The Big List of Online Customer Review Sites
Online customer reviews are very important to the growth of your small business. The numbers might vary from survey to survey but the results are clear. Each year the influence of online customer reviews on the buying habits of increasingly mobile and internet-savvy consumers continues to grow with most estimating that over 90% of consumers are looking at online reviews.
Additionally, customer reviews have a direct impact on ranking in local search results. Consistently earning and posting positive reviews on sites that matter most (like Google) give you an opportunity to show up in Local Pack and Google Map listings at the top of local search results. Diversifying your review sites populates the internet with positive links that search engines draw from when someone is searching online for your business.
And that is just the tip of the iceberg. Read back in the Reputation Loop blog to learn more about the importance of customer reviews. But if you already get it, and you are working on your reputation management plan, here is a list customer review sites you should consider. Review sites that pertain to your business, claim and optimize your business profiles, and learn how to manage your online reputation by gathering, monitoring, and promoting your online customer reviews.
· ALSO READ: Latest Research Shows Importance of Local Reviews
· ALSO READ: Using Customer Reviews to Improve SEO
Top Online Customer Review Sites (in no particular order)
If you want your reviews and star ratings to show up in Google search results you have to get reviews posted to your Google My Business profile. With the best reviews in your local area you can show up in the Local Pack and prominently on Google Maps results. To optimize for search set up your verified account, completely filled out with photos and accurate name, address and phone number. With a stream of highly rated reviews you will rise to the top of Google’s local search results. Also see Bing Places to cover your bases.
Over 13 million BBB business review are read every month. Where the BBB is different is they have a customer review verification process that includes verifying the reviewers email and sending the review to the business for further verification. According to BBB, 41% of respondents to their survey said they trusted BBB reviews ahead of Google, Angie’s List and Yelp. Not exactly an unbiased opinion but with over 390,000 business using the BBB accreditation seal to promote their business, it’s clear that the trust is there.
Angie’s List is a highly trusted review site largely because users have to pay for membership. This investment cuts down on the fake reviews that can crowd free review sites. Reviewers cannot be anonymous, so you’ll find more thoughtful and useful reviews. It’s free to set up a page for your business and memberships start at around $50. A small investment considering you’ll get in depth reviews of contractors, businesses, and service providers you plan to spend thousands of dollars with.
Trip Advisor is one of the most trusted review sites for everything travel (and local) that has to do with hotels, airlines, restaurants, venues, and attractions. Optimize your business listing by appealing to Trip Advisor’s ranking algorithm which focuses on quantity, quality, and how recent a review is. Enter your business name to claim your listing and find out your cost.
Yelp is the well-known free review site that lets you rate any business on a five-star scale. It’s free to set up your business listing. If for some reason you have not done this, stop reading and go do it right now! This powerful and popular website let’s reviewers (any soul with internet access) create a business listing if they want to leave a review but can’t find your business listed.
I’m sure you know that you can “Like” a business on Facebook. But you can also rate and review businesses on their Facebook page. Ratings are an average of all public star ratings, but reviewers can select other audience categories like “Friends” which would not be calculated in your page’s average star rating. Only people in the chosen category would be able to see star reviews if the “Public” audience is not chosen. Facebook does not moderate reviews so if one shows up that you think should be removed you will need to report it to Facebook by clicking “I don’t like this review” on your page.
Review Sites for Software Businesses
People who buy software rely on G2 Crowd to provide useful customer reviews to compare and make buying decisions. Another five-star review site, G2 Crowd goes further by asking reviewers questions like “What business problems are you solving?” and “What benefits have your realized?”. Plus users like that reviews show if they are validated and if the reviewer is a current user. To add your product simply click on “Add Your Product” in the footer, log in with a LinkedIn profile, and fill in a form.
TrustRadius authenticates its users through LinkedIn, allowing reviewers to see what their connections think about a software. But reviews can still be anonymous. Users can read reviews or compare several aspects of a company side-by-side. Create a listing for free and you will get notified when reviews are posted. TrustRadius also allows you to respond to reviews and provides paid packages that include enhanced listings, review programs and lead generation services.
· ALSO READ: Reputation Marketing in 5 Steps
More Review Sites to Consider
YP (Yellow Pages) – this business listing site is a great place to list your business, and customers can leave reviews, but their business model relies heavily on pushing ad sales so be clear on what you want to accomplish before you join.
SuperPages – like Yellow Pages you can claim your free listing and SuperPages users can find your business and you can pay to advertise on their network.
SiteJabber – this is a review site for online businesses. Users can make better choices and avoid scams by reading reviews. It’s free to create and manage your business profile, even respond to reviewers.
Want Help Managing Your Customer Reviews?
Reputation Loop – get a free demonstration on how Reputation Loop can manage, distribute, and promote your customer reviews and manage your business listings while you build a five-star online reputation with features like feedback generation, monitoring, reporting, and social media integration.
More and more, you will have less contact with your customers before they make their buying decisions. Window shopping, test driving and sampling are now largely done virtually instead in-store. Still, more than ever consumers want to trust a business before they spend their hard earned money. Let consumers know you are the right choice by actively monitoring and managing your customer reviews and online reputation.
Use this free Local Score grader below to search the most important business listings and customer review sites to see where your business’s online presence is working hard for you and quickly find where you can make improvements.