97% of consumers look online for local goods and services1. Considering this statistic, there is no wonder that the #1 question we are asked day in and day out is “How do I get more reviews?.” The answer is really simple and everyone already knows it, Ask!
Asking for reviews is the ONLY way your organization is going to get more reviews. Here is the part you do not want to hear, it takes money, time, and effort. The amount of each of these depends on how effective your organization has learned to communicate with your clients. There are 4 basic ways to communicate:
4. Hand-Written/Print Promotion
If your team has not learned to collect email addresses then you can effectively eliminate options 2 & 3. Sure you can still request reviews through your website without having the clients email address but it is going to take much, much, more time to realize the desired end result.
Without options 2 & 3 your organization will need to dedicate staff in order to be effective. This staff will need to spend days, weeks, or months (depending on the size of your client base) doing one or a combination of two things.
1. Calling clients requesting reviews
2. Creating & Displaying Hand Written review request via postcards, window/door clings, etc.
While #2 is cheaper, labor wise, it has its fair share of costs in printing and postage. Both options have to develop a method in which they can successfully and verbally communicate the url the client needs to visit in order to leave the requested review. If you have not connected the dots yet, the 2 most effective and efficient communication methods involve Email and your website. In order for your website to be efficient it needs to be backed up with an email.
1. BIA/Kelsey, User View Wave VII, March 2010