Online Reputation Management Starter Series, Part 2: Which Review Sites Should I Monitor?
A solid online reputation management (ORM) strategy is not one-size-fits-all. You have to tailor it to best suit the needs of your organization.
In Part 1 of our ORM Starter Series, we provided valuable information and tips about defining your Online Reputation Management goals, where to focus your efforts and how to secure executive buy-in.
In Part 2, we explore the highest-impact review sites — Google and Facebook — as well as a host of specialty sites in greater detail, to help you determine the best plan of action for maximum impact.
So Many Sites, So Little Time
Your Online Reputation is co-created with consumers across hundreds of review and social sites. But spending equal time managing hundreds of marginal review sites and directories doesn’t make sense: You have to focus on the ones that will provide the greatest impact.
Start with Google
Google is arguably the most important review site, thanks to local search. Nearly all internet searches — 89.3 percent — are carried out on Google.
If your business is missing from the first page of a consumer’s search results, you’ll lose their business. On the flip side, if you show up in Google’s local 3-pack — the top three results of a “Near Me” search — your chances of capturing that business opportunity rise sharply.
Optimize Your Google My Business Profile
The first step is to claim and optimize your Google business listings for all your locations. An ORM platform can help you do this quickly and effectively, ensuring all information contained in the listings is accurate — including address, phone number, website link, business hours, photos and more.
Selecting the appropriate categories for your business is also critical — Moz found categories are Google’s third most important ranking factor for local search.1
Nearly all internet searches — 89.3 percent — are carried out on Google.
Ensure Lots of Recent Google Reviews
About 44 percent of consumers say a review must be written within one month to be relevant. What’s more, 88 percent of consumers form an opinion about a product or service after reading up to 10 reviews.2
Here are key ways in which the quantity, quality and recency of your reviews determine whether a consumer will find and choose your business:
- Google ratings show up alongside business names on Google searches.
- Google shows the best businesses first, to increase user satisfaction.
- In mobile searches, review counts and scores affect ranking and are prominently displayed.
- Google Map searches display reviews with your business name.
- Google Map searches pull the highest-rated businesses first.3
Simply put, a healthy volume of recent Google reviews not only boosts ratings and search rankings — it can literally put you on the map.
Pay Attention to Facebook
Any Facebook user can now write Facebook reviews on any local business page, and all reviews are public. As part of the review process, they assign star ratings. Your star ratings on Facebook affect your bottom line:4
- If your rating is 4 stars or above, 92 percent of users are likely to visit your business.
- If your rating is 3 stars, only 72 percent of users will use your business.
- If your rating is 2 stars, only 27 percent are likely to use your business.
Given Facebook has nearly two billion users globally,5 ensuring that customers review you — and are actively monitoring, liking and responding to Facebook reviews — are essential ORM strategies.
‘Check Us Out On Yelp’
Yelp is also critical. As much as 90 percent of Yelp users say reviews affect their purchasing decisions,6 so make sure your profile on this key review site presents an accurate view of the level of service you provide.
Don’t Ignore Key Industry-specific Review Sites
Depending on your industry, focus on niche sites, as well. Below are some key sites by industry:
This list is not all-inclusive. A trusted Online Reputation Management platform can help you distribute online reviews evenly across the sites that matter most to your business, while monitoring all relevant sites to optimize your overall online reputation across all sites.
Need Help? Managed Services May Be the Answer
If you have a small team or one that’s really busy, you can outsource the ORM work to a provider. Doing so can save you time and headaches, while providing peace of mind that your online reputation is in capable hands.
Choosing the Right ORM Platform: What to Look For
To maximize your investment, you should qualify your options carefully and consider the following attributes:
- A comprehensive solution with integrated capabilities that span all aspects of ORM
- An automated platform that scales reliably across thousands of locations
- Intuitive dashboards that provide at-a-glance insight
- Analysis and reporting tools that provide actionable insights to improve customer experience
Let us help you develop an Online Reputation Management strategy that will help boost your organization’s star ratings and improve your reviews. Contact us at Reputation.com.