Earlier this month, Joy Hawkins, founder of US and Canadian SEO agency Sterling Sky, published a fascinating case study that tested whether getting more customer reviews helped improve your Google Maps rankings.
Joy’s conclusion was that “there does appear to be a ranking boost once a listing has ten reviews”.
We decided to run the test ourselves
At the time of reading the case study, Eurisko’s Google Business Profile (formerly Google My Business) had nine Google reviews.
So, we set about securing at least one more.
Here’s the before and after:
Before – 9 November 2022
After – 14 November 2022
We immediately jumped a spot after securing at least ten reviews. While correlation doesn’t equal causation, we found the results very interesting. It’s also something we’ll be pushing as part of our SEO service offering.
What’s the bigger picture?
Getting more customer reviews is not just about improving your search visibility (rankings).
The bigger picture is the perceived value of your products and services in the eyes of the customer.
We all look at customer reviews, whether we’re on Google, Amazon, ProductReview.com.au or wherever.
A 2020 study by Capterra revealed that “98% of Australians read online reviews before they make a purchase, and 94% believe them to be trustworthy”.
Online reviews have a huge influence on some of our purchase decisions.
What does this mean for your local SEO strategy?
The data shows a strong relationship between getting 10 customer reviews and seeing a Google Business Profile rankings boost.
It’s one tactic in your local search strategy amongst others including (but not limited to):
- Securing and optimising your Google Business Profile, Bing Maps, and Apple Maps listings.
- Responding to all reviews (positive and negative) to show that you care about your customers, want to make right, and care about your online reputation.
- Ensuring your Name, Address, Phone and Website (NAPW) data is up to date on key local directories like Yellow Pages, Yelp and others.
- Building or earning links from local websites.
Does your business need help getting more Google reviews?
We’ve done it for Auto Masters and their 70+ local stores around Australia (read the case study) and we can do it for you, too.