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Should I Ask Clients to Use Keywords in Reviews?

A business woman talks to a client, both sitting at a desk. Caption says: How to ask for reviews the right way.

Did you know keywords in reviews can significantly improve your local search ranking?

Research consistently shows a strong connection between keywords in reviews and improved rankings on Google. One study even called it the number one way to boost local search results.

So, should you ask clients to use keywords in their reviews?

Unfortunately, it’s not so simple. Asking clients to use specific words or phrases can make their reviews feel inauthentic or forced—which is never a good thing.

So what do we recommend?

Don’t Ask for Keywords. Ask for Details.

Simply asking your clients for detailed reviews can get them to naturally use keywords that will improve your local search results. It may seem foreign and a little awkward at first, but it will come naturally with a bit of practice.

When you ask your clients to leave detailed reviews face to face, you gain the opportunity to coach them on the type of review that would benefit you the most.

While you are not trying to influence their opinion, you should ask them to use specifics to clarify what services or products they liked the best and how your business went above and beyond to deliver exceptional quality and attention to detail. The more detail, the more your reviews will naturally incorporate keyword-heavy language, in turn boosting your search rankings.

Here are two examples showing you the difference between a serviceable review and a review that hits it out of the ballpark in richness and detail:

Example 1: 

Exceptional work. Professional and fast.

Example 2:

John arrived on time and brought all the electrical equipment he needed to install my new panel box and do some re-wiring safely. John’s customer service and level of attention were very much appreciated when he explained how to check the breaker panel and why the old wiring was not up to par with local building and safety codes. As far as electricians go, John’s rates are very reasonable. The turnaround times were so reasonable. I would recommend this company to anyone!

The first example doesn’t provide enough information to give Google a good sense of which services the client liked the most. From a consumer’s perspective, it’s not the most compelling review, either.

By contrast, the second example includes specifics like the electrician’s name, a handful of the services they received, and what made this electrician stand out from the rest. Notice how the text naturally incorporates industry-specific keywords, such as breaker panel, wiring, and electricians.

It’s not hard to see why the second example is preferred. But it can be hard to get your clients to leave such detailed reviews.

Read on to learn more about how to ask for longer reviews like a pro.

Prompt Your Clients for Detailed, Long-Form Reviews by Asking Questions

Using a template to ask for long-form reviews is a great way to get your client’s honest feedback while ensuring a more robust and full review that attracts Google’s attention.

Instead of just providing your clients with a blank forum to fill out, why not ask them a few questions that prompt them to be more descriptive?

You can ask questions like:

  • What services did you receive today?
  • Which of our locations did you visit?
  • How did our technicians do?
  • Was there a specific technique that you’d like to recognize here?
  • What aspects of working with us did you like most?
  • Is this your first interaction with our team?
  • Have you experienced other services we have provided?
  • How do we measure up against the competition?
  • Do you have any tips for us?

Be sure to let your clients know that you’d still appreciate a short and to-the-point review if they don’t have a lot of time.

While long-form reviews are ideal, the quantity of positive reviews you receive also plays a part in your ranking success.

What Is The Best Way to Ask for a Review?

If a follow-up email is already a regular part of your business, why not attach a link to the invoice you’re providing that takes your client to your business’s review forum?

This can be the perfect opportunity to politely request a review without putting too much pressure on the client.

In addition to this, you can use your social media platforms to request reviews and have your technicians let your clients know that while not required, leaving a review would be the perfect way to show appreciation for a job well done.

You could also put together a direct email, which you can send to clients on your mailing list.

How to Craft an Email to Ask for a Review

Do you have questions about how to craft an email to ask for a review?

We have answers.

Below, you’ll find a list of pointers that will help you create the ideal template you can go on to send to all of your preferred clients:

  • Personalize the subject line with something attention-worthy
  • Ask them directly to leave a review
  • Provide a direct link to the review forum

Here is an example that will show you how each piece comes into play:

Subject: Hello Mark, we need your help!

Hello Mark,

It was our pleasure to complete your electrical panel box installation recently.

Thank you for choosing us.

Online reviews help us bring our reasonable electrical services to more households and businesses like yours.

Could you take a moment to leave us a review?

Follow this direct link to let us know what you liked about our services: <link>

Here are some things you could touch on if you need some inspiration:

  • Specific services or products provided
  • Location of services provided
  • Did we meet your expectations?
  • Did you work with a particular person who went above and beyond?
  • Would you recommend our company?

We appreciate you taking a minute to leave us a detailed review, but short thoughts are also appreciated if you only have a second to spare.

Thanks for your help,

John

Now that you know that robust customer reviews can boost your site’s visibility in SERPs, you can craft a strategy that aligns best with your business model.

Looking for More Review-Management Tips?

LinkNow to the Rescue!

Liked what you read? Feel inspired to rework your review-management strategy? Leave us a comment below and we’ll get back to you.

If you’re looking for more tips to manage your online presence, LinkNow’s here to help. We develop data-driven solutions to help you build your brand, grow your audience, and manage your reputation online.

Discover how we can help you in a free consultation. Contact us to website@linknowmedia.com at (888) 667-7186 to get started today.

 

Improve Your Google Ranking Fast with Keyword-Optimized Reviews

As we’ve written elsewhere, it can take a long time to start ranking for new content. Google’s timelines can be really frustrating! So, what do you do if you want to improve your Google ranking fast?

