Top 4 reasons why Review Sites should be part of your Digital Marketing Strategy
Reason #1 – Consumers trust online reviews
Despite hesitation and reluctance by many small business owners, online reviews are becoming a larger part of business today. This review revolution is being driven by the trust associated with online reviews. In fact, a recent study suggests that 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as they would a personal recommendation.
This is likely the reason that online reviews have become so popular, with 95% of consumers saying they value them and 86% admitting that internet reviews play an important decision in purchase decisions. In addition, online review sites are having a significant impact on search rankings and traffic. Each year, a survey is conducted with local SEO professionals on which factors they see impacting search rankings the most. In the most recent Local SEO Search Ranking Factors study, review sites leapt to almost a 10% ranking share. This means that your review profiles make up about 10% of your search engine ranking placements.
Reason # 2 – The traffic coming from their sites can be significant
Many of these websites are seeing tremendous growth in both traffic and interaction. Yelp for example, currently sees 142 Million unique visitors each month to it’s platform (and growing).
Hearing Tracker, although a newer platform, is generating an estimated 25k visits per month. As a small-to-medium sized business, it can be difficult to get the traffic that many of these platforms get. Improving your presence within these sites can help get your website visits that you otherwise would have missed out on. While competitor HealthyHearing.
Reason #3 – Review sites can be an effective part of a Barnacle SEO strategy
What is Barnacle SEO, you ask?
Have you ever Googled a keyword and all or most of the first page is taken up by large directory sites? For example, if you were to Google “Italian Restaurant <City>” or “Hotel <City>”, you likely won’t see many local businesses on the first page results. Restaurant keywords, for example, will be dominated by larger sites like Yelp, Urban Spoon, Trip Advisor or OpenTable.
Barnacle SEO is the strategy of attaching your practice to these larger sites and maximizing your exposure within their platforms. That way, you can indirectly receive the benefits of the traffic received by larger sites.
What sites should you try to use as part of your barnacle strategy? It depends on the local rankings in your area, but the most typical candidates are Yelp, Angie’s List, Hearing Tracker and Healthy Hearing.
Reason #4 – For Google+, more reviews = more direct local search traffic
Google+ reviews are probably the most important for improving rankings within Google search results. Businesses with a high overall score and more reviews can improve their standing in the “local pack” section of Google results.
What are the different review sites that an audiology or hearing aid practice should be concerned with?
There are many places on the web for consumers to I’ve feedback on products or services. For our clients, we try to focus on the following sites.
The Audiology-specific review site – Hearing Tracker
Industry-specific review sites are extremely important to your internet marketing strategy. Many SEO professionals believe that industry-specific sites provide important and valuable cues to Google, Yahoo and Bing. Hearing Tracker is the only independent (not manufacturer-owned) website dedicated to hearing that allows for both product and hearing professional reviews. Healthy Hearing allows for professional reviews (not product), but their site metrics are not as impressive and your placement on the site is dependent on the amount of business you do with Oticon.
In addition to being independent, Hearing Tracker is also creating some very unique and informative content for consumers. Consumers are drawn to the site because they have a lot of useful information about hearing, hearing loss and hearing products, and given the extremely promising visitor estimates and user engagement stats, we strongly recommend that hearing professionals create a profile on the site and consider an enhanced profile.
Interested in learning more about how review sites can impact your web presence? AuDSEO covers the topic in her IHS webinar “How to Blow Away Your Competition on Google”. If you would like even more information about the services AuDSEO can provide, please visit us at AuDseo.com, email us at [email protected] or call us at 602-850-1526.