When was the last time you read a review for a business? It was probably recent. Most people value online reviews as an objective source of information about a business. A good number of positive reviews, especially recent ones, can benefit your business by convincing customers to take action.
If you want more reviews for your business, you have to learn how to ask for them. We’ll help you determine how you should ask for Google Reviews, who you should ask, and when you should ask them. Plus, we’ve written text and email templates to help you easily ask for more reviews.
Why Your Reviews Matter
Some business owners are content to let their customers take the initiative to leave online reviews. Your reviews are a key part of your digital marketing strategy, and you should not be content to just let them happen on their own. While reviews do occur naturally, successful businesses are strategizing how to constantly get more reviews.
There are a few reasons why online reviews are so important:
- Reviews are social proof for your business. According to Nielsen, “consumer opinions posted online” was the second-most trusted form of advertising, with 70 percent of people trusting this source completely or somewhat. The more positive sentiment in your reviews, the more likely your potential customers are to choose you.
- Reviews improve your Local SEO. Google looks to your online reviews as a signal of credibility and customer satisfaction. Quantity and consistency with reviews can improve your visibility in local search results.
- Reviews help you gain customer insights. Monitoring your online reputation gives you a pulse on your customer satisfaction. Negative reviews can facilitate improvements to your business or customer support.
Who You Should Ask for Reviews
If you only have a limited number of Google Reviews right now, we recommend reaching out to your happy customers and brand ambassadors. You know the people who appreciate your business the most and have positive things to say. Those are the people you should ask to leave a review.
Eventually, you want to put in place a strategy to collect reviews on an ongoing basis. Whether through automated texts, emails, etc., you want to constantly be inviting customers to leave online reviews. Some people will leave reviews for your business on their own, but you should have a plan in place to encourage reviews from all your satisfied customers.
The Best Time to Ask for Reviews
When it comes to asking for customer reviews, timing is everything. You want to encourage your customers to leave reviews when positive experiences with your business are top of mind. If someone leaves a review immediately after interacting with your business, they may be more likely to include in-depth details instead of short, impersonal feedback.
Every business is different, and the best time to ask for a review depends on your customers, type of service, etc. Some examples of when you might ask for a review include:
- After a customer makes a purchase
- After you complete service for a customer
- When a customer reaches a certain loyalty status
- After a customer pays an invoice
- After you resolve a customer service request
- When a customer compliments your business
In general, you should aim to ask for reviews when your customers are at peak satisfaction and have the time to write a review.
How to Ask for Google Reviews
No matter what format you choose to ask for a review, you should make it as easy as possible for your customer to do it. Keep your request short, sweet, and direct. Include a clear call to action and provide a link that takes them directly to your Google Reviews.
Get a Shareable Review Link
To create a link for your business:
- Go to Google’s Place ID Finder
- Enter your business name to generate a place ID
- Add your place ID to the end of this link: https://search.google.com/local/writereview?placeid=
Sharing this link with your customers will automatically create a window prompting them to write a review. You can send this link in an email or text or include it on your social media.
Asking for Reviews: In-Person Script
If you want to increase your number of Google Reviews, you should coach your team on how to ask for them on the spot. One of the best times to ask customers for reviews is in response to unsolicited praise.
An example script might look like this:
Customer offers praise about [X Service].
Employee: “Thank you! It means so much to hear your feedback because we work so hard to provide [X Service]. Would you mind sharing your experience in a Google Review?”
Customer: “Sure, I’d be happy to!”
At this point, your employees should provide the customer with the steps to leave a review. If you frequently interact with customers in person, it might be handy to keep a card with instructions on how to write a review and a QR code that links to your reviews. Or, your employees might follow up the conversation with a templated text message that includes the link.
Asking for Reviews: Text Template
Depending on your business, you may prefer to ask for customer reviews via text message. If you already offer any sort of text notifications or billing reminders, you should consider this method. And if you frequently ask for reviews in person, this can be a helpful way to follow up on those requests.
Compared to email, text message review requests have less competition for attention. Typically, a text message has a higher open rate than email. If you intend to ask for reviews via text, you should consider a business texting service to automate and schedule your messages.
Here are some example review texts you could use:
“Hi [First Name]. Since you had such a great experience with us, will you take a minute to leave us a review on Google? We’ve made it super easy for you. Just follow this link: [Link]“
“Thanks for choosing [Business Name]. Do you have a minute to review your experience today? Just follow this link: [Link]“
“Hey [First Name], thank you for your business! Your feedback makes it possible for us to continue offering great service. Will you share your experience in a Google Review? [Link]“
Asking for Reviews: Email Template
When you send a review request via email, you should find the best time to email your audience. You should also choose a clear and engaging subject line. For example, “How did we do?” or “Please share your feedback.”
Here is a general email template you could send any customer at any time:
“Hi [First Name],
Thank you for choosing [Business Name] for your [Service X].
If you’re happy with your service, the best compliment you can give our team is leaving a Google Review here: [Link]
It only takes a couple of minutes to share your feedback, and it helps us better serve you.
If you have any questions or problems, please contact us directly at [Phone Number].
The [Business Name] Team“
We recommend sending an email within a few days of your interaction with the customer. You should make an effort to personalize your review requests so your customer feels like you value their specific, individual contributions to your business. You can personalize your emails by including the customer’s name and the product or service they purchased.
Responding to Google Reviews
As you reach out to customers for more Google Reviews, remember to reply to every review that you receive. Responding to positive reviews shows your customers (and potential customers) that you care about their opinion and value their feedback.
Keep in mind that negative reviews can be good for your business. There’s no need to worry if you don’t have a perfect 5-star rating. Some customers might interpret this as “too good to be true.” The sweet spot for your rating would be anything near a 4.5.
Negative reviews also give you an opportunity to publicly demonstrate that your business is empathetic and accommodating to your customers — and that there is a real person behind your business profile. When responding to a negative review, show the customer that you care and provide additional context. When possible, provide a solution and direct the conversation to phone or email instead of the review platform.
More About Review Management
If you’re looking to improve your Local SEO and your online reputation, increasing your reviews is a great place to start. We can help you build your online reviews and monitor what people are saying about your business. Chat with our team to learn more.