Small businesses need to work extra hard to make their company succeed, and one of the best ways to do this is to know your customer base and what they like and don’t like. As a small business, utilizing online review sites can be a great asset to your company. The following are five reasons a small business should make use of the many online review sites out there today.
1. You can learn what your customers like about your business.
Customers use online review sites to leave positive feedback about a business, so if you monitor the review sites, you can learn what your company is doing right and what your customers like. This way, you know what’s working for your business so you can continue to do just that and keep your customers happy and returning back for more.
2. You can learn what your customers don’t like about your business.
Along with leaving positive reviews, customers also use online review sites to leave negative feedback about your business. By monitoring what’s being said about your business, you can learn what your customers don’t like about your company. Maybe they don’t like a certain product, or maybe you’ve noticed multiple complaints about a certain employee. You can use the information you find on these sites to make the necessary changes to keep your customers happy.
Once you’ve made the necessary changes, you need to be sure you reach back out to the customers that left the negative reviews and let them know you made changes. Then, ask them to return and check out the changes, and hopefully you’ll get them to write a positive review this time.
3. You can learn more about your customers.
In order to write a review, people have to create profiles on the online review sites. When a customer leaves a review about your business, check out their profile to learn more about them. This can help you learn exactly who is visiting your establishment and buying your products or services. You can then use this information to ensure you’re targeting the right audience. For example, paying attention to your customers on the review sites could help you learn if your audience is mostly male or female, old or young and even what ethnicity they are.
4. You can monitor what your competition is up to.
Online review sites are open to the public, which means that you can check out he information your competitors are placing online. Use review sites to see if your competitors are holding certain events or offering certain sales, and use that information to create a strong marketing tactic against it that helps keep your customers coming to you. The more you stay ahead of the competition, the more you’ll keep your customers loyal.
5. You can do all this for free.
Small businesses don’t have a large budget, and since online review sites are free to join, you can learn about your target audience, your competition, and your customers’ preferences all for free. Now that certainly fits into every small business’ budget.
Jason Ellis is an onlline reputation management consultant and blogger who focuses negative online reviews, learning from them and creating positive countermeasures.