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Local Marketing Blog
Local Marketing Blog

3 Reasons Google Reviews are Tough to Get

Do you feel like it is hard to get Google reviews?  You are not alone.  Hundreds of thousands of local businesses would like to get more Google reviews but find it hard to do so.

Here are 3 reasons why Google reviews are tough to get:

Privacy

With Google’s recent change to Google+Local, one of the new review policies that was rolled out is a requirement for reviewers to disclose their first and last names publicly.  In addition, reviewers must create a Google+ personal profile prior to writing a review.  The review then links back to their personal Google+ profile.

We have talked to a lot of potential reviewers who want anonymity.  Disclosing their first and last name scares some people away from writing a review.

Aggressive Filter

A couple of months ago, Google began using an aggressive new review filter in an attempt to reduce the amount of fake reviews that were showing up.  The downside of this new filter is that it is also eliminating lots of valid reviews.  A quick look in the Google Groups finds hundreds of complaints on multiple threads.

Not How Customers Want to Communicate

By and large, your customer wants to communicate with you via email, on the phone or on Facebook…not on Google+.

 What to do?

Ask for reviews.  Ask for reviews.  Ask for reviews.  At some level, you can win by simply treating the problem as a numbers game.

Want a more elegant solution?  Use Customer Lobby and enable our Smart Invite function!

 

Comments

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  1. It’s been clear for some time that Google is more concerned about it’s domination than it’s users, evidenced by their requirement that the person wanting to leave a review must join Google+. Many of my customers refuse to play this game.

    1. @Fred
      I don’t understand Google’s rationale for many decisions they have made recently. Its hard to blame a customer that says “I don’t want to join another social network. I have Facebook…that’s enough.”

      The result for those of us that want Google reviews is that we simply need to keep asking a larger and larger group of our customers. Keep using our Smart Invite functionality and they will build slowly.

  2. Demographics also have a lot to do with this. Many of our regular customers that have been with us for over 20 years are 50 and older, so the Internet is “new” to many of them and a bit intimidating. Google has lots and lots of young geeks who don’t know or even remember a world without the Internet, so much of their planning and programing excludes a large segment of the population. Our company has done a pretty good job of coaxing some of our clients to get on the Internet and leave a review but when Google asks them to sign-up for Google+, they exit. Their experience leaving a review on Customer Lobby is much better and our approx 90 reviews are a testimony to the success of Customer Lobby. Thank you for being user friendly!

  3. Facebook also requires a person provide their name, doesn’t it? So the issue here not necessarily that people don’t want to use Google+ or that Google is all about domination (although it might be), the issue is that people want distance when the give feedback. Email actually feels fairly impersonal because the communication only goes between 2 people…it is likely to be published publicly. Same with a phone call. And Facebook has MUCH higher usage than Google+ so Facebook shows up as being used by at least the younger crowd.

    This whole conversation is about public reviews so that customers can assess a company. I would say that when people must leave their name, they are more likely to write something coherent, useful and fair. This isn’t always the case, just more likely. So I suggest encouraging people to use Facebook, Google+ and any other tool that requires taking ownership of one’s words.

    1. @Karyn
      Thanks for your comment.

      One of the benefits of using Customer Lobby is that only verified customers can write a review of your business on Customer Lobby. This eliminates the incoherent rants from competitors or other non-customers.

      In addition, after a review is written, we automatically ask the reviewer to post their review to Facebook (one click). If your customers only go to Facebook directly to write a review, that content, with all of it’s search engine value (SEO, structured data, etc), is locked inside of Facebook.

  4. @Karyn…good points Karyn. Anonymity does seem to foster poor & abusive communications.

    Google+ does not allow someone wanting to comment to use credentials from other vendors. So…it requires the person to join an entity they have no interest in. You have to complete a profile, create ANOTHER password, wait for a verification email or text message, log back and FINALLY make your comment. This is a road block for many.

  • Fred May www.brotherscleaning.com

    @Karyn...good points Karyn. Anonymity does seem to foster poor & abusive communications. Google+ does not allow someone wanting to comment to use credentials from other vendors. So...it requires the person to join an entity they have no interest in. You have to complete a profile, create ANOTHER password, wait for a verification email or text message, log back and FINALLY make your comment. This is a road block for many.
    UpVote Reply 0 Upvotes
  • Karyn Young

    Facebook also requires a person provide their name, doesn't it? So the issue here not necessarily that people don't want to use Google+ or that Google is all about domination (although it might be), the issue is that people want distance when the give feedback. Email actually feels fairly impersonal because the communication only goes between 2 people...it is likely to be published publicly. Same with a phone call. And Facebook has MUCH higher usage than Google+ so Facebook shows up as being used by at least the younger crowd. This whole conversation is about public reviews so that customers can assess a company. I would say that when people must leave their name, they are more likely to write something coherent, useful and fair. This isn't always the case, just more likely. So I suggest encouraging people to use Facebook, Google+ and any other tool that requires taking ownership of one's words.
    UpVote Reply 0 Upvotes
    • Ted Paff www.customerlobby.com

      @Karyn Thanks for your comment. One of the benefits of using Customer Lobby is that only verified customers can write a review of your business on Customer Lobby. This eliminates the incoherent rants from competitors or other non-customers. In addition, after a review is written, we automatically ask the reviewer to post their review to Facebook (one click). If your customers only go to Facebook directly to write a review, that content, with all of it's search engine value (SEO, structured data, etc), is locked inside of Facebook.
      UpVote Reply 0 Upvotes
  • Fred May www.brotherscleaning.com

    Demographics also have a lot to do with this. Many of our regular customers that have been with us for over 20 years are 50 and older, so the Internet is "new" to many of them and a bit intimidating. Google has lots and lots of young geeks who don't know or even remember a world without the Internet, so much of their planning and programing excludes a large segment of the population. Our company has done a pretty good job of coaxing some of our clients to get on the Internet and leave a review but when Google asks them to sign-up for Google+, they exit. Their experience leaving a review on Customer Lobby is much better and our approx 90 reviews are a testimony to the success of Customer Lobby. Thank you for being user friendly!
    UpVote Reply 0 Upvotes
  • Fred May www.brotherscleaning.com

    It's been clear for some time that Google is more concerned about it's domination than it's users, evidenced by their requirement that the person wanting to leave a review must join Google+. Many of my customers refuse to play this game.
    UpVote Reply 0 Upvotes
    • Ted Paff www.customerlobby.com

      @Fred I don't understand Google's rationale for many decisions they have made recently. Its hard to blame a customer that says "I don't want to join another social network. I have Facebook...that's enough." The result for those of us that want Google reviews is that we simply need to keep asking a larger and larger group of our customers. Keep using our Smart Invite functionality and they will build slowly.
      UpVote Reply 0 Upvotes
  • Arizona Pest Control www.azpest.com/blog

    Don't forget mobile review functionality. :)
    UpVote Reply 0 Upvotes
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