Local Search Results are a very important Google feature for businesses. Any search term that your customers write into Google that includes phrases such as “near me”, will almost always result in a map of their local area with business names, addresses and details highlighted.

You’ll probably have noticed a very prominent part of this “local search result” – the star rating. If you’re reading this blog then you’re probably interested in finding out how to get star ratings in Google local search results, so let’s run over it.

A Google Local Search

Here’s a local search for “best dentist London” performed on a desktop computer. You can see that three dentists are featured prominently. We’ve probably all seen one of these “map packs” in our everyday searches for companies in our everyday searches. See our example below:

Google shows the “Best dentists in London”Here’s the same search on mobile but a bit closer to home in Southampton. The content is the same:

You’ll notice that whichever device is used, the star ratings and business description is there.

Which one of these dentists would you consider most? I’ll leave you to decide!

How can customers write a review on Google Local?

Customers can write reviews on your location by visiting your Google My Business page (they can get to that by searching your business name on Google). Something which looks like this:

A customer can tap on the stars to leave a star rating and they also have the option to adding in a comment like this:

Unless your customer is currently signed in to a Google account they can’t write a review.

Isn’t this too much effort?

As you can see, your customer has to jump through hoops before they’re able to leave a review. Google doesn’t make it very easy! Also, requires all potential reviewers to own a Google (Gmail) account so a review can be left. While this is a fantastic bit of friction to keep dishonest reviews away – it does add more difficulty when it comes to your everyday customers.

As you can probably appreciate, customers generally aren’t going to go out of their way to review you.  But stop! It’s not all bad news, because all you really need to do is ask them. If they’ve delivered great service then most of your super-happy customers will feel compelled to take the time and leave you a review.

Your might find that you collect fewer reviews on Google Local, even when you know you are giving great service. This makes Google reviews even more valuable due to the friction in place for collecting them, they are more trustworthy than a standard review elsewhere.

Conclusion

Collecting reviews from customers is hard. Asking customers in the right way and following it up with great customer service – customers will delightfully go out of their way to leave you a review. But it’s important to make that process of leaving a review as simple as it possibly can be so it can make life easy for the customer, without causing unnecessary confusion.

Start a Free Trial of Seen to see how we can help your business obtain more reviews from customers.

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