Research has shown that there’s a strong connection between keywords in reviews and improved local search results. One study named it the number one way to boost local SEO. Not NAP clean-ups. Not GMB posts. Not a 5-star score. Keywords.

So, getting them is a great way to improve your search results. But should you do it? Should you start telling your clients to write “best plumbing repair service Atlanta” in their review?

Well… not exactly.  You don’t want to force your customers into writing something they otherwise wouldn’t say. It may, however, be wise to steer them in the right direction.

Do I Need Keywords in My Reviews?

Keywords are like signposts: they point people (and search engines) in the right direction. From Google’s perspective, keywords show that a text (reviews, website content, blog posts, etc.) is relevant to searchers. When a Google user enters a search term, Google wants to display the most relevant results at the top of the page. Keywords help Google sift through and find them.

This goes for the landing pages on your website, as much as for the reviews on your GMB listing. Google likes it when a review includes keywords. It shows that your landscaping company actually provides the landscaping services you advertise. And that someone out there really believes they are the “best landscaping company in San Diego!” Who wouldn’t want to rank for a keyword like that?

Should I Ask My Clients to Use Keywords in Their Reviews?

At LinkNow Media, we do not recommend that business owners ask their clients to include specific keywords in their reviews.

Why not?

  1. It’s inauthentic. You want your reviews to be truthful. Google does, too. If you ask your clients to use specific phrases and keywords, their reviews will feel scripted. Forced. Fake.
  2. It’s unconvincing. Positive reviews are supposed to be convincing. They should show that you are an authority in your industry—a professional that consumers can trust. By asking clients to follow a script, you’re limiting the potential of your reviews. Ultimately, they’ll be far less convincing than if they felt natural.
  3. It’s risky. Google doesn’t like SEO trickery. They’ve clamped down on previous SEO “hacks,” and they’re bound to do the same for future ones. If you try to game the system by shoehorning keywords into your reviews, you risk being penalized by Google down the road.

The bottom line is that Google values keyword-optimized reviews because the business owner has no control over them! They’re spontaneous, authentic, and truthful. They’re the perfect reference.

How Do I Get Keywords in My Reviews?

You want keywords in your reviews. But you also want your reviews to sound natural. What can you do?

The best course of action: ask your clients to leave detailed reviews. Give them some guidelines. For example, if you’re a plumber, you may want to ask your customers to leave reviews that mention:

  • The service you provided
  • The time it took for you to respond and complete the job
  • Pricing information
  • The quality of customer service.

By doing so, keywords will naturally appear in your clients’ writing. Plus, it’ll sound more convincing for readers.

Consider the following two reviews from LinkNow Media’s Google My Business listing:

Pretty bare bones. Not a whole lot of information. Let’s look at the second one:

Notice the keywords: SEO services, company’s web presence, design assistant, as well as our company name. The client was not asked to use these terms. Rather, they came out naturally because the reviewer provided ample detail. Plus, it also makes the review much more convincing for reviewers.

In short: Ask your clients to leave reviews. But give them more to go off. Ask them to provide details of the services you provided, how long it took, so on and so forth, and you’ll see keywords naturally arise in your reviews. That way, you’ll help build a solid online footprint—and trustworthy reputation. Two birds with one stone. We like that.

Need Help Managing Your Online Reputation?

With over 10,000 clients, we at LinkNow Media know a thing or two about reputation management. Over our many years, we’ve built a strong online presence—not just for ourselves, but for thousands of business owners across North America.

If you need help proving your worth to the world and drumming up business, give us a shout at website@linknowmedia.com, or at 1-888-667-7186. Oh, and don’t forget to comment below!

Why Should Your Small Business Respond to Google Reviews?

garageWhen someone takes time to do something nice, you likely say thank you, almost reflexively. There’s no reason why you shouldn’t be saying thank you online either, especially when it comes to Google Reviews.

Responding to Google Reviews can help your business out in more ways than one. Here are some reasons why you should respond to Google Reviews from LinkNow Media:

It’s Good Manners

From someone holding the elevator door to handing you your change, you say thank you many times throughout the day. It’s a nice thing to do and it acknowledges someone’s kindness, no matter how small it might be. If someone writes you a Google review, it only makes sense that you respond with a thank you just as you would in real life. Don’t overthink it. Let them know that you appreciate them taking time out of their day to let others know about your service or product.

It Helps SEO

You may not see the point in responding to something as simple as, “Great place” or “Good service”, but replying can help with your website’s position. After all, it isn’t like someone took a lot of time out of their day to write a long, glowing review. However, responding to a review, no matter how small, will encourage others to leave a review in the future. According to statistics, consumers are more likely to leave a review when they see that the business owner responds to reviews, and the more quality reviews you have, the better your search rankings will be.

It Builds Trust

When people are searching for a service that you offer, they are likely reading reviews from previous customers, and that means bad reviews, too. While receiving harsh criticism is never fun, it always a chance to show how far you will go to right a wrong. Demonstrate your ability to be professional, accept responsibility and offer up a solution.  This will show potential and current clients that your company is focused on client satisfaction.

Final Thoughts

What goes around comes around. If you are being nice online, people will see your kinds words and will think highly of you. Not to mention, being nice has its benefits when it comes online exposure. For instance, you’re always being cyber friendly and encouraging, other companies or clients may follow suite and return the favor!

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