Build Customer Trust and Social Cues About Your Locksmith Business
We will be providing advice on how to gain more reviews, but also stress that there is an ever-present need to do so. One of the main differentiators that you may typically see when you do a Google search is the reviews. Why reviews are so important can be broken down into three categories:
- Quality of Reviews
- Quantity of Reviews
- Relevance of Review Content
Quality Of Reviews
The first and most important aspect is the quality of your reviews. You might see certain listings organically rank into the Google My Business Map packs based on the overall score. A business with a 5.0-star average rating will be more attractive than those with a 3.0-star rating or less. Would you want to do business with someone that is constantly being disparaged? The optics of your business’ lower score promotes less desirability of service to the public.
Quantity of Reviews
Secondly, the quantity of reviews feeds into this same train of thought. A business with only 2 or 3 reviews isn’t going to have the same ranking power as one with a few hundred. When customers are making purchasing decisions, they want as much information on a service provider or product as possible. Google also wants customers to interact with your listing as much as possible. You may think that having a friend or family member post a review once in a while for your lock shop will help, but that short-term boost will not sustain your Google Map Listing for the long term. You need to get reviews from your customers frequently and consistently.
Relevance of Review Content
Lastly, the relevance of the review content does matter, and Google judges reviews on how relevant and real they are.
Google values real, honest reviews with relevant keywords over reviews that have been purposely overstuffed with keywords in an attempt to game the system. If it was as easy as tossing a bunch of keywords like “Car Key Programming” or “Lockout” in every review, then a lot of fake reviews would boost rating scores. But the Google review algorithm is very sophisticated and can usually tell when a review is fabricated vs. one that is real and honest.
Google also has “attributes” for each review, which are predetermined selectable factors your customers can click that also help your ranking. For example, if customers consistently choose the “Responsive” and “Good value” attributes, it’s a really good idea to try and include those same attributes/phrases in your site content.
So now that you know these three areas of Quality of Reviews, Quantity of Reviews, and Relevance of Review Content, how do you move forward? What can you do for your lock shop? The answer is simple: ASK.
IF YOU DON’T ASK, YOU DON’T GET
In-Person Requests For Reviews
The first way to ask for a review might be the most uncomfortable for some. Upon completing a job, you can let your customer know you appreciate their business and invite them to share their thoughts by leaving you a Google Review. While just asking directly is easy to do, it may not produce the desired amount of reviews. Customers may get busy and/or forget to do this for you, especially without a reminder. Or, if they do remember, they might have a hard time finding your Google Map listing due to so much noise online and many similarly-named businesses. It can be very confusing for customers.
Post Job Communication
We all know it can be expensive to acquire a customer. When you decide to do marketing, you’ll want to make sure that upfront cost is amortized by encouraging a second, third, or fourth call.
Once you’ve acquired a customer, it’s your job to foster the deepening of that relationship. Open lines of communication are the best way to do that. Not only will you want to get their feedback, but you’ll also want them to return to use one of your other services. It’s never been easier to communicate with hundreds or thousands of people at once. As locksmiths, you have several avenues which include, email marketing, website updates, Google map posting, Facebook posting, Twitter, Instagram, texting, and direct mailers. Which avenue you choose is not as important as simply deciding to act.
One of the first steps you can take to make it as easy as possible for your customers to leave you a review is to send a service follow-up email. Keep in mind many of your customers still aren’t going to leave you a review and many may not open the email, but the purpose is to make it as easy as possible to capture that review.
Send your customer an email thanking them for selecting you, include a clickable link to your Google My Business listing, and let them know their reviews are always appreciated. One tip that is often useful is to include a “Not Sure What To Say?” section where you provide a few suggestions for what your customers might want to review, like:
- What service(s) did we provide and what did you like about the service?
- Who was the technician that assisted you and what did you like about them?
- Why would you recommend us to friends, family, or co-workers?
- Is there anything you felt could be improved on regarding our service? If so, how and why.
By including a section like this, you make it easier for your customers to feel comfortable leaving the review. You also have them thinking about what you did for them. This increases the likelihood they’ll leave specific keywords that can end up benefitting your organic ranking.
Follow Up Email, Text, or QR Codes
You can also apply the same ideas mentioned above directly from your phone. For this, just get your GMB Review link and text it to your customer. Much like with email, you can thank them for their business and encourage them to leave a review of the experience through a concise text message.
Leverage QR Codes
Another suggestion comes in the way of QR Codes. By now you may have seen the use of QR Codes becoming more commonplace. From restaurants utilizing them to replace physical menus or hotels putting them out to give you WiFi access.
You can generate a QR Code for your business on a wide variety of materials to encourage reviews. You can place them on receipts, business cards, or even for those with physical shops you can place a QR Code on “Review Us” signage near your register. Whichever method you choose, remember to set up the experience. Remember customer service skills and if you have employees, make sure they are as skilled at customer service as they are at programming a car key. Word of mouth is also a powerful tool and you want to make sure every customer’s experience is as good as their first.
If you can, explain to your customers what you are doing and why. This puts customers at ease, shares more information that they can put into their reviews, and shows them the value of your work. Many times customers cannot leave good reviews because they simply don’t understand what you are doing, only that the work is getting done.
Contact us today with your questions about Google Reviews, GMB, and more. We’re here for you.
If you have questions about how to improve the quality and quantity of reviews, setting up or running your Google My Business listing, or other Digital Marketing topics, please be sure to contact us. We specialize in locksmith marketing services including GMB optimization, website design, and SEO (Search Engine Optimization).
Below is a video to help explain what we’ve covered. We hope you’ve learned a lot, but more importantly, we hope this helps you get more reviews and more lifelong and satisfied customers.