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How do I increase my Google star rating?

Google star ratings are often used by customers to assess how credible a brand is. So how do you improve yours?

The place to start is, of course, by providing a satisfying experience to all of your customers. This will ensure your customers are generally happier and willing to leave a positive Google review. But don’t worry, that’s not all. 

There are some practical steps you can take to increase your Google star rating without making a single change to your current Customer Experience. The truth is, you probably serve hundreds of happy customers every month that aren’t yet engaging with online reviews. To increase your star rating, you simply need to reach out to these existing customers.  

What is a Google star rating? 

When a customer leaves a review about a business on Google, they are asked to rank their experience out of 5 stars. A 1-star rating reflects a poor experience, and a 5-star rating is excellent. As more customers rank the brand, Google reviews will calculate the average rating and display it on the business profile. Alongside the location, contact details, opening hours, and link to the website, these ratings can have a big influence on prospective consumers. 

Why does it matter?

A Google star rating is useful for customers deciding whether a brand is worth buying from. In one simple glance, they can deduce what the brand is like to deal with from a customer's perspective. For that reason, 98% of consumers use customer reviews and 58% believe that a high star rating is crucial. If your rating is 3 stars or lower, you should take immediate action. The benefits of a high Google star include:

Stronger brand trust with customers

With a higher average rating, prospective customers have more reason to believe that a brand will deliver on its promises. Online reviews provide social proof from an objective party who has experienced the brand for themselves. The more positive reviews there are from these previous customers, the more dependable they must be.   

More brand visibility

Google search favours credibility and authenticity. To assess if a business is worth ranking on a search page, local search will take the star rating into account. If your brand’s star rating is favourable, your business will generally be more visible to prospective customers when they search for it.

Better search visibility and clickthrough rate

When customers view your business profile, they are far more likely to click on your website if the star rating is high. In fact, listings with positive reviews can receive up to 29% more clicks. Therefore, to increase your online traffic, improving your star rating should be a priority. 

Improving your existing Google star rating

The only way to improve your Google star rating is to get more positive reviews (4 to 5 stars) than negative ones (1 to 3 stars). Most of this will come from delivering a great service to your customers but there are a few other steps you can take as well. 

Send a review link

To make reviews as straightforward and accessible as possible, send your customers a review link. This way they can simply follow it to the review page and share their input instantly. With Review Tui, you can use campaign links to incorporate links into any channel including email, social media, live chat, and even QR codes. 

Engage with all feedback 

While it can be overwhelming at first, responding to all customer reviews should be part of your customer feedback strategy. With real-time alerts from your Customer Feedback Management platform, you can easily reply as soon as a customer has given their score. For 55% of customers, a response from the company is just important as the review itself. 

While it can be tempting to ignore negative reviews, do not make that mistake. These are opportunities to demonstrate empathy and take on board what customers have to say. Thank them for their feedback, provide a relevant solution, and offer to speak with them further internally. In doing so, other customers can see that your brand is friendly, supportive, and willing to listen. 

Identify brand advocates

Increasing your star rating can only be achieved with happy customers so start by identifying those that are most likely to rave about your brand. To find your top brand supporters and get more 5-star reviews, reach out to those who frequently buy your products, engage on social media, and click through your email newsletters. These people are generally willing to write a review and will have more positive things to say. 

Communicate through multiple channels

By communicating with customers at various touch points in the buyer’s journey, you have a better chance of receiving a review from them. This is known as an omnichannel approach because it uses multiple channels and allows you to gain a deeper and more holistic understanding at every stage of their experience.

Use software to make internal feedback public

Sometimes, customers will share their positive feedback with your company internally. To make the most of this positivity and share it with other prospective customers, you need a way for customers to relay it on a review site. If you use intuitive customer feedback software, customers can easily copy and paste their internal feedback onto a review site. If customers only have to write their feedback once and can share it with minimal effort, your ratings are sure to increase. 

Thank your customers

Ultimately, your goal should be to improve your Google star rating over the long term, so don’t forget to think ahead. After the customer has left a review, you must thank them for their input. While this won’t increase your rating in the short term, it will make them feel valued and therefore more likely to leave a review the next time they purchase from you. 

When it comes to online reviews and customer feedback, the right tools simplify the process. At Review Tui, we decided there was a need for an adaptable feedback management platform. Our software makes it easy to increase reviews, build surveys, track results, and analyse data, so that you can get on the same page as your valued customers.

Sign up for updates and be the first to know when our platform launches later this year. Or download our guide where we share expert advice to get you started today. 

Download our free customer feedback strategy guide