how to rank on google

How to Get Your Small Business Seen on Google

Small business or not, you need a solid means of promoting your business and generating leads if you must succeed in your venture. It’s no secret that things have changed drastically for businesses when it comes to marketing and the good ole traditional methods just don’t cut it anymore.

Why is visibility on Google important?

Well, why not! Everyone, including you, depends on Google to tell them if they are in love, what gifts to buy for friends, and, most importantly where to shop. Having visibility on Google helps you to change your game the way most big and successful businesses have done and makes your customers come to you.

How can it be done?

Now, you are asking the right questions. Visibility on Google can be achieved by fixing the following key areas of your business:

  • Website Design
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  • Social Media Marketing

Website Design

Your website on Google is your virtual office. It is where your potential clients make the first contact and where they will decide if you are worth their time, trust, and money.

Start by creating a user-friendly website; make navigation easy for your services to be right out there. Next, fill that website with ‘valuable’ content. The emphasis here is on valuable because if it’s all fluff, no one would read more than a few lines and there will be no conversion for sales.

Make sure your content sells your business without sounding pushy or filled with keywords. Give something back with a blog and remember to make your website mobile friendly.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

As a business owner, you soon discover that setting up a website is the easy part; SEO, on the other hand, can be tricky because it evolves constantly.

It is what helps your website show up in web users’ queries. SEO is a broad aspect that involves a technical side; using appropriate keywords, tags, alt text, links, and much more is necessary to rank on Google search.

Reviews are also a big part of SEO and ranking highly on Google.

It may take time to build SEO for your site and experience results, but this is best done by a professional.

Social Media Marketing

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn are filled with millions of potential clients just waiting to see what you have to offer. You must leverage social media channels to improve your customer base online.

Most of these platforms offer paid advertising services, Google does too, and with proper planning, you can establish a solid online presence using social media.

Share business updates, helpful content, or regular promotion to get more people to know about your business. All links will take them to your website. This tells the search engine you have something good going on and prompts the system to rank your website for others to see.

Although the points explained above are the most vital, there are other factors to put in place for your business to get seen on Google. For faster results, hire professionals to help you.

Posted in SEO
hotel reviews

4 Reputation Management Mistakes in the Hotel Industry

Reputation is everything. It determines what existing and prospective clients think about your business. Statistics show that over 93% of bookers peruse online reviews on platforms like TripAdvisor before making a decision.

Another 53% won’t look twice at your service if it lacks another guest’s affirmation. Hence, in the hotel industry, maintaining a good business reputation is what prevents your business from fading away.

You see hospitality is a big word. What one customer might consider professional service, another customer may believe that it lacks the necessary flexibility to suit their needs.

This puts most hotels in a difficult position, but thankfully there’s no need to panic. Here are four reputation management mistakes to avoid to keep you ahead of competitors.

Lack of personalized customer experience
When it comes to hospitality, guests want to feel heard and cared for. To you, it may seem like you see hundreds of guests every day, but to them, they are experiencing your service for the first time. As they say, first impressions matter and keeping the little things in check can go a long way to provide a great customer experience.

Everyone loves a hotel that caters to their needs impressively. So, avoiding a lack of personalized customer experience can greatly maintain your positive reputation.

  1. Not asking for reviews
    You have to make it happen. Appearing on popular hotel review sites presents your business is a good way before bookers but you must supplement this with recent, positive, and high numbers of reviews.

    Not all guests will be motivated to go searching for how to leave a review, so you need to develop professional strategies to ask and collect their reviews. Automate the process and make it seamless.

  2. Forgetting the value of touchpoints
    Touchpoints are the areas at which your guests interact with you. They can include during bookings, when they arrive at the hotel, updates, calls, and using ads. Maximizing the power of these touchpoints helps you to have a long-term association with each client. It gives you the opportunity to engage and impress.

    Use various means such as emails, calls, SMS, and others to communicate with your guests. Keep engagement high and personalized with a human touch. The aim is to offer a full experience and build recall value for the growth of your positive reputation.

  3. Not using a guest review management strategy
    There has to be an active strategy to keep your guest reviews in check. Have an experienced team that can respond professionally and interactively to all reviews. Gather intel from them to improve your services. Weigh what guests say about your service and what they say about your competitors. Analyze this information and make the necessary adjustments.

    Remember that these reviews shape people’s perception of your business and working without a management strategy can be dangerous.

To make avoiding these mistakes easier, contact a review company for review management services. The pros at The Review Generator will work with you to create a seamless online reputation strategy for your hotel business.

customer leaving review

Less Than Half of Companies Ask For Reviews

It’s common knowledge that reviews can seriously impact your business success. The statistics are everywhere and the numbers of prospects who depend on what existing customers have to say about your product or service is devastatingly high.

