By now, it’s common knowledge that online reviews are an important part of your business reputation and your ability to impress software buyers. After all, in today’s technology-driven world, 92% of consumers now read online reviews and 84% trust them as much as personal recommendations. But did you know that reviews also actively impact your revenue potential?
Let’s take a closer look at the five ways reviews work beyond just reputation building to boost your business — and how these benefits can help you to stand out online in a competitive industry!
1. Reviews Catch the Eye of Buyers
The software search can seem daunting, and many buyers turn to reviews early in the research process to narrow their list of potential solutions. One of the biggest mistakes that software companies make is missing the opportunity to get on buyers’ short lists — and therefore missing out on the sale — simply because they don’t have strong reviews.
Consider this: if you were browsing through a directory of products, would you be more enticed to learn more about a company with a 100 reviews and a 4 star rating, or a company with only a handful of perfect 5 star, but aging reviews? Chances are the product with more reviews will get your click. I know it would get mine!
Buyers are looking for four attributes in software reviews: quality, quantity, consistency and recency. It may seem daunting to apply these principles to all of your reviews, but it doesn’t have to be. As you get started, set a goal to generate at least one new review per month, which will help build your review quantity and keep your reviews recent (if you can do more, that’s even better!). To learn more about these four key attributes and easy strategies to get reviews, check out our recent webinar.
2. Reviews Build Trust
74% of consumers say positive reviews make them trust a business more, and generally reviews are considered more trustworthy than traditional sales efforts. This trend may be disheartening to your scrappy sales team, so it’s important to leverage your reviews to help deliver your account managers more sales-ready leads.
You can use traditional marketing tactics to build trust by proudly showcase your reviews on your sales collateral and business website. Add the Capterra reviews badge to your site, consider showcasing favorite reviews on a testimonials page, and add call-to-actions for prospects to read your Capterra reviews in email signatures, printed materials, business cards and more. If you make your reviews prevalent, trust will naturally be earned. Plus, the sales process will become easier for your team since the leads will already be primed to believe the positive impact your software can make for their business — all based on the experiences shared by other users.
3. Reviews Impact Your SEO
It’s important to know that reviews don’t only impact people, they also impact search engines and online algorithms! Ranking factors indicate that there is an increasing focus on unique content such as reviews — and currently reviews specifically account for 8.4% of Google’s local search ranking factors.
Beyond creating fresh, user-generated content that search engines love, reviews also boost long-tail keyword traffic. As your clients leave reviews, they will be using language similar to the content your target audience will search for, therefore, you’ll get more direct keyword traffic to your profile pages and websites from your clients!
Finally, reviews can help build authority and generate social proof. It’s best to add reviews to your website to add rich content and inbound-links that will help generate more site traffic and improve your rankings. As mentioned earlier, be sure to add your coded Capterra Reviews badge to your website, which links to your Capterra profile page. This will also naturally encourage your clients to leave more reviews, without any extra work on your part.
4. Reviews Create Connections
Millennials in particular pay close attention to reviews, and are the most likely group of professionals to leave them. Beyond that, they highly value customer service, and are the most engaged age group with user-generated content. Why does this matter? These individuals make up the largest population in the United States at a whopping 75 million people, and frequently play a pivotal role in the B2B software research and buying process.
What’s the secret to impress this group? Respond to every review. This not only shows your customers — and those reading your reviews — that you value feedback, but it also is an opportunity to humanize your business.
A majority of the time, reviews share generally positive experiences about your software, but sometimes they can present criticism. We know it’s tempting to only acknowledge to great reviews, or quickly defend yourself to the negative, but it’s important to be consistent and show that you value all feedback.
When responding to any review, you absolutely must remain professional and polite. Work to find the good in every review, acknowledge it first, then try to offer a solution for the negative — such as how you can connect with them offline or by taking accountability for a poor customer service experience. Who knows, you may even be able to win them over (and retain a client that would have otherwise churned)!
Most importantly, all readers of your reviews will be impressed that you took the time to acknowledge each review which shows you value your clients. At the end of the day, no business is perfect and showing great customer service makes a bigger impression than a few bad reviews.
5. Reviews Allow You To “Humblebrag”
Finally, one of the best things about reviews are that they are an easy way to let your current customers do the selling for you. Think of them as free advertising from real clients! In fact, we’ve found that software vendors with reviews on Capterra get 22% more traffic and 79% more leads than those without reviews.
Not sure how to humblebrag? Simply show off your recent reviews by proactively sharing them with others. For example, the next time you get a five-star review, consider tagging your user to thank them for their feedback while linking to your reviews page on social media. This expands the reach of your best reviews in a natural way.
Now it’s time to get started requesting reviews from your clients and tracking the positive impact they make to your bottom line! Get creative ideas on how to collect reviews from this post, and don’t forget to bookmark your custom reviews form in your vendor portal to share with customers at any time.
We’re here to help if you have any questions about how to get more reviews for your business!