Reviews of products and services by other customers have an enormous influence on the consumption decisions of consumers. More and more people are using online reviews and previous customer experiences as a source of information before making a purchase decision. According to a study by BrightLocal, 87% of customers read online reviews before deciding to choose a company’s product in 2020.
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Prominent Benefits of Consumer Ratings to SMEs
Since all the businesses have started to focus on gaining online visibility, customer ratings play a great role in marketing their products and services. Some of the most prominent benefits include:
Reviews provide a direction to customers who are looking for a service or a product
Online reviews are usually relevant to the search engine and create visibility for companies
Customer ratings are more credible than advertising because people trust the judgment of others
Companies receive important feedback from customers that they can use to improve their products or services
The Top Business Review Sites
With average monthly traffic of 158.03 million, just from the United States, the site has a specific platform for businesses, named Google My Business, to create their profile and gain ranking from consumers.
Anyone with a Google account can look up the company on the search engine.
Especially for companies who take part in e-commerce activities, Amazon is a great platform to gain visibility.
With an average monthly US traffic of 85.44 million, the site provides retailers with a platform to sell their products to customers and gain reviews in order to improve their visibility.
Facebook is one of the most popular social networking platform, which lets businesses create a profile. These pages are then followed by users, where the customers can leave reviews for these businesses.
Trustpilot is a global community where customers can post their reviews about a business.
The best feature of this site is businesses can integrate those reviews on their websites. It not only enhances the visibility of the company, but also increases the trust of the website visitor.
Integration of Customer Reviews into the Management Aspect of Businesses
Consumer reviews help managers in a company to have a strategic view of their product or service. It also helps businesses in improving their department-related strategies, for example, the ones designed for customer service, logistics, sales, and marketing.
Managements of companies can use consumer reviews to their advantage in a few ways. Some of them are:
Improvement in Products or Services
Listening to customers’ feedback can help a business in designing its products according to the needs and expectations of consumers. More than meeting a need, in fact, it is important to exceed customer expectations. To do this, invest in tools that help your customers in providing you with feedback. Take advantage of online reviews to make your product even more suitable and competitive.
Increases Customer Satisfaction and Loyalty
Companies that offer these communication channels bond with customers and show how vital they are to the development of the brand. The result is a much closer relationship between customers and companies. Consequently, it increases customer satisfaction and loyalty. Customers, who are satisfied only with your product but also with your service and interaction, are very likely to help you increase your brand awareness by bringing other customers to your company.
Improves Customer Experience
Consumer experience is a term that has become the center of attention in the business industry. It involves much more than just selling a product or service. It concerns everything that relates to your brand, which may include products’ performance and service capacity.
The more positive your customers’ experience is, the more satisfied they will be with your company. This improves the chances of loyalty and increases the average rating of the company on the internet. Listening to the opinions and understanding of the consumers’ perceptions about your business helps managers understand the bottlenecks that are preventing these people from having a positive experience with your brand.
Assists Decision Making
Managing a company correctly involves, above all, knowing how to make decisions. However, this is not always a simple task. By taking help from customers’ reviews, managers have more data at hand to understand what needs to be modified in the internal processes to make the brand more attractive to consumers. These factors contribute to the formation of strategic decisions and the alignment of business goals with the expectations and desires of consumers.
Solves internal communication problems
Internal communication is of paramount importance – and when it is not done properly, external difficulties arise, which include legal issues and defamation of the brand. Customer reviews help managers in identifying communication failures that are leading to dissatisfaction among consumers.
Methods to Gain Positive Reviews From Customers
A business should not assume that their customers would provide them with ratings and reviews on their own. They must use different methods to persuade customers to do so. One of the most convenient methods is to ask existing customers for feedback in the form of reviews on popular platforms. The positive side of this method is that it will make buyers feel valued, which means that the rating will usually be high.
To get more reviews, you should make the rating and review process as simple as possible for your customers. Remember that you should not be afraid of negative reviews, because these can help your company in improving those aspects of your business.
as all businesses are turning to the digital world, customer reviews help companies, especially SMEs, in marketing their product and service to their target audience. Moreover, these reviews help managers in identifying the issues in their operations and improve their system to enhance customers’ experience. Most of the users rely on reviews on online platform before making the purchase decision from a company or a store.