However, it is equally surprising to know that less than half of businesses ask their customers for a review.

Leaving the most important parts of your business to chance is one of the biggest mistakes any business owner can make. Hopefully, by the end of this article, you would see why it’s dangerous to be a part of this number of companies who ignore review management strategies.

Online Reputation Management – Best Practices

Recent surveys have shown that only 40% of small businesses encourage their clients to leave positive reviews. This means a staggering 60% ignore this reputation management practice. It could be because they expect happy customers to leave positive reviews or they believe that ignoring this strategy will keep them safe with no reviews on the web.

The thing is, regardless of if you allow reviews on your site or not, there are reviews out there that speak of your service. People are creating a reputation for your business on their own terms and you need to take control of the situation.

While you need reviews to speak for your services or products, you must focus on getting more positives and fewer negatives.

The fact that you are confident your clients are happy doesn’t mean they will leave a great review. The reason for this is that people are more likely to complain than compliment a service. It’s almost human nature, and this puts your business in a difficult position.

Successful businesses maintain a great advantage over their competitors because they know the relevance of giving clients a nudge when it comes to reviews. They also recognize that making extra efforts to encourage the positives can go a long way.

Monitor and Respond

Asking and receiving online reviews is only one part of your online reputation management strategy. Next, you must monitor these reviews and respond to both positives and negatives alike. A negative review can make your heart skip a beat but there is no harm in having a few of them. They help to prove the authenticity of your brand. Respond interactively and use the opportunity to show prospects watching that you care about their experience.

Get proactive and promote your company on several platforms, especially social media. When clients leave comments there, monitor and respond appropriately.

Avoid selling yourself too much as this puts prospects off. Try to come across as helping people make the best purchase decisions. Build a solid strategy to maintain your online reputation and achieve great progress with your company.

You can get professional assistance on this from a review company. Here at The Review Generator, we make your business goals possible.

Business Owner’s Guide to Responding to Negative Reviews

Negative reviews are something that comes with the business. No matter how hard you try, you can’t be completely rid of them. Some clients leave negative reviews because they have a bad experience; others may just be biased or chronic complainers. The problem is, your prospects won’t care why a customer leaves a negative review. They are only concerned with how it affects the credibility of your business.

It might come as a surprise to learn that negative reviews are a necessary evil.

A few negative reviews among positive ones convince your prospects of your authenticity. It is suspicious and strange to have all positive reviews with almost no negative ones.

Negative reviews help to provide insights into areas of your business in need of improvement.

Why responding to negative reviews is vital?

  • It helps you take back control and minimize the damage of the negative review.
  • Responding shows prospects that you are committed and professional.

How do you respond to negative reviews?

  • The truth is, nobody likes to see their business degraded, especially when you are not at fault. Some negative feedback can be downright annoying, infuriating, and hurtful. The first thing you need to do when it shows up on your business page is take a deep breath. Calm down and do more tactical thinking. Some business owners have thrown caution out the window with their raging response. In the end, your unprofessional response will affect your business more than the negative review itself.
  • Respond quickly and follow up with the customer. Start by contacting the customer and trying to resolve the problem or make corrections. If this is possible, and the customer is happy, politely ask them to edit the review after. If they are reluctant, let it go and proceed with a timely public response to the reviews.
  • Work towards the positives. Positive reviews can easily outweigh negative ones. An important way to minimize the impact of negative feedback is by getting more positive ones. Take your review game seriously. Apply compelling practices such as a satisfactory service, reminders through email to review the service, and much more. These can spur more clients towards leaving positive feedback.

The Response

Do not use an automatic response. Your clients or prospects want to know they are interacting with a human being and not automated systems. Keep your responses real, honest, and conversational.

  • Offer an Apology or Solution
    A good response can always begin with an apology. This makes it clear that you care about your clients’ demands and satisfaction. You can also assure them of exceptional services or a solution to the problem.
  • Keep Prospects in Mind
    The entire reason you must respond professionally to all reviews is that prospects read them. Always remember that you are not only addressing a former client’s dissatisfaction, but you are also convincing new ones they won’t have similar problems.

You can avoid the bulk of negative reviews with proper business practices, such as

  • Quick and efficient communication
  • Exceptional customer service
  • Sticking to business principles and promises
  • Create a platform for customer complaint or overall feedback.

