No doubt you’ve used online reviews to make shopping and dining choices before. Consumers similarly beeline to the Internet when they start thinking about buying or selling, so agents should always be thinking about how to get more reviews.
An impressive 86% of consumers read online reviews before choosing a business, and 91% trust online reviews as much as referrals from friends. A recent J.D. Power study found that first-time buyers and sellers actually valued reputation — read: online reviews — more than the referrals they got.
Google reviews have quickly become the most trusted testimonials online, and it’s for good reason: Google is eponymous with Internet searches, and it places a premium on reviews when it comes to search results rankings.
Agents who take Google reviews seriously reap other rewards from the world’s biggest search engine.
Here’s why — and how — to optimize your reputation on Google:
1. Agents with just one review see double the search traffic.
Homesnap is one of Google’s featured real estate partners, and we manage more than 13,000 Google business profiles through our premium Homesnap Pro+ membership.
Our data shows real estate agents with just one review appear in 250% more Google searches. That’s 250% more opportunities for consumers to find you online, and that’s a huge deal.
This also holds true for profile views and actions — those include calls, texts and website visits. Just one review boosts your profile views by 71%, and drives 122% more people to take action and reach out to you.
2. Better than one review? More reviews. (And recent ones!)
One review matters, but getting three or more will make an even bigger difference. So will keeping them up to date. You want to make sure you get at least one review every 30 days so Google sees you’re active.
Create a routine around asking new clients for a Google review. Homesnap Pro+ makes this easy, too. Google’s algorithms might ultimately be a mystery, but the results don’t lie: We’ve seen enough to know that fresh content matters.
3. Not sure how to get more reviews? Ask your friends!
We’d put this on a billboard if we could: Clients aren’t the only ones who can write reviews! Google knows the point of reviews is to inspire trust. So it’s more than okay to ask anyone who can vouch for your character to give you a review. Friends, family, agents you’ve worked with or done business with, neighbors, your boss, lenders, accountants … anyone who knows you can be a great reviewer.
Homesnap Pro+ helps with this, too. But don’t take our word for it when you can get real estate agent testimonials! Here’s what Homesnap Pro+ agent Chad Tyler has to say:
“It’s pretty easy… Through the app, I can simply just send an invitation to give me a review. ”Homesnap Pro+ Agent Chad Tyler
4. You don’t have to be a high-production agent to reap the benefits of reviews.
When we dug into the numbers, we saw huge spikes in traffic and metrics for agents who had Google reviews. This was regardless of transaction history.
Reviews aren’t the only factor in driving Google search results, but they are the top factor. So, step one, get your Google business profile verified with Homesnap Pro+ if you haven’t already. We’ll get it up and running quickly so you can move onto step two: Get reviews, and keep them coming!
5. Mediocre reviews aren’t the end of the world, but you need to address them.
Misunderstandings happen! Any time you get a review that is less than stellar, make sure you reply. Ignoring a review only sends up red flags for Google, as well as prospects. It might make you look unresponsive, whereas a polite and thoughtful reply can put potential clients at ease.
Another perk of Homesnap Pro+ is that agents get help in replying to negative reviews.
You can get continued wisdom about Google and how to appear in more searches when you sign up for Homesnap Pro+. We’ll verify your Google Business Profile and update it regularly — remember, we’re a Google featured partner and have unmatched insight into profile optimization.
We’re the only real estate company that partners with Google and your MLS to make this happen, so check out Homesnap Pro+ if you haven’t signed up yet.