Reviews have always been important but the bar has been raised.
There have been a couple of news pieces today and both of them are relevant to business owners in a big way.
First up, it was ruled that Yelp is not liable for the reviews posted to their site. This is kind of obvious but there have been plenty of business owners that have taken issue with the site and the ways reviews are relayed. In short, you are fully responsible for your negative reviews and that will not change.
Next, and much more importantly, Google is now allowing users to filter local search results. They can filter by ratings, hours and more. What does this mean to you? Well, that depends.
If you have a lot of solid reviews and a good rating, this is great news for you. This will give you the opportunity to leapfrog your competition when these filters are used, and they will be used quite often. If you don't have a lot of reviews or you have some bad reviews, feel free to contact us and get some information on what we do with Review Campaigns and Reputation Monitoring. Making sure you have this taken care of is a necessity. Alpha Dog clients are going to have a massive advantage in this space until other businesses catch up.
It's also no longer merely an option to have your Google location optimized correctly within your Google My Business Dashboard, it's also a necessity now thanks to these changes. Now that users can filter by this information, you are potentially losing out on a lot of new business by ignoring this aspect of your online marketing. You can contact us if you need help with your Google My Business optimization.
Below is a snapshot of the way users can now filter through local search result. This will be the 'norm' sooner rather than later on both desktop and mobile.