By Kahlid Saleh
How important are customer reviews to shoppers? Very important, as it turns out. The fact is, 90% of consumers read online reviews before visiting a business. Plus 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. This could be great news for RV and boat storage operators, especially those who offer Class A services, providing the best-in-care for their tenants.
For nearly 9-in-10 consumers, an online review is as important as a personal recommendation. Customers are likely to spend 31% more on a business with “excellent” reviews. For RV and boat storage operators, where building trust among tenants is pinnacle to long-term contracts, this stat is a biggie: 72% say that positive reviews make them trust a local business more.
Other interesting facts: 92% of users will use a local business if it has at least a four-star rating, and 72% of consumers will take action only after reading a positive review. Other key findings that will make toy storage operators take a good look at how to capitalize on online reviews: Reliability (27%), expertise (21%) and professionalism (18%) are the most important reputation traits for a local business.
Did you know that, on average, a one-star increase on Yelp leads to a 5% to 9% increase in a business’s revenue? At the same time, a single negative review can cost a business about 30 customers.
How To Deal With Negative Reviews
With 86% of people hesitating to purchase from a business that has negative online reviews, here’s some advice for dealing with a negative review:
- Respond Promptly
- Be real and admit your mistakes
- Correct inaccuracies
- Highlight your strengths
- Write like a person, not a corporation
- Take it offline
- Provide restitution if it’s warranted
- Ask loyal customers to share their experiences
- Be consistent
- Understand How Rating and Review Sites Work
Khalid Saleh is
Yelp’s five steps to getting your first review
Set yourself up for ‘RV and boat storage business success by getting your Yelp Business Page ready for your first review.
1. Complete Your Yelp Page
First claim your business on Yelp. Then update your business information to make it easy for potential customers to find you. Add info like your address, website, phone number, and hours of operation. The more detail you provide, the more likely you are to attract customers to your page and your business.
- Add photos
Images help tell your business’ story, serving as a digital storefront that shows potential customers what they can expect when they engage with you. It’s free and you can add as many photos as you like.
You don’t need a professional photo shoot to add photos to your Yelp Page either. Taking pictures on your smartphone is free, quick, and easy. Add a variety of images to help tell your business story, such as:
- Yourself and your staff
- Your product and/or services
- The interior and exterior of your business
- Your company vehicles
3. Fill out your “From this business” section
What makes your business unique? It’s the people and the story behind the business. The “From this business” section contains three parts:
- Specialities: Let customers know what you do exceptionally well
- History: Share the story of your business and how it all started
- Meet the owner: Say hi and tell your customers why you’re passionate about what you do
These details showcase what makes your business unique, and they’re also a great way to set expectations before customers come into your business.
4. Define your service offerings
Adding your service offerings let Yelp users know what industry-specific services you provide. Are you an HVAC company that does installations but not maintenance or repairs? Are you a hair salon that also does manicures and pedicures? By adding your service offerings, you’re more likely to get in front of customers that are looking for those specific goods or services.
If you’re a service-based business that travels to your clients, you should also add your service area to your page. This shows Yelp users how far you’re willing to travel for a job.
5. Spread the good news
Once you’ve started telling your business story on Yelp, let people know they can check you out. Include a link to your Yelp Business Page on your website, in your email signatures, or on electronic receipts. You can do this before you even get your first Yelp review.
Responding to reviews
Once the reviews start rolling in, be sure to respond. Responding to reviews is a great way to show off your customer service practices. It also gives you a public way to show potential customers how much you care.
Review quality over quantity
The number of reviews you receive as a business varies based on a number of factors, like your industry, the size of your business, the number of customers you serve, and how long you’ve been around.
For example, because we eat three times a day, it’s expected that restaurants will have an abundance of reviews. Meanwhile, we (hopefully) only need to call a plumber once in a blue moon, meaning there may not be as many reviews—but it’s the quality of the reviews that matter most.
Kahlid Saleh is CEO and co-founder of Invesp.
Your ticket to RV and boat storage success is waiting! Toy Storage Nation has just a few seats open for the Executive RV and Boat Storage Workshop, Sept. 29, 2023, in Reno. Here, you’ll learn the A-Z of the industry from industry experts as they cover marketing, feasibility, investing and developing RV and boat storage.