How to Make Online Reviews Pay - BIG!

Updated: Feb 7

Imagine if you could add an extra 9% revenue to your business with no additional infrastructure, no staff, no extra marketing.. no cost. Nothing. Would you do it?

These numbers are from our friends at Harvard. You know, the school in the US for clever people. These are not fools. They come from money (often) and love following it, earning it, or getting a chance to roll around in it!

They tell us - "An additional one-star Yelp rating causes a 5-9% increase in revenue." This is according to a Harvard Business School Working Paper, they found that every additional one-star Yelp rating causes an increase in the business’s revenue as high as 9%.

Well, when people like that, with the resources to study serious business issues like this speak - we listen.

Let's throw a number or two around. In real terms.

Say your business is turning over £1m a year but has only a few reviews on your chosen review site. Lets say Yelp for this exercise. Lets say 10 reviews.

If you can encourage more positive reviews, even 5 or 10, then you'll see an increase in your total star rating.

A bump of just one of those stars, with the above income, would mean an extra £90,000 a year to your bottom line!

That's £90,000 more you have to grow the business, reward your team.. or bathe in champagne! For FREE. Now that's damn smart business.

Not turning over £1m a year yet? No problem. It's still free money.

If you're closer to £500k then it's a lazy £45k with your name on it. £100k, then take a longer holiday with a spare £9k to spend at the Benidorm Buffet (god forbid).

Sadly though, remember, the same works in reverse - the odd grumpy punter who takes exception to your receptionist, the weather, or bad parking and marks you at say 1 star, can really pull down your TOTAL star rating. It could drop you from say 4.2 Stars to 3.5. Ouch. There goes Benidorm this year!

So, here's what you do..

  1. Try adding a “Review us on Yelp” sign at the cash register

  2. Or “Please give us five stars!” on customers’ receipts (note 5 stars!)

  3. Phone your best 20-30 Customers/Patients/Friends (kidding) to see how they're doing - are they happy? If so, ask them to review you now

  4. Get an Invitation to Review from your Yelp account (or whichever review site you are on) and add it to an email campaign which you'll send to your customer base. It's a simple link generated by the site to encourage traffic and reviews.

  5. Include the Invitation to Review in your email footer and marketing efforts

  6. Offer your customers an incentive if you need to, but be honest, don't say "every 5 star review gets a free xxx" people are on to that one and it backfires. Try "every review submitted today gets a free xxx". MOST people appreciate the gesture and will review you positively.

Following the KISS Philosophy (not old guys in makeup - the Keep It Simple Stupid business method) let's never forget;

More stars = more money.

Less stars = less money.

A higher star rating means more money in your account. It's that simple and it's been proven beyond all doubt.

The steps above are quick and, relatively painless. We do get told all the time by clients though that are simply too busy "manning the shop", focussing on what they are great at.

We get it. We're rubbish at dentistry, wouldn't attempt a nose job and frankly doubt we'd be able to run a Chinese takeaway!

So, if you'd rather use your skills for what they're meant to do - or focus on your core business and keep your clients happy, then why not get in touch to see how we can help take care of your reputation and brand management for you, PLUS a whole lot more really clever stuff to get you some of that good free money!

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