The restrictions on who can leave reviews have been loosened by Google. Once the reviews required a Google+ account. Whether signed in to a Google+ account or not, reviews can be left now.

A Google account is still on the verge. However, a Google+ account is not. Conrad O’Connell first spotted this. He was employed by Serptests.com. Mike Blumenthal excessively covered this story.

Loosening of restrictions by Google

The loosening of restrictions by Google can potentially be a benefit to businesses. The reviews left in Google have actually increased in number since then. Actually, it is easier for the people outside to leave reviews in abundance now. In local search, overall review counts and scores are the top-ranking factors.

Features of an individual’s Google plus account

An individual’s Google plus account will have his or her first and last name. The names will be presented with the reviews further. This means that the reviews will not be anonymous anymore. However, they will mark a continued separation between Google plus and Google Search.

The bug in review sections

The update is finally here. The update was also successful in fixing a longstanding bug. This has been pointed out by Blumenthal. What the bug would do is it would not show the reviews properly. Especially those that were left using a mobile browser for businesses. These businesses were badly affected because they had no reviews, to begin with, after all.
Thus, a review-killer in the form of a bug was fixed effectively. Additionally, the method of leaving a review has become easier. Therefore, businesses will have more reviews now. A couple of major barriers have been removed by Google effectively. The reviews were almost killed by these entry barriers, and they would hardly appear, right? Had these barriers not been removed soon, many interested clients would have to leave the business pages without leaving a single review.

Advantages of online customer reviews for a business

  • The advertising is free

Every review posted by an online customer is a form of advertising. Firstly, notice that the name of the business and the product are widely exposed to the viewers. This increases consumer awareness regarding who you are and what are the products or services you provide.
Compared to the other media sources, online reviews cover several other businesses. Many small businesses that other media sources would ever be capable of covering get the required exposure. It is highly difficult to get this mass exposure through conventional marketing tactics, right?

  • The search engine results are improved

The results from the search engines are highly influenced by the reviews. Google, Yahoo, and Bing take into account how often the business name is mentioned in the reviews or with which frequency are the names of the organizations mentioned. Suppose the name of a business is mentioned a lot of times. The niche your business falls in when searched will provide a higher ranking. Businesses that are not mentioned in the reviews quite often fail to get the generosity of the search engines.

  • Recommendations by close people and friends

Peer recommendations are usually trusted by the consumers. In fact, not surprisingly, the recommendations are trusted more than promotions. Consumers highly trust recommendations from the people that they know. To be credible, many also consider online sources.

  • A survey on responders’ inclination towards peer recommendations

There was a Nielsen survey conducted in 2015. It involved over thirty thousand internet consumers from around fifty-eight countries. It was found that eight three percent of responders trusted peer recommendations. Again, seventy percent trusted the online reviews. Therefore, online reviews are a powerful tool for marketing.

More and more suggestions

Consumers may raise concerns or even suggest improvements for your business. To resolve a customer’s problem, this can be a good opportunity. Business practices can also be improved with this method. Let us look at the situation in a different way. Even if the customers would not have criticised your business practices online, they would have done so in front of other people anyway.

Wrapping Up

Online review sites provide the opportunity to develop a closer relationship with the consumers. From a range of consumers, you are likely to get to read reviews.

Consumers who raise concerns in the form of online reviews are better. This is because the negative reviews will be in front of you, and you can also reply to them. You have the opportunity here to undo the mess. Response in public is a lot better. There are ample suggestions from buyers as well. Hence online reviews are regarded as a free source for nicer business ideas.

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Pawan Sharma
Pawan Sharma

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