Search Engine Land recently dug into a recent study showing how increases in review score and responses correlated to more conversions. This seems like a no brainer to those that have been following closely and understand that Google rewards interacting with your GMB page, but it is important in that any time we show true data backing up our ranking factor assumptions, it underlines that reviews are an important investment for your business.
Growth in Average Score Means Growth in Conversion
The data shows that conversions peak for businesses when reaching a 4.9 average score, but that the biggest jump in conversions is when jumping from a 3.5 to 3.7 average score. I tend to push clients to aim to get over 4, as I feel this helps you show up more in “best” searches, but the data shows a big jump at the 3.7 threshold, giving a little more wiggle room.
Though there are other factors involved, the average score is very important. The number and frequency of reviews are also very important, and of course, everything is relative to your competitors, but setting goals to get over 3.7 is a good goalpost to aim for. I posted recently about how data showed that asking everyone for reviews is better than trying to weed out bad reviews ahead of time. The average score is still quite high and the number of reviews you gain is well worth it. Just keep asking.
Respond to Your Reviews
Now that you have gotten the review count up and the overall score increased, there is still work to do that also moves the dial. The study showed that when businesses responded to at least a third of their reviews, they saw an 80% growth in conversions. Don’t forget that reviews and responses are more opportunities to tell Google more about your business. It is always worthwhile to respond to your reviewer in a pleasant and informative way.
By working on your company’s review ranking and the response rate, you can make a true step forward in search presence and conversions. It is a fairly easy way to help move the needle. Just bake reviews into your process.