How small businesses can make the most of disruptive technologies

New Technologies Concept

From Uber to Airbnb to TaskRabbit, consumers have never had more options when it comes to disruptive technological tools. These technologies are transforming the way customers connect, share and experience new products and services across virtually every industry. This shift has fueled the creation of entirely new business sectors, but it has also made more traditional businesses vulnerable to the growing power that consumers wield.

Share your business’s story through the visual world of Instagram


They say a picture speaks a thousand words, and that’s true in every sense on the social media platform Instagram. With over 300 million monthly users, Instagram is one of the fastest growing social networking sites today, used by individuals and businesses alike. When leveraged correctly, Instagram can be a powerful sales tool that helps enhance a brand’s visibility and customer experience.

NEW! Monitor and manage your Instagram business page from the social tab

Our customers love the ability to manage their social media accounts from the dashboard, and now they have even more control. We’re excited to announce that for Business now includes support for Instagram, in addition to Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and YouTube. All you have to do is add your Instagram credentials to your account and you’ll be able to begin managing it from within the platform. Just follow these simple instructions:

Is your business website ready for the Google mobile-friendly update?

Responsive Design

With consumers increasingly using their smartphones to look for information, review businesses and engage in social conversations, Google has created a mobile-specific search algorithm for users of small-screen devices. The algorithm, which was rolled out on April 21, 2015, will rank websites differently on mobile devices, with a significant boost for sites that are mobile-optimized.

NEW! Request Reviews Metrics tab lets you optimize email templates for better customer engagement

Request Review Metrics Screenshot

You asked and we delivered! We are excited to announce our new Request Reviews Metrics feature (in beta mode), which makes it easier for you to monitor and improve the performance of your review-request emails. Review Request Metrics gives you a detailed view of delivery and open rates, click activity, bounces and other factors that reflect how engaged your customers are.

Here’s a quick overview of each component, along with best practices on how you can leverage your data to improve email engagement: study reveals why online reviews are like equity for dealerships

Car dealership

For consumers, buying a car is the biggest purchasing decision they’ll ever make, second only to a home. They spend valuable time and effort researching the brand, features, pricing and dealerships, and they turn to online reviews for guidance prior to making a buying decision.

A recent study conducted by sheds light on the growing importance of online reviews within the automative industry—in fact, 7 out of 10 car shoppers stated that reviews of dealerships are a ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ important part of the research process. Wins Fifth Consecutive Stevie Award for Customer Service

Stevie Award Golden Statues

The Stevie® Awards are business awards that recognize excellence from both individuals and organizations, chiefly in sales and customer service. Created in 2002, the Stevies have become a guidepost for the most service-minded companies around the globe. This year’s results are in and it’s official: 2015 marks the fifth year that’s Customer Support department has won an award for excellence! Because online firms are infrequently recognized in this area, we are especially delighted to be spotlighted by the Stevies.

Real-time tweets to appear in Google results once again: what it means for your business

Google + Twitter

Twitter and Google recently struck a deal to integrate tweets into Google search pages in real time. Google previously had to crawl Twitter’s site to find user content, but with this new integration, tweets will be fed automatically to Google as they are posted. This means that Google will be able to show tweets in the search results instantly. The change will be rolled out sometime over the next few months, according to sources involved with the project.

Attention doctors: study shows positive reviews more important than ever

Doctor Patient

A recent study conducted by Software Advice drives home the importance of online reviews for doctors and other healthcare practitioners. The study shows that online reviews are becoming increasingly important in a patient’s decision-making process, mirroring the trend we have seen in virtually every service-based industry.

Here are the key findings:

How to make online reviews work for you—not against you

woman typing

Here at, we’ve always maintained that it’s better to encourage positive reviews than to try to fight negative ones. In fact, as online reviews become more ubiquitous, this is quickly becoming the only effective strategy to manage online reviews—a lesson several businesses in the hospitality industry recently learned the hard way.