Creating an Exceptional Customer Experience

A Satisfied Customer is the Best Business Strategy of all” – Michael LeBoeuf

The most prolific businesses offer exceptional customer experience to clients. They do this because they realize that customers will pay more for better customer experience than anything else. Let us explore this with some practical scenarios.

If you walked into coffee shop A and the employees treated you kindly and respectfully, then on further observation you noticed how efficient everything about the coffee shop was, and the coffee tasted great. It is certain you will pay with a smile on your face and maybe leave a tip.

Meanwhile, when you try out coffee shop B the next morning, you don’t get such welcoming treatment. The employee has a face plastered with a frown when asking what you want. When you can’t make a quick decision, the employee snaps or speaks rudely to you. When your order finally came, it tasted flat. You won’t be leaving a tip here.

Imagine passing by the next morning and you need coffee. Obviously, coffee shop A will be your first choice for what you need.

Here are the points we can identify from these scenarios:

  • You (the customer) had a great customer experience at coffee shop A. Hence, they have won your loyalty, trust, and cash.
  • You won’t be referring any friends or relatives to coffee shop B and you won’t tell them why you stopped using their service. In the best case, you would leave a negative review on Facebook to state your disappointment.

Creating an exceptional customer experience is vital for your business. The only problem is that 80% of business owners believe they are doing just that, yet only 8% of customers agree with them (Bain & Company Research).

Well, we can’t blame you because customer experience is a broad word and it can be daunting to discover where your business is lacking. Customers won’t tell you and those that leave negative reviews might not be 100% honest. So, how do you figure out the areas of your business in need of improving? It is by paying closer attention to what customers say, using proper tools. We have identified these tools below.

  1. Social Listening Tool
    There is a high chance a conversation on social media has something to do with your business. Not everyone would tag your business page in a conversation with friends about their experience there. You have to sift through all the talk on social media and find out what is being said about you. A social media listening tool helps you do this efficiently.
  2. Carry Out Surveys
    A customer survey makes it easy to hear from the horse’s mouth. The survey should ask relevant questions and provide rating options for your customer service. From the results, you can find those lacking areas of your business.
  3. Employee Feedback
    Your employees have direct contact with your customers. They also know the business closely. Gather regular feedback from them on customer service, what they think customers dislike, and how to make improvements.

Asking For Reviews on Facebook and Google

As a business owner who aims to be successful, there are several factors to put in place to achieve this goal. Trust is a big part of your success story, and it is the only reason anyone would invest time and money in your service or product.

Now, how do you get trust? It starts with having customer reviews or feedback. If you have been in the online market long enough, then you know that ‘reviews’ is a buzzword. There are two major reasons you need to take your review game seriously:

  1. Seeing your business reviews helps to reduce the perceived risk a prospect might have about working with you or your company. Reviews show that others have already taken the risk.
  2. Reviews favor the ‘crowd’ mentality of most prospects. More people want to buy from someone with a large number of reviews.

Google and Facebook are the most review-friendly platforms, as they allow you to ask and receive reviews from clients easily. Hence, every business owner should take advantage of them. To do this, you need to apply the right tips and in a few seconds, you will learn about them.

The first thing to note is that Google and Facebook are two different platforms. Google sits at the heart of online marketing and offers you the widest customer base. In fact, it is aptly described as the king of online search and business reviews!

Facebook is the world’s biggest social network. It has evolved from just a platform for connecting with friends to a platform where businesses are discovered. The rating and review system on Facebook is not the same as Google but serves its unique purpose.

Here are the practices to use:

  • Claim all listings and pages
    Google has a Google My Business Profile, where businesses can control their online reputation. If you are yet to claim this listing on Google, do it soon or create a new account.

    The same thing should be done with your Facebook business page. Claim both listings and work on improving visibility and credibility. Remember to always ensure consistency with the information provided on both platforms.

  • Learn to solicit for reviews
    More is always best with reviews. However, do you know that clients who had a bad experience are motivated to leave reviews more than those who were satisfied? Yes, so asking for reviews helps you strike a balance and prevent the negative from overruling the positive.
  • Use proper timing
    Asking a customer to leave a review is tough, but with proper timing, it can become beneficial. The ideal time to ask is right after a job/purchase is completed. During this time the purchase is still on their minds, and they probably haven’t left your page yet.
  • Make it easy
    The easier it is for customers to leave a review, the higher the chance they will do so. Create a link or system to make reviewing your business smooth, quick, and easy. You can send direct links through emails or leave a prompt on your business page.
  • Be honest about it.
    Avoid asking only specific clients for a review because you are certain it will be positive. Google and Facebook are meant to provide an accurate picture of your business. If they discover that your reviews are biased, you could lose credibility and your business reputation online.

