The importance of customer reviews
Customer reviews are the modern equivalent of good old word of mouth. We've all heard a family member or friend rave about the new restaurant in town or the new barbecue. In truth, it is in our nature to value such comments.
Trying something new seems less risky if someone has removed some of the risk for us. And that is exactly the role online reviews play. In fact, according to this study*, 84% of people trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation. That’s why reviews are so influential in our purchasing decisions, or at the very least, influencing us to visit a website. Here are some tips on how to successfully manage your own customer reviews.
*in English only
Look for opportunities to improve
On the surface, you might think that customer reviews primarily benefit other customers. This is partly true, but they also have other uses. Customer reviews are an incredible source of information for your dealership. They contain clues on how the dealership can improve the customer experience. Pay particular attention to trends. For example, if several customers mention the same problematic situation, there is no doubt that you can do better.
Ask and you shall receive
Not getting many reviews? Try to get into the good habit of asking customers to write a review on Google. It’s proven: 7 out of 10 customers will write a review for a business if asked. You can make the exercise enjoyable and set goals, for you and your team. Try to get at least 3 reviews per week. In no time, you will have dozens of them.
Managing negative reviews
A customer is really impressed with the proposed solution. Once the situation is resolved in private, you can take care of responding to the negative comment in public. First acknowledge the problem causing the comment, then describe the solution put in place. People will probably be impressed with the proposed solution and you might even find that the one star rating has turned into a higher star rating!
Make it a process
To really benefit from customer reviews, it is advisable to establish a process that will manage the reviews in a uniform way. The first step in the process is to ask customers to leave a review (remember the goal of receiving three per week). You should then review all the ratings to identify opportunities that need improvement. This task can be done once a week or every two weeks. Finally, make sure you have a process in place to handle negative reviews. These assessments should be handled first.
Customer reviews are here to stay. In fact, their influence on a company’s prosperity is set to grow even more as consumers discover new ways to share their experiences on new and existing platforms. Take the opportunity to better understand your customers and thus do better business, simply by listening to their comments.
Leave your comments below regarding your experiences with customer reviews.