Small business owners know online reviews play an essential part to the success of their business. In fact, more people today rely upon business reviews for recommendations and trust those reviews left by other customers when making purchasing decisions. Furthermore, reviews do have an effect on your rankings in search engine results and helping you create a strong online presence.
How do you decide which review site is the best one to use for your business, among the growing number of review sites online? For small businesses online marketing, it is best to focus on the more popular review sites in your area including Facebook, Yelp, and Google. Yet, do you focus on one specific site or all three? Before answering this question, let’s take a look at what each review site has to offer, so you can get a better idea of how they work.
Social media is quickly becoming a source of reviews for many people, with Facebook being the most popular, since it is the most used social networking app. Plus, leaving a review on Facebook is relatively easy for most people.
One of the main benefits of Facebook reviews is they are directly incorporated into Google and Google reviews, so essentially, you are getting two reviews each time someone posts one on Facebook.
Yelp has been around for over a decade. It was once the leader in online reviews, before others started offering online reviews. One of the big problems with Yelp is not all reviews are posted for your business. Most people have to establish themselves on Yelp by completing multiple reviews for numerous businesses before their reviews even start to appear. It is not uncommon for a review left by one of your customers to not get approved, especially if this is their first review.
Yelp also discourages soliciting reviews from your customers and has an algorithm that can identify “unusual” review traffic. For instance, all of a sudden there is an excessive amount of reviews being left by your customers during a short period of time. While some of these reviews might be approved, the vast majority will probably not show up.
Google search algorithms do take Yelp reviews into account when displaying search results, so Yelp should not be entirely disregarded, but more on that in a moment.
Google is relatively new to the online review market. It started reviews when it launched its Google Local Search a few years ago. The key difference, is anyone can leave a review for your business after finding it in the search results. Google also does not discourage business owners from inviting people to review their business and even allows them to email or post the link to their Google review page. You do not have to worry about fake reviews, as Google has an algorithm to weed these out. Just like Yelp, reviews on Google are factored into search engine results.
For your small business, the best place to start is with Facebook reviews, since these are also added into your Google reviews. As mentioned above, you should not entirely discard Yelp. It is important to claim your business listing on Yelp, and monitor reviews, should some of your customers use this site.
For more information on how to set up your business profile on review sites and how to make reviews a part of your SEO strategies, call the SEO experts at Webryze by phoning (416) 900-1047 today!