Find a better way to manage your business’s online reputation with Top Rated Local®.
Top Rated Local® is not your average review site
A business’s online reputation is everything these days. That’s because consumers regularly do research online when they’re looking for a specific product or service, and as Millennials and Generation Z start becoming a bigger and bigger slice of the consumer population, more and more people will rely on reviews when making purchasing decisions.
Reviews are a huge part of your business’s overall online reputation. Not only do they say a lot about your business, but they affect where your website ranks in search results. Reviews can make your website more visible, and that means that the success of your business relies heavily on your ability to generate reviews and manage them, and that’s where Top Rated Local comes in.
We’re proud to say that Top Rated Local is not your typical review site. Top Rated Local is built on the five pillars of the customer experience, and it was created to empower consumers and businesses alike by capturing a business’s overall experience in a way that’s unlike anything else you’ll find out there. And today, we’re going to go over the advantages of using Top Rated Local for both consumers and businesses.
Five advantages of using Top Rated Local for businesses
#1. Get a good idea of your business’s overall reputation
There are numerous review platforms out there, from Angie’s List and Yelp to Google and even Facebook. Having a profile — and actively monitoring it — on each of these platforms is essential to maintaining a strong overall online reputation, but it can be a lot of work to constantly check up on each one of these platforms to find out if you have a new review to respond to and to figure out where your business stands.
If only there was a way to get a good idea of your business’s overall reputation without having to check a dozen different websites. Luckily, with Top Rated Local, there is!
One of the biggest benefits of using Top Rated Local is that your Rating Score™ captures the overall customer experience — not just your ratings on Top Rated Local.
Your business’ Rating Score is determined by aggregating all of the reviews on verified review sites. From there, a proprietary algorithm analyzes your business’s overall rating based on the number of reviews you have, the number of verified sites your business is listed on, the average rating of your reviews and more.
#2. You don’t have to pay to play
A lot of review sites out there are free to get signed up on but offer paid plans in exchange for higher placement in their search results. So, for example, if a consumer is searching for a plumber on one of these sites, they aren’t necessarily getting results based on a company’s reviews or online reputation. Instead, they’re getting results based on how much a company is willing to pay.
Running a small business these days can be tough, and making a small business successful and profitable can be even more difficult. This can make it difficult for small businesses to compete with bigger, more profitable companies on these pay-to-play review sites.
Top Rated Local does offer a variety of different plans, starting with a free option, but signing up for a paid account does not mean that your business will show up at the top of the search results (though there are a number of incredible benefits).
The order in which businesses are presented in the search results on Top Rated Local is based on their Rating Score — not on how much money a business is spending with Top Rated Local. That gives small businesses an even playing field to compete in, and it ensures that consumers are getting suggestions based on a business’s reputation instead of how much money they are willing to spend.
#3. Get notified when you receive reviews
Responding to your reviews is absolutely essential to the success of your business, and that’s true regardless of whether the review in question is positive or negative. Responding to reviews demonstrates to both your existing customers and potential customers that, if they take the time to write a review for you, you care enough to take the time to respond to it and to address any concerns that they brought up. And when it comes to negative or one-star reviews, responding to your reviews will allow you to share your side of the story.
Even if you get occasional reviews that are fake or written by one of your competitors hoping to undermine your success, crafting a response can help to make things right. Unfortunately, it’s not easy to get a review deleted — even if you can prove that it’s fake — and responding is often your only course of action to let the world know that the review isn’t authentic.
In addition to making sure that you respond to every review, you should make it a point to do so promptly. In fact, most consumers expect you to respond within a reasonable timeframe — 72 to hours or so.
Plus, if you respond to a review fast enough, your chances of a customer changing a one-star review to a three- or four-star review are greatly increased. That’s right, responding quickly enough may even eliminate an unsightly one-star review that could hurt or diminish your business’s online reputation!
#4. Display the Top Rated Local trust badge on your website
These days, trust is everything, and it’s imperative to earn the trust of consumers if you want your business to be a success.
When someone comes across your business online, the only thing they have to help them determine how much to trust you is your word — and your business’s reviews! — and you need to give people a good reason to choose you rather than turning to the next business on the list.
When you sign up to become a Top Rated Local business, you’ll have the ability to display the Top Rated Local trust badge on your website and any other marketing assets you wish. When people see that Top Rated Local badge, it helps to build trust and gives them a reason to choose your business over your competition.
#5. Embed reviews on your website
As mentioned, establishing trust right away is a huge part of any business’s success in this day and age, and customer reviews are a huge part of that. Let’s face it, every window cleaner, plumber, home contractor and electrician out there claims to be the best at what they do. They all claim to have experience, value integrity and put their customers first, but the reality is that not all of these businesses can be the best, and not all of them can be trusted.
What a company says about itself is important, but it doesn’t compare to what a company’s customers say about it. When your customers go on and on about how great it is to work with your company, it says a lot and helps to give potential customers more confidence in working with you.
Displaying reviews on your website is a great way to add trust and give people a reason to work with you, and when you become a Top Rated Local business, displaying those reviews is easier than ever. With Top Rated Local, you can add a widget to your website that will display your reviews directly on your site. That means that consumers don’t have to go look for your Yelp or see what customers are saying on Facebook. All they have to do is go to your website, and they can see your reviews!
Enjoy the benefits of utilizing a different kind of review platform.
Reputation management should be a focus of every business, and that’s true regardless of what size your business is or what industry you work in. Luckily, with the help of Top Rated Local and Marketing 360®’s reputation management software, you’ll have everything you need to maintain your business.
Originally published 10/13/19