Creative Ways to Get New Reviews for Your Small Business

All small business owners would like to think that if they have a great product or service and work hard, then the customers will come. In a perfect world, that would be true, but in practice that’s usually not the case.

So what makes a consumer walk through your door or visit your online store? There are a variety of factors at play, but one thing is for certain — 80% of consumers perform an online search to find a local business. As they sort through the results, 91% will use online reviews to help make their decision.

We cannot emphasize enough how important online reviews are to your business. As much as you may hate it, the number of ratings and your “star ratings” matter. And the only way you’re going to bump these things up is to keep getting new, positive reviews from your customers. Your business should be actively encouraging happy customers to leave their feedback. Here are five creative ways you can do just that.

Send a personalized “thank you” email

One of the easiest ways to follow-up with a customer is through email. Taking the time to write a personalized note thanking a customer for his or her business will go a long way toward making a customer feel valued and special. It also provides the perfect opportunity to ask for a review. Wrap up your email by letting the customer know how much you appreciate feedback and drop a link to your profile on popular review sites.

Offer a small discount

You’ve probably heard that it’s not OK to pay for reviews, but there is a way to incentivize your customers without breaking any rules. Offering a small discount on your products/services in exchange for a review is totally fine. A gift card to the local coffee shop or your own business can also work. Just make sure you’re making it clear to customers that the perk is available for leaving a review, not leaving a good review.

Host a monthly contest for reviewers

Again, there are ways to offer customers a reward for leaving a review without looking like you’re buying your star ratings. This is one of them. Host a monthly giveaway where anyone who has left a new review is entered into a drawing for a prize. An easy way to track this is by having customers take a screenshot of their review and emailing it to you.

Add requests to customer receipts

Every customer who leaves your business has to “check out” in some way, right? So why not work your review request into that process? Staple a card to the receipt that asks the customer to write a review for you, or add a few sentences at the bottom of the invoice that says something like, “Let us know how we did today! Share your feedback.” This method is a bit more forward than others, but if you do it right it won’t create a pushy vibe.

Just ask

Sometimes the most creative solution is the one that is so obvious that no one ever thinks of it. In this case, that is to simply ask customers for a review. You would be surprised at how many will agree to leave your business feedback if you just ask.

Pro Tip: You can’t just sit back and let the new reviews roll in. You have to respond to them! Whether it’s a glowing review or a negative one, make sure you’re taking the time to acknowledge what your customers are saying about their experience. Thank them for their feedback and use it to improve and grow your business.

Of course, growing and managing your reviews is just one piece of the marketing puzzle. If you’re looking to advance your business’ marketing efforts from initial strategy through execution of multi-faceted marketing mix, Higgins Marketing Group can help you do it. Contact us today to set up a consultation and start generating more sales leads!

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