Concentrate on running a great business and people will just leave great reviews, right? Well, that’s how most business owners think, and it’s just not the case.
It’s the businesses that put strategy behind getting their reviews (like yours) that will end up cleaning-up and generating their own self-perpetuating stream of footfall.
Follow the 5 steps below, and your reputation strategy will be ahead of at least 95% of other venues.
1. Complete your profiles
This is both easy and fundamental. Your profiles on all review sites should contain all of the information that you can enter.
With the thousands of venues that we work with, I am always surprised at how many have not completed their profiles. Here’s an example:
If you want to join me in my surprise, search your #1 query (for example “bbq restaurant in NYC”) and click on the top 10 venues. How many are incomplete? Let their mistake be your opportunity.
Why does it matter so much? Consider the interests of review sites. Their service is in finding the best possible venue for a prospective customer as frictionlessly as possible. If they provide a lacklustre option, that customer may not use their website again. It’s no surprise then that review sites don’t have much confidence in incomplete profiles.
The information you can enter varies by review site, however, these are the most important bases that you need to cover…
- Phone number
- Email address (For security, we recommend setting up a mailbox just for review sites)
2. Pick your categories wisely
Most review sites offer you the ability to categorise your venue, for example…
Most sites (Such as TripAdvisor) only permit you to select a few categories. You should ask yourself these questions when it comes to picking categories…
- Do they resonate with your venue and your primary offering?
- Are a considerable share of people going to select this category?
It’s common for venues to cross borders when it comes to the types of foods they offer. If this sounds like your venue, I would recommend looking up statistics on the favourite food types in your area or country and aligning with these.
3. Set up your website embeds
Almost all review sites offer embedded widgets for your websites. If you have the technical know-how in your team to add them to your website, it’s a great way to prompt visitors to leave a review.
Here are some of the top examples…
- TripAdvisor Widgets
- Google Embed
- Facebook Embed
While I can’t guarantee that this is true, we do have suspicions that review sites are a little bit more favourable to those who embed their widgets. It’s a great way to score some brownie points!
4. Incorporate reviews into your social media strategy
Did you know that 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations?
Every time you share a positive review with a prospective customer, you are reinforcing your brand image and nurturing potential new customers.
To accelerate this effect, you can share your “best of the best” reviews with your followers on social media. Typically, a quote over a contrasting background image is enough to do the job.
Whatever you do, just don’t accidentally post a negative review!
5. Leverage the power of WiFi to get more 5 ⭐️ reviews
What on earth does your WiFi have to do with your reputation?
Think of all of the guests that connect to your WiFi when they visit your venue. What if you could ask every one of them to leave a review based on their experience?
This would be a game-changer, right? A sure-fire way to tap into your loving customer base and make leaving a review so convenient that it accelerates your online reputation…