The Impact of Reviews on Local SEO

Local SEO is the optimization of your business for relevant queries. It is when your business becomes recognized by search engines during a search that relates to your local area. For example, if a web user searches for ‘restaurants near me’ and he lives in Utah, the search engine will provide results that show top-ranking restaurants in that area.

You may wonder what this has to do with reviews, but research has shown that there are a lot of ways reviews come into play for local SEO. They help to ensure ranking and visibility and equally contribute to a client’s decision to buy from you.

Search engines like Google are constantly seeking consistency. They want to know if your business provides value and if it always satisfies consumers. There are several ways this can be determined and they include traffic, clicks, and more. Business owners often work to improve their rankings on Google by providing quality content or relying on SEO experts, but reviews have become one of the most important ways.
To benefit from the impact of reviews on local SEO, you must know how it works.

Review Diversity
Your reviews must come from different sources. Search engines recognize the diversity in reviews, such as when they are found on several review websites. Don’t streamline your reviews to just Google or Facebook. Make use of various platforms, especially those specific to your industry.

Review Regularity
For reviews to become relevant, they have to be regular and recent. If you have many reviews from the previous year, that is a great start. However, while this sort of regularity is sufficient for good ranking, it may not be convincing for clients. According to a survey, 85% of customers believe that reviews as old as three months ago are no longer relevant.

Quantity of reviews
There is no such thing as too many reviews or enough reviews. The more reviews a business has, the better, especially highly positive ones. It goes to show how impressed clients are with your service.

Quality of reviews
Four to five stars are quality reviews. They are what make your business look good and professional. If you rank with lower stars or poor quality reviews, it will not convince potential clients. Rather, they will move on to consider your competitors.

Understanding the impact of reviews on local SEO is vital, but the next step is to work on making it benefit your business. Start by developing a strategic way to ask for reviews. Add a customer review feed to your business page or website to encourage new customers to leave their reviews and to show that your business is reliable. Seeing recent quality reviews on your business online pages or website can go a long way to convert clients. Claiming your Google My Business profile is also essential. Finally, you must track all reviews regarding your business and respond appropriately. Manage your online reputation to ensure that search engines can recognize the value you bring.

Posted in SEO
get google reviews

How To Get More Reviews On Google

Reviews speak for themselves and your business. This is why they have become so important on Google.

In recent times, business ads and location are taking up a larger part of search pages. So when a web user makes a query, several businesses that offer services related to that query are shoved in their face. At that point, your business reviews are what improve visibility and encourage a potential client to make a purchase.

Statistics show that 40% of consumers for an opinion of a business by reading one to three reviews. Another 23% will visit the local address of the business after reading positive reviews.

The only problem here is that acquiring these reviews as a business owner on Google can be difficult. Read on to know how you can get them.

  1. Claim your listings
    First things first, claim all your listings on Google. Search for them using the proper tools and ensure you have control and a clear picture of what is going on with each listing.
  2. Learn to ask
    This is always easier said than done. We all know that asking customers for a review is no walk in the park. In fact, it can turn around to cause problems when the client you approached leaves a bad review. You can ask subtly by sending a professional message or leaving printouts on walls and tables in your physical shop.
  3. Show them how to do it
    Leaving a review on Google might not be so easy or direct for consumers. Hence, it is essential to educate them on how it is done. Give a clear explanation in your message or printouts. You can also create a page or video to show customers how it works.
  4. Simplify it
    If your clients think leaving a review will take them more than a few seconds, they will be less likely to go through with it. In your explanations, simplify the process as much as you can and strategize a way to make leaving reviews easier for clients.
  5. Respond to reviews
    26% of customers say it is important for businesses to respond to their reviews. The consistent response to both negative and positive reviews encourages other customers to leave their feedback. They become assured that someone will read it. Your response should be prompt, creative, and professional.
  6. Include it in your email campaign
    Many businesses send emails to their customers. Such messages can also be useful for getting Google reviews. Include a call to action (CTA) that directs readers to leave a review if they haven’t.

    You can equally create a specific Google review email campaign. Include links to the review page to make it easier and convenient.

  7. Follow Google review guidelines
    As much as you want those reviews to keep coming in, you should remember to obey the rules. Google review guidelines say business owners should not offer rewards for reviewing. It also says you should ask all clients equally, despite the worry that they may leave negative feedback.

If you need assistance in getting reviews on Google, feel free to reach out to KSH Marketing. We help our clients get actual customer reviews on many platforms. We succeed when our clients succeed!

