How digital dominance is lost before they see your website
The internet is a vitally important tool for any business looking to be found. And whereas this is true of all businesses it’s especially true of small businesses servicing a local area with 82% of smartphone shoppers conducting ‘near me’ searches (Search Engine Land, 2018) with these types of searches increasing by over 900% in the past 2 years (Think with Google, 2018 - source).
These search events aren’t just an indication of why the internet is so important for businesses of all sizes but it also hints at a behavioural pattern of people then parting with their cash after these types of searches. 86% of people look up the location of a business on Google Maps and 78% of location-based mobile searches result in an offline purchase (Junto, 2019). If you want to drive people to your business who are looking to make a purchase then you need a good digital profile that helps them decide on your business over local competition.
Your business might have dozens of stellar testimonials on its website but that’s no good if people never make it there because they’ve already chosen one of your competitors!
To see an example of how a business might lose out to its competition before a single click onto a website simply go to Google Maps and type in a local service or restaurant.
With Google already doing the hard work in finding the local Google My Business pages nearby the next level of filtering can begin. When looking to quickly narrow down options the user has the option to select the result based on its position on the list, so long as they’re not averse to adverts, or make their own choice based on their own criteria.
A common filtering technique is to look at a business’s review score and the volume of reviews received. Combining the two filters out businesses with a high score from only a few reviews and businesses with a lower score but with a high volume of diverse feedback.
You may wonder why this is important when not everyone uses Google Maps for their online searches. The reason why it matters is that Google will often pull in its Maps results in normal organic searches. This map preview is one of several ways that Google pulls customer feedback into its results to help inform potential customers of the best business to work with.
This isn’t the only way that reviews are displayed in Google results, and it’s not just Google reviews that make an appearance in search results. When you search for a specific business their reviews from Facebook, Tripadvisor and Google are pulled into a special preview window that gives you the essential information needed for contacting that business.
If you’re looking to increase website traffic, or foot traffic into your business then owning the organic search results for your offering is absolutely key. It’s also important to ensure your online reviews reflect the real experience someone will have by buying from you.
So how can you influence the number of reviews you have online?
The best place to start is to develop a system to ask for feedback. This can be as simple as emailing customers asking for them to leave their feedback or by using things like QR codes within your store to make this easy for people to do on the move. You can link directly to your Google review page, or Facebook recommendations site but this may mean that unhappy customers vent their frustrations in public before you’ve had a chance to win them back by handling their concerns in private first.
With Review Tui you can create customised surveys which give you the chance to manage people’s experiences in your own time. It then ha a built-in system for asking for them to leave public reviews when the time is right.
You can even use unique links to the survey to see if any particular area is frequently underperforming. Let’s take the example of the hairdressers displayed earlier. You might choose to use a custom link for each stylist to see whether they’re creating an amazing experience for each of their customers, or if someone has room for improvement. That way you can keep the people that are invaluable for your company, and offer training to those that need it.
While most survey website simply asks for feedback, Review Tui is unique in that it does something with that feedback, by encouraging people to share their positive comments publicly. This means you get valuable insight into what you do well and receive the added bonus of business-winning public reviews too!
If your business is looking to get the edge on your local competition then why not try Review Tui and use customer feedback to win over more business and grow your company locally.