Did you know that your Google business reviews have a huge influence on your business' local SEO? As entrepreneurs, we know how important it is to have a good reputation.

Let's take a look at an example. After inserting a quick Google search for “Ottawa Coffee”, I found the business that ranked the best coffee due to the number of reviews and keywords used.

You can see that the highlighted words showcase the relevant keywords that apply to my search of "Ottawa Coffee". Do you know how many reviews people read before making up their mind on a business? According to a survey by Bright Local, consumers will read ten reviews before they can trust a business. In my example, you can see that the top three coffee places in Ottawa have hundreds of reviews. Reviews are incredibly valuable, 91% of 18-34 year olds trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.

By simply increasing the number of Google reviews with your specified keywords, you can see an increase in visibility of your website. Encourage your clients to leave Google reviews and it reflects your credibility in the online world. This cheap (no cost!!) approach can quickly bring your ranking up since Google uses keywords in reviews to rank the businesses in order.

Wondering HOW you can increase your Google reviews?

Ask your clients and customers for their feedback and attach a link to your Google reviews page. Don’t be scared to approach them: Podium’s study shows that 77% are likely to leave a review if they are asked. In addition, you can post on your social media accounts to ask for Google reviews. Be respectful when you are asking for reviews and don't make it obligatory as people don't want to be pressured into doing a favour. Make sure to train your staff and explain how to strategically ask customers to leave reviews.

Good news! Google recently made this process of getting a link to your Google review page much easier. Now from your Google My Business dashboard, you can enable a custom short name URL for your business reviews. This makes it really easy to share this URL with clients. You can include this link on multiple platforms like email signatures, social media, and your website.

You can also send personalized messages to your partners, clients, friends, etc. to ask for google reviews. Ask them to include the keywords specific to your business. For example, for WP Expert it would be “Wordpress Help Ottawa” and "Wordpress Support Ottawa".

The more Google reviews, the better local SEO!

By increasing your amount of Google reviews it can help your local SEO.

It affects your reputation because reviews add value to your product/service to customers who are searching something to fulfill their needs successfully. In a study done by Podium, it showed that 93% of consumers say that reviews have a high impact on their consumer engagement with B2B and B2C businesses.

Make sure your Google alerts are on and you will receive a notification when you get a review. Begin your response with the reviewers name, and don't wait too long to reply. Be proactive and manage your business mentions to maintain your reputation.

Don’t leave the bad reviews alone! 

Remember to respond to your reviews: negative or positive. Leaving a review alone doesn’t help your business reputation. If it is a bad review, take time to breath so you don’t let your emotions effect your response. Try to look at them as an opportunity to learn. Thank the respondent for putting in time to review your business and offer them to contact you privately so you can discuss how to improve their experience with your business. Keep it short and simple in your professional response. Once you have been in contact with them and have made the customer happy, kindly ask them to edit their review. Your responses to the reviews are important as it encourages more people to leave a review as they know their review is important and they are valuable to the business.

Lost and need guidance? Google has a help page and can provide you with suggestions on how to improve your local ranking! Check the article out "Improve your local ranking on Google".

As you can see Google loves to read your reviews and will use them as a ranking factor. It’s a worthwhile task to try to get reviews to improve your local SEO. Thanks for reading our article! We hope you were able to learn how Google reviews carry a lot of weight when it comes to SEO. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to .

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