Last updated on March 27, 2024 by Antti Koskenrouta

Customer reviews are the new “currency” online. According to two studies, 91% of people read reviews online regularly, and they read 10 reviews before trusting a business. When your customers search for your company name reviews are often what pop up first. A staggering 78% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations from friends and family, highlighting the crucial role that online reputation plays in business success​. Google displays maps and business listings front and center of the search results page. Other review websites like Yelp or other industry-specific websites often rank high as well. Do you know what your customers see?

All things being equal, the company with better reviews tends to get the business. After all, the positive reviews from others act as “social proof” that others have had a positive experience, and your potential client will trust that.

Because your online reputation is an asset to your business, it is absolutely mandatory that you control these profiles. So, if you haven’t done it yet, you should claim the profiles immediately so that nobody else can. Can you imagine what could happen if your competitors managed to hijack your profile and started using it to hurt you?

You need to have lots of good reviews to dilute the effects of unflattering reviews

The old adage goes “If you’re unhappy, tell us, if you’re happy, tell others.” Unfortunately in the internet age, it’s usually the unhappy customers that are the most vocal. And with so many channels, a persistent person can do some real damage.

As a business owner, bad reviews can be like a poison pill. They can take a psychological toll, especially if you think the complaint is baseless. And if your company’s review count is low, a couple of bad reviews can tank your star rating, which is the most visible trust indicator. To prevent that, you need a mass of positive reviews to minimize the hit by a negative review.

Please note that you only want reviews by actual clients. And remember that if your company serves groups of people, it’s ok to ask reviews from everyone with a direct experience with your service. For example, if you run a restaurant, it’s ok to ask everybody in a party to leave a review, not just the person who made the reservation.

Whatever you do, don’t fall prey to the spam emails that offer to write fake reviews – those can really hurt you.

The key to success is automating the review request process.

Many business owners feel awkward asking for reviews. Plus doing it consistently is time consuming. Not to mention that people are busy, and usually won’t take the time to write reviews unless prompted. And prompted again. Sound familiar?

A winning combination to online reviews is automating the request and reminder process, and addressing unhappy customers’ issues before they post a bad review publicly.

When people have had a bad experience, they usually just want to be heard, understood, and their problem resolved. It behooves you to have this conversation offline, before it’s posted online. 

We recommend setting up an automated email system that asks a customer to fill out an internal review form first. That’ll allow you to address customer complaints, plus good reviews become fodder for testimonials on your website (just make sure you get the customer’s permission to use their review).

Then, if the customer had a good experience, you can send a follow-up email to ask them to leave you a review publicly. 

This approach checks all the boxes; It 1) automates the process so you don’t have to remember sending emails, 2) allows you to address issues before they become public, 3) gives you a steady supply of testimonials for the website and other marketing material, and lastly, 4) increases the review counts on your profiles.

Mukava has helped many clients to set up these systems, and we’d be happy to help you on your online reputation management journey. If you’d like to chat about your case, send us a message!


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