• http://twylah.com/experienceads Evan W.

    REALLY nice article!

  • http://www.localseoguide.com Andrew Shotland

    Thanks Evan. I have added some extra tips that did not make it into the article here http://www.localseoguide.com/10-tips-to-get-more-customer-reviews-sel/

  • http://nicoo.fr Nicolas Machard

    Hi, Great post, thanks,
    just one thing, google is using reviews from major Review actors like Yelp, in order to display your sites’ ratings. So collecting reviews on your own is ok for CRM, SEO, but not enough for having stars rati,gs display on Google search pages… Any insights or feedback re. my remark ?
    Thanks,
    NIcolas

  • http://www.localseoguide.com Andrew Shotland

    Nicholas,

    It’s definitely a good idea to get reviews on sites where your potential customers are, regardless of how they influence Google’s display.

  • http://www.loudervoice.com/ conoro

    Great piece Andrew, it’s exactly what we tell our customers in LouderVoice. One quick note: Whilst we are based in Ireland we actually serve customers in the US, Canada, UK and Ireland. We have also just launched Spanish and Russian language solutions. The first Spanish and Mexican customer sites are launching shortly. French localisation is coming next week too.

    Regarding the question from Nicolas, star ratings appear in Google Search [a] if your reviews are marked up with Rich Snippets, [b] you have informed Google of this and [c] if Google has approved you. That last bit can take many months as it appears to be a manual approval. We have a solution which provides Rich-Snippets reviews for our clients,

  • KatMatfield

    Really good article: I especially agree about avoiding incentives. Here at Reevoo (European-based reviews & social commerce company) we’ve collected a few million reviews in the past 5 years just by asking nicely.

    I think timing the review request is a bit more complex than simply going for ASAP, though. It really varies depending on what your business is. If you’re selling products that the consumer will take home and use, we’ve found its best to wait 4-6 weeks so the reviews you get are full of detail. But for an experience like a holiday or a haircut, less than a week works better. Balance is everything: ask too late and response rates drop off a cliff; ask too early and the resulting reviews will just say “good so far” or similar.

    Another point is to make sure the reviews you have on your own site actually drive traffic. A lot of the review solutions out there use technologies that inadvertantly hide reviews from search engines, so deliver no SEO benefit. This is something we’ve worked hard to avoid, and I’ve written a quick blogpost on how to work out if search engines can see your reviews (for the SEO newbies!): http://b2b.reevoo.com/blog/2011/06/can-search-engines-see-your-social-commerce-content

  • Augustin

    Really good stuff, Andrew. I’d add that sometimes reviews will address customer service, especially if something was wrong with the product. That’s worth keeping in mind–that negative product reviews can still have a positive or neutral effect, and that companies might want to integrate customer service opinions into their strategies if they aren’t already.

  • http://www.chatmeter.com C.M.

    Andrew, this is a great article. Reviews are becoming more popular because they give consumers a voice that other people will listen to. This is powerful for companies because if they pay attention to their online reputation, they could stay a head in their industry. How ever if they do not listen to these reviews, the negative ones could haunt them.