How to Get Higher Customer Ratings for Your Service-Based Business
Think of the last time you shopped around for a hairstylist, massage therapist, chiropractor, or any other service provider.
How did you conduct your research?
What factors played a part in your decision?
If you’re like most people, chances are customer ratings and reviews played a significant role in your path to purchase.
Our own research here at Genbook found that 93.9% of consumers would consult Google or Yelp reviews when considering a service provider, and 85.2% said they would consult customer ratings on social sites when deciding on a business.
Customers’ ratings are clearly a big deal for potential clients, which is why it’s worthwhile to invest the resources in boosting your business ratings and getting more reviews.
Let’s look at some of the ways that you can do that.
- Focus on Customer Satisfaction First
- Offer a Smooth Booking Experience
- Offer Excellent Services
- Communicate, Communicate, Communicate
- How to Get More Customer Ratings
- Set up Your Business Listings
- Collect Customer Ratings Post-Sale
- How to Use Customer Ratings & Reviews
- Displaying Them on Your Booking Page
- Use Social Media
- Display Them on Your Website
- Addressing Customer Ratings and Reviews
You can’t have high customer ratings with dissatisfied clients.
Before ramping up your initiatives around ratings and reviews, see to it that your client experience is top-notch. The exact steps for doing this depends on your company, but here are some ideas.
Offer a Smooth Booking Experience
Keeping your customer satisfied starts even before they walk into your place of business. The first step in impressing your clients (and ultimately getting high ratings) is to make sure that their booking experience is as smooth as possible.
One of the ways to do this is to offer online booking. Having a web portal for scheduling appointments enables your customers to book at any time of the day. A scheduling website also eliminates the need to play phone tag, thus minimizing the chances of miscommunication and errors.
So, if you’re still taking appointments manually, do yourself and your clients a favor and streamline the process using an online appointment scheduler like Genbook.
Offer Excellent Services
Always offer services that are a cut above the rest.
You can do this by continuously improving your skills and keeping up with the latest trends in your industry.
If you’re spa owner, keep an eye out on the wellness experiences that are making waves in your industry, then implement them in your location. Or if you’re a hairdresser, educate yourself on the top hair trends so you can keep your clients looking good all year round.
Trade groups such as The Professional Beauty Association and the Spa Industry Association offer tremendous resources on the latest trends and happenings in the industry. So, if you’re a member of a trade organization in your field, make it a point to tap into their knowledge base!
Communicate, Communicate, Communicate
Many customer service issues arise from simple miscommunications and misunderstandings. Prevent all that by being crystal clear with how you relay information to your clients.
Set expectations by creating clear-cut policies and disseminating the information to your customers.
Sending out reminders and confirmation messages — particularly when scheduling appointments — will also go a long way in keeping you and your clients on the same page.
Practice Good Client Etiquette
Basic etiquette such as being punctual and greeting customers should never be ignored. Every member of your team — from your receptionist to the service providers — should be respectful of how they interface with your clients.
It doesn’t take much effort, but it will go a long way in improving the customer experience and gaining positive reviews.
Already have clients who love you?
Now, let’s look at the ways that you can encourage them to rate and review your business online.
Set up Your Business Listings
Customer ratings and reviews live on business listings and review websites. People love to read and write reviews on sites like Google, Facebook, and Yelp, which is why it’s critical to have a strong presence on these websites.
If you haven’t done so yet, create and optimize your online listings by completing your business profile and including as many details as possible, including your physical address, phone number, website, hours of operation, and more.
You should also upload lots of photos and videos of your location. Have pictures of the inside and outside of your store, as well as photos of your team and yourself in action.
Manly & Sons Barber Co is one example of a service provider that takes care of its listing. Check out Manly’s Google business listing below, and you’ll see that it contains all the need-to-know details about the business, along with photos and customer reviews.
Once you have a great listing up and running, promote your business profile in your physical location using signage, stickers, table tents, and other collateral.
Here are some examples:
Having offline collateral allows you to clearly, but subtly encourage clients to leave ratings for your biz online.
Invite clients to rate and review your business
Research shows that 70% of consumers will review a product or service when asked, so getting more ratings for your business is just one quick conversation away,
The best time to mention ratings and reviews to your clients is when you’re wrapping up their appointment.
Let’s say you’re a hairdresser and you just finished styling someone’s hair. Before they leave, you could say something like:
I’m so glad you’re pleased with the results! The new cut makes you look younger. Since you’re so happy with my services, would you mind writing a review on Yelp [or Google/Facebook]? It would help out a ton!
Collect Customer Ratings Post-Sale
Another approach is to follow-up with your clients after their appointment. Consider sending a text or email encouraging them to write a review.
You can make this step easier by using an app or platform that automatically sends review requests to your clients.
Pro tip: Did you know that Genbook lets you collect reviews automatically? Simply enable the feature in your account, and the system by sending a reminder to your clients 3 days after their appointment. Here’s a sample review request email that you can use in your business.
If you already have a bunch of customer ratings and reviews, make an effort to promote them in order to drive awareness around your business.
There are several steps you can take to spotlight your reviews, including:
Displaying Them on Your Booking Page
Spotlight your top customer ratings and reviews on your scheduling portal. This is an excellent way to reinforce your great reputation and it instills confidence in potential customers.
NT Nail Spa does exactly that on its scheduling page. In addition to displaying the top customer reviews on the sidebar, NT Nail Spa has a “Reviews” tab so users can read the feedback from other customers.
Use Social Media
If you’re active on social media (and you totally should be), use customer reviews as content for your Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts.
Take note of your top ratings and reviews and post them proudly for your audience to see.
Here’s a great example from Lash & Brow Studio:
Display Them on Your Website
You should also showcase your customer ratings and reviews on your website. Depending on the layout of your site, you can choose to display them on your homepage, sidebar, or even have a dedicated page for all the kind words your customers are saying about your biz.
One of the reasons why people leave ratings and reviews is they want to be heard. This is particularly true about customers who send negative feedback. For this reason, it’s important to respond to negative customer reviews. Doing so tells the client — and prospective customers — that you value their input.
We discuss negative reviews in more detail here, and below are some quick tips on how to do it right:
- Respond quickly
- Apologize and acknowledge the issue
- Address the client by name
- Take things private
Positive reviews should also be addressed. If a client takes the time to rave about your services, show them your appreciation by responding to their comments. Taking this step makes your clients feel valued, which in turn strengthens their connection with your brand.
Customer Ratings Are Essential to Any Service-Based Business
It should go without saying, but customer ratings and reviews are super important for your service-based business. At Genbook, we understand this completely, which is why we give you the tools that can help you serve customers better and get higher ratings and reviews.