The #1 Thing Making Or Breaking Your Local Business Without You Knowing

There’s one simple thing that EVERY local business has that’s affecting their online presence for better or for worse. Find out what it is below

Breakthrough Digital

By Bradley Roth

      As a local business owner, what do you think of when someone asks you about your online presence? My guess is the first 2 things you think about are your website and your Facebook page. Then maybe your Instagram, Twitter, or YouTube page if you have any of them. While there’s plenty to talk about in regards to optimizing your website and other social media channels, we’ll leave that for another time. 
 
    That’s because it doesn’t matter how great your website and social media is if people aren’t getting to them. In fact, there’s one main thing standing in the way that determine if people will visit them or not, almost like a gatekeeper. Your website and social media platforms that show people how great your business is on the other side of that gate. In order to understand this better let’s start with a quick story
 
    Let’s imagine its Friday afternoon, the workweek is about to end and you’re looking forward to the weekend. And, on this particular weekend, you just happened to get invited to about 5 different parties at the same time on Saturday (because you’re so popular). You don’t have a preference just yet because you have multiple friends attending each one (you’re super popular, remember?). It just so happens every party you got invited to has a Facebook Event page. 
 
    You look at all 5 Facebook event pages and compare them – 2 of them have less than 10 confirmed guests, so you think “less than 10 people what kind of party is that? sounds lame” – 2 of them have between 15-30 people confirmed. You think “ok not bad, that could be fun” – and then the last one has 50+ confirmed guests so you say “wow that sounds awesome everyone is going so it must be the place to be” so you choose that one. 
 
    So you go to that party and have a ok time, but unbeknownst to you one of the other parties turned out to be an amazing time! Party of the year, everyone had a blast, etc.  And because you decided based solely on what other people were doing, you missed out on something better. 
 
    Now how does this relate to your business? It’s because you might be throwing the best party(running the best business), but if someone sees that everyone else is going to the other party(business), then they aren’t going to check you out. Makes sense right? Now how does that relate to your online presence?

” you might be throwing the best party(running the best business), but if someone sees that everyone else is going to the other party(business), then they aren’t going to check you out.


    Well obviously referrals and word of mouth are important and people can find out about your business that way. However, the majority of people all start out the decision/narrowing process the same way whether they are deciding where to eat, what used car dealership to go to, where to get their hair done, etc – And that’s with a Google search. 
 

    Now the first thing that typically pops up in a local Google search is a maps view of businesses related to your search. It shows the location and then has the name of the place and right under it, that business’s GOOGLE REVIEWS. The very first thing that people see and use to subconsciously form an impression about a business is the google reviews. (This is like seeing how many people want to go to a party).  They subconsciously do this based on not just the overall rating, but especially on the amount of reviews aka what everyone else is saying. For example, if you have a business with a 4.5 rating on 5 reviews and another with a 4.1 on 25 reviews, which one has a stronger rating? I would say the one with 25 reviews. Even though the overall rating is slightly lower, it has a larger sample size and therefore more social proof. 

   So in summary, Google Reviews are the aforementioned gatekeeper – if they’re solid people will check out your website and social media – and if not, they’re going to your competitor’s site. The best, easiest, cheapest, and quickest way to separate yourself from your local competition is simply to have more quality google reviews. 

” The best, easiest, cheapest, and quickest way to separate yourself from your local competition is simply to have more quality google reviews.”

    So what are the repercussions of not having great Google reviews? How many customers have you lost because someone else had better reviews? It’s hard to say – it’s one of the very few things online that you can’t track the metrics of. Chances are its more than you want to think about. Don’t lose out on more revenue due to something that can so easily be improved.

Now how do you do this? Simple, just reach out to as many of your loyal customers/clients as you feel comfortable with and ask them to write you an honest review. Tell them how much it would really help your business serve more people and most of them will be happy to take 5 minutes to write one.
 
    To take this one step further, you should ask them to copy and paste that review on the next 2 biggest and most important review sites, Facebook and Yelp, which are also very important. (Google is still the king of reviews and the most important.) You may also want to think about what industry-specific sites have reviews and get them on there as well. Most industry specific sites are very sparse on reviews so it can be very easy for you to stand out even with just a few solid testimonials. 
 
    Keep in mind that the amount of reviews needed to stand out can vary greatly between industries. Restaurants, for example, tend to have a lot of reviews because lots of people pass through. In other industries that are higher-ticket, such as chiropractors, attorneys, etc., many times you can become the go-to by any “Google searcher” simply by having 5-10 reviews. This will also vary depending on how populated your area is and other factors, but you get the idea. 

 

    There’s also ways to sends links that will take people right to your company’s review page to make it easy. If you have questions about how to do this. Feel free to message me at bradley@breakthroughdigital.net or on Breakthrough Digital’s Facebook Page 

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