Reviews, testimonials and referrals are important to growing a contracting business. In fact, reviews are the backbone upon which a business can establish a working relationship with their local community. In today’s world, people can come to know you, like you and trust you (or not) via the reviews they read about your business. This makes reviews a tremendous tool to use in expanding your contracting business.
The Internet has added a new dimension to the importance of business reviews and testimonials. The more people use the Internet as their main source of reference for selecting a particular business or service provider, the more impact online reviews will have on your firm. In fact, recent studies show that most homeowners today use online reviews and recommendations as their main criteria for evaluating a contractor before they hire him.
Importance of Google Reviews
Google reviews play a key role in how your company website is ranked in search engines online. A high ranking will attract more visitors to your site. The more traffic your site receives, the greater your chances of getting new customers and increasing sales. Good reviews will prompt consumers to research your business online. A professional website that clearly explains your portfolio, is responsive to mobile devices and has excellent reviews is sure to attract new clients.
By soliciting Google reviews from customers, colleagues and clients, you can boost your online presence and optimize your marketing strategy. Ongoing positive reviews will give your contracting business greater visibility and credibility with consumers in your area. Online reviews can build trust between you and consumers; people are more likely to hire a contractor they feel they can trust.
The Effect of Positive Reviews on a Contracting Business
As consumers place so much weight on reviews and testimonials, online reviews have the potential to make or break a contracting business. Here are some recent statistics to back this claim. Studies show that:
- Approximately 90% of consumers looking for a contractor check online reviews before giving them a call. Of these, 92% will contact you if you have a 4-star rating or above.
- Consumers will spend up to 30% more for contracting work if your company has excellent reviews.
- Good reviews can generate up to 18% more sales for your business and increase your conversions by as much as 11%.
Even negative reviews can have a positive impact on your business if handled right. Studies reveal that approximately 86% of consumers will bypass your contracting firm if it has received negative reviews. By responding positively to these reviews, however, you could turn these stats around. Rather than criticize individuals for giving bad reviews, offer solutions to the problem. Consumers respect contractors who try to make things right.
In addition to reviewing the quality of your services, reviews and testimonials, provide a forum to add valued content to your website. The more reviews you get, the more content you generate for your site. This can help boost your site’s SEO. Local reviews are particularly important for your contracting business as they reveal the opinions of customers in your local community.
The Benefits of Soliciting Google Reviews
There are various ways Google reviews can benefit a contracting business. Positive reviews and testimonials can be used as a marketing tool to promote your business. At the same time, reviews can reveal areas in your business structure that need to be improved. Reviews can also increase your company’s online presence to attract more traffic to your site.
Having said this, however, it’s imperative you use Google reviews correctly to benefit from what they have to offer. Genuine reviews from customers who have used your services is what you’re after – not fabricated reviews or reviews that were “bought” by offering a reward in exchange for people’s opinions and thoughts. It never pays to offer an incentive such as a free product or service in exchange for a review. This practice goes against the terms Google has laid out for this service and will hurt your rating. It can also undermine customer trust.
Importance of Testimonials and Reviews to SEO Strategy
In addition to what your company does, Google uses how others perceive your business to deliver relevant search results to people looking for information in your line of work. This is where testimonials and reviews come in. Google uses the number of reviews and testimonials you have on your site along with customer rating to determine how you rank in local searches. Reviews and testimonials also add valued content to your site which will contribute to a higher rating.
If you have a fair number of positive reviews and a high customer rating, you’re more likely to show up on top of local Google searches for your line of work. A high rating will give your business greater credibility to consumers in your community.
As a contractor, you have much to gain by soliciting Google reviews for your website. At the same time, Google reviews aren’t the end-all in getting the recognition you desire. Business reviews can be found on such sites as YouTube, Trip Advisor, Yelp, Facebook and numerous others. When you solicit Google reviews for your website, however, you have greater control over the reviews you post. This allows you to maximize the effect these reviews have on your target audience.
How Do You Solicit Google Reviews for Your Site?
The best way to encourage your customers to write a testimonial or review is to provide them with excellent service. Satisfied customers will be more than happy to provide you with a positive review.
Additionally, you can incorporate a way to solicit reviews in your marketing strategy. You can start by asking family, friends and colleagues to write a review of services your company rendered. Then create ways to make it easy for customers to post reviews on your site, such as putting a link where they can easily see it. Encourage your customers to use this link to post a review of completed contracting services or projects. This keeps your reviews fresh and current.
It takes time and effort to obtain positive Google business reviews. Your first step is doing great work so customers will be motivated to write up a positive review of your business. Positive reviews are worth their weight in gold. They improve your standing in Google, generate customer trust and help you build a loyal customer base. In short, Google reviews are a foundational building block that can help your business succeed both now and in the future.