“A negative review on TripAdvisor means €10,000 in losses for Pierre & Vacances.” This statement from Rodolphe Roux, Group Marketing Director, is enough to send shivers down your spine. It also accurately illustrates the importance of what customers are saying and how that affects an online reputation. This is why marketing departments should be taking matters into their own hands.
The significance of an online reputation
Customer feedback is all over the Internet: on Google, in forums, on comparison websites, etc. And the outcome? It is impossible to search for a product or brand without being influenced by reviews from others. According to a recent study, 84% of consumers stated that they rely mostly on recommendations from others when selecting a product or service. 68% have admitted that they trust reviews posted online by internet users, even if they don’t know them.
It is now common knowledge that the consumer-brand relationship is affected more by customer reviews than by brand advertising. Customer feedback plays a significant role when paying for a product or service: almost 9 out of 10 consumers check online reviews before purchasing. Marketing directors, the time is nigh to be concerned about your online reputation!
How to deal with customer feedback
79% of people who research online before purchasing have previously given an online review. Anyone can share feedback and there can be a very high number of reviews. Left at the hands of Internet users, a brand’s online reputation can quickly begin to suffer. So how can you manage this steady feedback in a way that will safeguard your online reputation?
It is very much in the interest of a company to handle reviews in a proactive manner, taking control of what customers are saying. Overseeing customer reviews is without doubt a very effective marketing strategy. Not only that, customers are usually positive when solicited! Know that, on average, 83% of customers solicited after a purchase give positive feedback.
So, marketing managers, it is up to you! Take the initiative and start assessing your customers! This will drastically change the influx of reviews. Without any effort on your part, only 1% of customers will give spontaneous feedback. Say for example, you start reaching out after purchases are made, you could achieve a feedback rate of almost 25%. Collecting customer feedback, either spontaneous or solicited, means you will have more accurate insight into satisfaction levels.
Online reputations are more of a benefit than a threat
By using this satisfaction indicator wisely, you can make your online reputation a legitimate ROI lever for your brand. Your satisfaction score can become a “hook,” central to your acquisition strategy.
A perfect example is that of Save, a French electronic device repair company and Critizr client since March 2016. Victim of a few detractors who shared their views online, Save has implemented customer feedback measures which facilitate an impressive amount of feedback: over 17,000 reviews in the first month!
These reviews, positive for the vast majority, have effectively outweighed the few negative ones left online. Save displays their customer reviews in strategic parts of their website such as the footer, product descriptions and basket. These reviews are certified by Critizr and provide reassurance for undecided visitors. Likewise, due to reviews, the website goes up in the search algorithm’s ranks. Without a doubt, keywords in customer reviews are a very effective SEO booster.
Another benefit of an online reputation comes with the world’s most popular search engine, Google. In 2009, the Internet giant introduced rich snippets. These extracts are displayed as yellow stars beneath your search results. Their purpose is to show Internet users the relevance of a web page.
Even if it doesn’t seem so, these stars are guarantees of your online reputation and can strongly influence traffic on your website and in your stores. Google stars displayed under Carrefour’s web pages helped increase click rates by 24%. Your online reputation, when presented as a satisfaction score, inspires confidence in visitors. It is a great opportunity to boost your visibility!
An online reputation is a major opportunity for businesses. It is the new marketing battlefield. It plays a key role in the customer’s purchasing process and shouldn’t be left at the hands of Internet users by any means. Customer feedback will safeguard your online reputation, so start collecting it now!