It’s pretty common knowledge that reputation is one of the major buying factors for consumers. Yet one of the major things a large majority of SEO companies neglect is helping clients achieve a 5 star rating. It’s one thing to rank a client at the top of the Serps, it’s another to maximize the benefits of that exposure by ensuring the clients brand has a 5 star review score integrated in with their search listings.By integrating a 5 star rating you will not only increase click through and conversion rates, but also improve the chance of referrals. One might argue a 5 star rated business in position 2 has greater visibility and click through potential than the business listed in position 1 with no star rating displayed. So the big question is how to acquire a 5 star rating with your Google listings. Google integrates the rating upon the receipt of a 5th review and if you follow these steps and you’ll be well on your way to doing so.

• Actively seek to acquire Google reviews from your customers and/or clients. It never hurts to ask a person you have good relations with who is happy with your service if they’d be willing to review your service via their Gmail account. A lot of people will have a Gmail and be more then willing to provide you a positive review whilst others might not have a Gmail account. However setting up a Gmail takes only 2 minutes so you can incentive people to give a review perhaps through gift cards, vouchers or a discount. Don’t go overboard to the extent of trying to garner a review off every client, but for a select few clients who are happy with your service definitely try and translate that happiness into a positive review.

• Don’t get friends or family to review your business nor ever pay for fake reviews. Whilst it’s true that if done in moderation you can probably get away with doing this questionable tactic, its still a risky move which could lead to Google simply removing the reviews or even deleting your Google+ page. Also, consumers are pretty savvy and if your reviews are made up of generic reviews with no substance like “abcxyz are the best at what they do” or “Gary grew my business by 1000%, i highly recommend him” there is a good chance someone might feel they aren’t genuine consumer reviews. Reviews should have some descriptive reference to the product or service they were happy with and not be too far over the top in it’s praise.

• Double up on your Facebook reviews. Just because of it’s sheer popularity you are probably much more likely to receive reviews via your Facebook business page. But there is nothing to stop you acting on your positive Facebook reviews and getting the person to also add their happy sentiments via a Google review too.

If you follow these steps sometime soon after receiving your 5th Google review Google will implement a star rating next your brand when displayed in search results. Obviously you need to be aware negative or mild reviews will lower your star rating. Google also has a review algorithm that checks the web for reviews your business has received on other platforms like Facebook, Yelp, Trip Advisor, Eatibility, Yellow Pages etc and considers those when applying a score to your business. Anything above a 4 star rating means your business is fairly reputable but your long term goal should be to obtain a 4.7+ star rating as this is the kind of score where consumer trust is achieved if your reviews appear genuine.

To finish we’ll show you an example of one of our clients who reaps the benefit of a business with fantastic reviews integrated with his brand.

When you search his branding Bethanies Jumping Castles

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And when you search his main keyword (2900 monthly searches) Jumping Castle Hire Sydney

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If you are currently paying for SEO but have not obtained a 5 star rating you may not be maximizing the additional exposure your business is receiving via organic search. Why not get in touch with one of our SEO consultants who can put together a campaign where obtaining a 5 star rating is just one of the many things we incorporate into our strategies.