In this era of the internet, positive online reviews are crucial for the prosperity and growth of your business. To stay ahead of your competitors, you should be actively engaged in improving and protecting the reputation of your business online. Here are some steps to take to help you accomplish this.

Highlight Your Business

Most review sites allow you to create an official profile of your business. This serves as an introduction before potential customers engage with reviews. The profile should include photographs, contact information, hours of operation, directions to your physical location, and a link to your website. A completed business page makes customers more amenable to leaving favorable online reviews.

Follow Guidelines

Each review site has policies and guidelines that you are expected to follow. Study these guidelines and adhere to them as closely as possible. If you deviate from them you run the risk of having your profile and reviews removed from the site.

Request Reviews

Even if customers are completely satisfied, they usually don’t think of posting reviews on their own. It’s more often disgruntled clients that take the time to write something. To correct this imbalance, remind happy customers to post reviews after their transactions. This reminder can be at the bottom of receipts or included in follow-up emails shortly after purchases.

Facilitate Follow-Through

At your website, on social media accounts, or in online stores, make it easy for customers to offer reviews by including links to review sites. Offer tips about things to include in their reviews such as what they most enjoy about your products or services, how they find your products or services to be helpful, and whether they would recommend your business to others.

Monitor and Respond

It is imperative that you monitor the online reviews that you receive across all relevant review sites. Software tools are available to help you with this. By tracking your reviews, you’ll be able to assess where you are doing well and where you need to improve your performance. Although you should politely respond to all the reviews you receive, you should focus on negative reviews first. Always respond in a sympathetic and helpful manner to these.