Creative Responses to Positive Reviews

Reviews are unavoidable in business. You need them to grow and show potential clients you are trustworthy. Reviews are how clients speak to each other and they contribute to a new customer’s decision on whether or not to use your services.

There are several resources that speak on how to handle negative reviews in a business, but you can’t find many on how to respond to the positive ones. For most business owners responding to the negative reviews is vital because of the bad effects they can have on your business. This is fine. However, it is equally important to pay attention to your responses to positive reviews.

Avoiding generic responses to positive reviews on your business is important because it shows engagement and concern on your part. Here are some creative responses to help you be more impactful.

Mention the name of the employee.
If your business is one that allows individual services, you can spice up your response by mentioning the name of the employee who worked directly with the client. For example, you can respond with

“Thank you for your feedback. We are glad James provided a satisfactory service.”

Talk about the specific service provided to the client
Not only is this relevant for a creative response, but it is also a great way to advertise your services more. If you can mention what you did for the customer, others with similar needs may feel more comfortable coming to you. So, you can have a response like this:

“It was wonderful organizing your anniversary party. Thank you!”

Respond to the negatives within the positive review
Experience will show you that a five-star review doesn’t always guarantee positive comments. Some customers will say only a few kind words and finish with some opinions that seem negative.

“The service was wonderful but slow and this seemed a little unprofessional.”

This customer has left a five-star rating with some mildly damaging words about your service. The good news is that you can salvage the situation by addressing the con in the review rather than just saying “Thanks” or some other generic response.

“We are glad you enjoyed our services. We are also working on employing more staff and purchasing sophisticated equipment to make our service one of the fastest in the industry. We hope to see you again soon and do recommend us to your friends and family.”

Review them too!
Perception has a lot to do with how most business owners take reviews. Your response doesn’t always have to be directly aimed at further advertising. You can review the client too. Talk about their manners and ability to communicate clearly. For example:

“It was great working with Susan. She was communicative and clear about what she needed. She also provided the details required to offer her a thorough service.”

Mention an ongoing or future promotion
A response to a positive review is a good opportunity to bring up a future promotion or an ongoing one. You can thank the customer and remind them to come back for the special discount or sale.

The team at The Review Generator can help with advice on how to respond to your reviews. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out!

Improving Customer Experience Will Drive Revenue

Each one of us is a customer to other services we do not offer. So, with that being said, can you remember the last time you were pleased with your interaction with a company? Did this make you want to buy more and tell others? How about when you had a bad experience with a company?

If anything, customers tend to remember when they had either a good or a bad experience with a business. When customers have an ‘okay’ experience, they tend to forget all about that. However, only distinctly good and bad experiences stick in their mind. There are several reasons why it is important to improve your customer experience and various ways to do it. But to help you understand better, we will define the term and give clear examples of customer experience.

What is Customer Experience?

Quite simply, customer experience is the impression you leave with a customer and it results in what they think of your business, service, or product. Customer experience which is often known in the business industry as CX is consistent. It matters across all stages of your business and the touchpoints between your brand and a consumer.

Examples of Customer Experience

Imagine a client walked into your local store to purchase a cup of coffee. The customer interacts with staff, likes the setup of your store, buys her coffee and leaves smiling. The client obviously had a good customer experience and will probably stop by tomorrow.

Now, picture another scenario where a customer walks in and is put off by one of the employees. It could be the employee was too slow, rude, or incompetent. This upsets the customer who storms out angrily and heads for another store. In some cases, the customer might still make a purchase because they need the item, but it is clear they had a bad experience and will not be coming back.

The Implication and Solution

If a customer had a good experience they become loyal and tell others about you. However, if a customer had a bad experience, they would never return. It is also important to know displeased customers tell more people about their bad experience than pleased customers. You can see that by giving one customer less satisfaction, you have created a hole in your pocket. The more unsatisfied clients you have, the bigger the hole gets.

To avoid losing revenue, it is necessary to improve customer experience. You can start by measuring the current state of CX in your business. Perform surveys to ask clients what they like, dislike, and their satisfaction rate. As soon as you can figure out the areas your business is lacking, you can fix it.

Determine your customer’s journey map with your business. Improve the key touchpoints to improve customer experience. This includes areas such as customer inquiries, new communication channels, faster service, digital solutions, competitive prices, higher quality, perks, and much more.

Encourage customers to give feedback, so you can confirm the effectiveness of your strategies.

The Review Generator is here to help businesses grow their online reviews. Through our program, our clients have seen an increase in reviews on Yelp, Google, and Facebook. Learn more by contacting us via our website, email, or by calling (818) 588-0097.