How to Reach More Local Pet Owners with Online Reviews

Online reviews build trust, increase visibility and customer retention

One of the main goals of any successful pet business is to stand out from the pack. The first step is grabbing a potential customer’s attention, and after is making the conversion from potential to actual customer. However, in today’s world, the markets are so saturated with choices, it has become an uphill battle to draw in new customers. 

The “paradox of choices”, AKA Hick’s Law, explains that when people are presented with more options, the time that they take to make a decision actually goes up rather than down. To successfully market to your pet parents, you have to empathize with the paralysis that they feel when trying to make a decision. If you can effectively address this issue, you will be able to win their business. 

With so many options, how can you make their decision easier? 

I’ll let you in on a secret. The more online reviews you have, the more visibility, customer trust, and retention you will have. 

 

  • More Online Reviews = More Visibility 

The goal of any pet business is to have customers and make money. Unfortunately, being the ‘best-kept secret’ is not going to help you gain more customers or make you more money. Being obscure is a fast track to becoming obsolete. 

Essentially, having a lot of online reviews is the first step into having more bodies in the door or more eyeballs on your website. The businesses with the most reviews and highest average ratings get more traffic digitally and physically. 

It becomes a cycle of having more reviews and gaining more visibility, which leads to more foot traffic and more reviews. The main question that you might be wondering is: how do I get that cycle started? Don’t worry, we’ll explain. 

  • Reviews Build Customer Trust

Speaking frankly, pet parents are picky and they no longer blindly trust businesses. You may be outside shouting from the roof that you’re the best in town, but if the sentiment isn’t being echoed by your customers, no one will believe you. Ratings and reviews have become a reputational shortcut, basically, they are the digital quality maker.

One statistic states that 85% of consumers will trust an online review as much as a personal recommendation from a family member or friend. 

  • Reviews Are Key to Customer Retention

Yes, bad reviews suck. But, such is life, they’re part of this process. Unfortunately, you can’t prevent every single bad review or experience, even if you try your very best to do so. But, you can control how you respond to them. If you respond to negative reviews, a customer is 16% more likely to revisit your business again. However, by not responding that number decreases by 37%. Keep in mind, not responding is a response. 

By not responding to a negative review, it shows your customers that you don’t care enough about their negative experience to even acknowledge it. Remember, that your responses aren’t just to that individual, you have a whole audience that will read them. There is an economic impact that depends on how you choose to engage. 

  • Constant Review Generation is Crucial 

Yes, online reviews are amazing to have but they also need to be current and relevant. Your review stream must be steady and continuous. 77% of customers say that reviews that are more than 90 days old are irrelevant. 

Google also rewards businesses that have a ‘high review velocity’. They are rewarding pet businesses that have more reviews, and that are reviewed more frequently by ranking them higher in search results. 

Would You Like Some Help?

With NextPaw technology, pet retailers can communicate with customers directly through SMS and respond to reviews from one dashboard, so being stressed about generating, responding, and requesting reviews has never been easier. Take a free tour here and see how your pet businesses can get more reviews, more customers, and more revenue. 

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