How Important Are Online Reviews? By Sarah Malcolm
Nine out of ten consumers read and rely on online reviews. Seventy-two percent of consumers say positive reviews inspire trust in their local business. These numbers alone basically say that online reviews are everything. They have become the key metric in helping consumers evaluate a local market.
Why are online reviews powerful as a lead generating tool? They help consumers evaluate an agent’s honesty, reputation, and knowledge of a particular neighborhood based on past clients. Potential clients are interested in whether or not a real estate agent has a good personality, is a good listener, is quick to respond, and accessible through multiple channels. How will they get the honest answers to these questions? The truth lies in the online review.
If you don’t have an online review strategy in place, you’re missing out on a golden opportunity to attract new customers.most real estate agents only earn up to five leads per year as a result of online reviews. However, the survey also found that some agents fare much better when it comes to online reviews.
Here are ways you can benefit from an online review:
Get at least one review on Yelp – Not only is Yelp the leading dedicated consumer review site, but it is fully integrated with Apple’s iOS map and business directory. All businesses should be listed on Yelp, and even just a simple review is enough to push the results to the top. Of course, you want as many clients as possible to provide honest reviews of your services. Only ask active Yelp users to post a review. Otherwise, it may not show up on the review site.
Concentrate on Google+ Local first – Make sure your real estate business is listed on Google+ Local, and then ask your clients to post reviews there. A Google+ listing is essential for really boosting your SEO. Your business won’t show up correctly in Google search without verified Google+ business information, so make sure you take the time to get that in order.
Facebook -- Current and former clients can post recommendations and reviews on social networking sites, especially Facebook. Agents and potential clients both find this very helpful. Be careful your Facebook page is set up as a “place” to display reviews.
Realtor.com Account -- Setting up a Realtor.com Socialbios account is essential for agent search and your ability to extend the value of your LinkedIn and Facebook reviews.
Check for Competition – Look at each review site concerning your competition. If the most reviewed competitor has less than twenty-five reviews, you can overtake them easily and dominate your niche or location.
Building a strong collection of online reviews is a powerful way to set yourself up for success in the long run. Just remember that there are other valuable ways to gain new clients. Word-of-mouth still holds authority among clients and you need to focus on multiple channels to build a network of leads.
Need help with your social media strategy?
Contact Jen@thenewsfunnel.com to learn more. We manage some of the BIGGEST brand’s social media in CRE and more importantly WE GET RESULTS. Can I get an AMEN!?
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