is now a workplace department, monitoring everything from social media and beyond. Conduct a search and check review websites like Yelp and Angie's List and address any outstanding negative reviews. Also check your ratings on the BBB, Local.com, MerchantCircle, Epinions and Buzzillions. Keeping tabs on these critical rating websites allows you to build your brand and become the go-to service in your city or product in your industry.
Do you read product reviews before you purchase goods or services online? Do you write reviews? Have you turned a negative experience into a positive one for a customer based on a review? Let me know!