Have you heard the term "Google is now your home page"? Well, for businesses with a physical location or a store such as restaurants, retail and entertainment your Google Map Business listing has become your home page. Customers more and more use the platform to discover local businesses to decide what and where to buy food, specific product or service.
Aside from proximity, the first thing that customers will look at is your star rating. According to MOZ, when consumers judge a business, the star rating is the number one factor, followed by volume of online reviews. Not only that, your star rating is only as good as your next competitor. You might be proud of your 4.2 average star rating but if you only have 150 reviews and your competitor has 500, guess who's going to get that click.
Customers Judge a Business by their Star Rating First
So how do I beat the competition and rank higher on Google Search results and Google Maps? Before we answer that question, it is imperative that you make sure that all of your Google Map business listing are complete and accurate. You do that by claiming and verifying your GMB listing and updating the information such as business category, description, opening hours, phone number, website link and most importantly your address.
Ask Customers to Leave a Review at the Right Time
Now that you have a complete and accurate Google Map Business listing, getting more five star reviews is all about using the right tool at the right time. For example, most businesses simply ask their customers to leave them a review as they are walking out the door hoping that they will. But you need to make it easy for them to do so and on the review platform of their choice. Having a tool that presents the customer with the ability to share their feedback online is a great way to do that.
However, you need to present this star review generation page at the right time. The is usually right after they completed an experience with you or purchase something from your store. If you wait too long the customer will not even remember you and your conversation rate will be low. For example, when a customers orders food from your site or through a delivery app, make sure to include a QR code in the packaging that directs them to leave a star review. If you have collected their email address or mobile number, send them an email or an SMS the next day.
More Positive Reviews Will Improve a Business's Local Ranking
The trick is to systemize the process and make it seamless for the customer to leave a 5 star review. You need amplify the organic amount that you are getting reviews on a daily basis and not do an online review request campaign once in a while. The growth in the number of positive reviews should be growing steadily and not have those spikes. At the end of the day, having a high average star rating along with a high count of online reviews will get your ranked higher on Google Search results. This in turn will get you more clicks to your Google Map Business listings and if your digital presence is complete and accurate then you will also get more people to click, call, order or get direction to your store.