Why Online Reviews Are Essential For Your Business

Online Reviews

Online reviews and online reputation management are invaluable for consumers who have never tried your product or service and want to know others’ honest experiences with your business. A 2021 survey indicated that 98% of consumers read online reviews for local businesses. 

First off, it’s important to specify what an online review is. It’s a reflection of a past or current customer’s experience with your organization’s products or services. Reviews can be posted on sites such as Google Reviews, Yelp, and Facebook.  

Testimonials can also be very important but are different than reviews as they are found on your business’s website. Testimonials are valuable but arguably not as valuable as reviews due to their tendency to always be positive. Which is how they should be. I mean, who wants to have a customer’s negative experience on their website? 

 In this blog post, we will discuss the importance of online reviews and how they can help your business grow! 

Reasons Why Online Reviews are Essential

1. More Consumers are Reading Online Reviews than Ever Before.

Anyone who has ever looked for a new restaurant or hotel knows that online reviews can be extremely helpful. But it’s not just businesses that are benefiting from the power of customer feedback—consumers are, too. A study from 2021 indicated that 77% ‘always’ or ‘regularly’ read them when browsing for local businesses (up from 60% in 2020).

Why the sudden interest in online opinions? One theory is that the growth of social media has made us more accustomed to seeking out the opinions of others before deciding. Whatever the reason, there’s no doubt that online reviews are here to stay.


2. Online Reviews Impact SEO (Search Engine Optimization) Rankings 

Google trusts the influence of word-of-mouth marketing. As a result, Google factors in the quantity and quality of reviews to decide what position a business’s website will show when a user searches for a product or service. Just as customers use online reviews to validate their purchase decision, search engines such as Google take a similar stance. 

This should come as no surprise because users and search engines have a similar objective. Google wants to weed through the vast web to deliver you the right information, service, or product in the fastest way possible, and this aligns with our goals as users! Reviews pretty much work as crowd-sourced recommendations.

3. Your Business will appear more Trustworthy 

Did you know that 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as they would trust a recommendation from someone they know. When your business has plenty of reviews, Users will likely see it as more trustworthy. This is essential for any business, but especially important for small businesses, who may have a harder time building trust with potential customers. 

People are more likely to believe what others say about a product or service than what a company says about itself.  This is called social proof, and it’s a powerful psychological phenomenon.  

In other words, your potential customers are more likely to trust the opinion of someone who has already tried your product or service than they are to believe your own marketing materials.

4. Online Reviews Impact Sales 

 As you can gather from the above information, reviews impact sales. It’s important to note that negative reviews are not always a bad thing. Some customers may have given a negative review for reasons that a future customer will not care about.  

An e-commerce study observed that the purchase likelihood for a product with five reviews is 270% greater than the purchase likelihood of a product with no reviews. While this study was specific to an e-commerce product, the results are applicable to business reviews.

Tips to Generate More Online Reviews

As a business owner, you know the high-value product or service you provide your customers. Encouraging customers to review your business online will help future customers see the same value you see.

Here are some tips on how to generate more online reviews:

  1. Make it easy for customers to leave a review. Add links to your Google My Business page and other review sites on your website and in your emails.
  2. Send follow-up emails after a purchase or service is complete. In these emails, include a link to your Google My Business page or other review site and ask the customer to leave a review.
  3. Respond to all reviews, both positive and negative. Show potential customers that you value feedback and are willing to make changes based on customer input.



Online reviews help future customers see the value in your product or service. Encouraging your customers to do so will help your business grow and gain trust. Do you need help with setting up Google My Business, email follow-ups, and more? Book A wingman today to get your business set up to optimize online reviews.