Those Reviews Are More Than Just Feedback -- They Are Rankings Generators
While reviews on your Google Business Page can be a double-edged sword, we know one thing for certain. They can have a serious effect on your relevance in local searches and can affect your local SEO rankings.
With Google, it is all about relevance. And reviews on your Google Business Page offer your business relevance: i.e. credibility and trust.
Who Does Google Put Trust In?
Google trusts its users. While many site owners have tried to game the rankings system throughout the search engine’s history, Google trusts and rewards user experience.
So when Google sees reviews, it knows that not only is your business a real one, but users are interacting with it and helping others make decisions about it. The same way that reviews tell other users whether to use your business, they also tell Google how trustworthy and relevant your business (and website) is.
Reviews tell Google that:
- Your business is real. -- Spam websites proliferate online every day. When your Google Business Profile generates reviews, it tells Google that you are a real viable business and people are engaging with it.
- Real people trust your business. -- When real people review your business positively, the more attractive it becomes to other searchers. Do people really trust online reviews? Yes! According to BightLocal, nearly four out of five consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
Throughout its history, Google has updated algorithms to offer users the most relevant searches for their queries. For local searches in particular, reviews can make a big difference in who sees your listing.
Over time, there has been a steady increase in the amount of importance placed on Google Business Pages and reviews by industry professionals. But while these are important, it is also essential for a business owner to keep on top of their listing, engage with their customers, and address negative reviews and issues in a businesslike manner.
So How Are Your Reviews?
Local SEO is critical to any business that relies on traffic from people in their own geographic area. Consequently, ensuring that you are focused on local rankings is important to get in front of the right customers and clients. You can do this by
- Setting up and optimizing a Google Business Page. This gives your business a public identity and presence outside your website, i.e. more digital real estate.
- Actively asking clients and customers for reviews. Unfortunately, human nature being what it is, people are more likely to write a negative review than a positive one. Asking for reviews from customers and clients who have had good experiences with your business is important to keep positive reviews far outweighing negative ones.
- Encouraging reviewers to mention specific products or services that they were happy with in their review. While specifics create genuine and convincing reviews, they can also help with branding and keywords.
- Making sure to respond to reviews. Regardless of whether a review is positive or negative, a response makes your business more approachable and shows that you care by engaging with your customers and trying to resolve issues.
A well-optimized and updated Google Business Page can be an essential part of your local SEO and drive important local rankings.
Using Your Google Business Page as a Key SEO Strategy
If you are a business that relies on customers in your own backyard, focusing on your local SEO is critical. Using your Google Business Page effectively can create great benefits as part of your total digital marketing strategies.
At Fuel Web Marketing, we can help develop the best possible Google Business Page and offer other valuable marketing strategies for those business owners who want a global reach or those who rely on customers and clients from around the corner. Contact one of our consultants to see how we can help target the right customers for your business.