As a local business, you are likely familiar with your closest competitors; it’s an ongoing challenge to outrank them and be listed first in search results. How do you get an edge in this never-ending battle? Online reviews are playing an increasingly important role in SEO - their impact on rankings can’t be ignored, especially if you’re a local company that’s trying to optimize your website. We’ve listed a few reasons why your business should include online reviews in its SEO strategy:
- They’re a significant ranking factor. One report showed that online reviews made up 7% of organic search result rankings. Along with content, links, and citations, online reviews are a crucial aspect of SEO. The quantity and quality of your reviews will make an impact on your website’s rankings. Google pays attention to customer testimonies, which means that you should too.
- With positive reviews, your business will persuade more customers to click your website. Data indicates that organic CTR influences rankings, so the more customers that click your website, the better you’ll rank. If your business has limited or negative reviews, few customers are likely to click through to your website; it makes your business appear untrustworthy. Consumers can even filter search results by their rating, so your business won’t show up if it isn’t above 4-stars. Glowing testimonies make users more likely to click your website, which can positively impact your rankings.
- They provide content for Google to crawl. Google loves content; it gives its bots text to crawl, which helps them discern the quality and relevance of your website. Online reviews are free content that is full of relevant keywords to supply these text bots. With more testimonies, Google will have an easier time determining your website’s ranking, which can help your SEO.
- A lack of reviews can hurt your SEO. A case study examined the effect of removed reviews on the rankings of several companies. A Google update in 2012 removed all anonymous reviews, which resulted in many businesses losing dozens or even hundreds of reviews. The results? They fell multiple ranking spots. Ratings can not be ignored when you’re trying to be a competitive local business.
- Online reviews influence Google’s local pack results. One study showed that review signals comprise 13% of local pack ranking factors. Being listed as one of the three results in Google’s local pack makes your business highly visible. If you achieve a higher star rating than the other listings, you’ll likely be clicked on more than your competitors will be.
The number and rating of your reviews have a substantial impact on your local SEO. To take hold of your online presence, you need reputation management software by RepCo; it’s an essential component of a search engine optimization strategy. This software will allow your business to generate reviews, monitor new reviews, and analyze the data for valuable insights. Gain control of your reputation using RepCo’s management tool.