Do you remember the Yellow pages? Before the internet was the big thing, Yellow pages, ruled the world when it came to search. As an Insurance Agent / business owner in the 90s and early 2000s, I had to pay a huge ransom to have a 1 page ad that started in the section of Insurance. It was a great way to get in front of more eyeballs. In 2021, there are countless companies offering SEO optimization (we are one of them), making sure your website is mobile friendly, providing enough back-links to your page, etc.
Because Rainier Arms has mainly been an online reseller, we didn't pay much attention to Google Reviews. As a result, our thousands of happy customers referred friends and family to shop with us but we didn't get many reviews as we never asked for them. The reviews we would get is when a customer who didn't get the service they deserved vented out online. We certainly don't blame customers for venting when they have a negative experience but because we weren't collecting positive customer experiences, our overall rating was horrible. In over 15 years, we had less than 200 Google reviews with a very poor rating of 4.3 Stars and we knew we had to do something to address this inaccurate sentiment about our business.
We knew we wanted to automate the system so we wouldn't need to create additional work for our staff which would lead to additional cost & potential mistakes. As well as building a system that was fluid and an extension of our business. After months of tweaking, we landed on a solution that has been paying huge dividends.
Our plan was simple. Let's ask every customer for feedback. If they had a positive experience, we would ask them to leave a review. If they had a poor experience, we asked them to send us an email so we could promptly address their issues. 2 amazing outcomes came from asking for negative feedback. 1, even if they didn't plan to leave a negative review, they weren't happy. Chances of being a repeat customer was greatly diminished as well as kissing referrals goodbye. Because we were able to find out issues, we were able to quickly resolve issues to turn a bad experience to a positive one. 2, it revealed possible cracks in our business policies so we could address them as they came up. It allowed our business to improve and over deliver on our customer's expectations.
What were your results?
In the first 6 months, we've collected nearly 1000 new reviews! Of course, nearly all of them were extremely positive 5 stars. During the past 6 months, we've been able to improve our business procedures based on valuable feedback and leap forward with our overall review rating of 4.8 Stars with close to 1200 reviews at the writing of this post.
Needless to say, the positive reviews have not only been a more accurate view of our business but it's helped tremendously with google rankings as well. When ever you have positive interaction with your customers, Google notices and pushes you closer to the top of the search results.
The cost is around $300-400 per month depending on the shopping cart software you run for your website. What does it cost you for not automating a google review system?
For more info, contact us at [email protected] or use the Contact link on top of the page.