Businesses these days are at the mercy of their customers who have the power to make or break their chances of success thanks to the advent of online third-party reviews. It’s worth initially pointing out that the power of word-of-mouth marketing has been a crucial feature in the growth of any business for hundreds of years.
Before the internet, a customer may have raved about a loaf of bread they bought which would have encouraged their friends to purchase from the same baker. The difference now, thanks to online third-party reviews of businesses, is that satisfied or disgruntled customers can relay their experience to those a lot further afield than just their immediate acquaintances. The concept, albeit now with a far wider audience, has remained the same for centuries and reinforces the inescapable truth that businesses live and die by what customers say about them.
Incredibly, word of mouth and online reviews drive $6 trillion in yearly global spending and are responsible for 13% of all sales. If you’ve ever felt helpless and ripped off as a consumer, then take solace in those astonishing numbers. They reveal how much power customers ultimately have should they wish to speak up. Similarly, if you’re a business owner and have ever felt like cutting a corner, then let those stats serve as a stark reminder of the perils of doing so and how much it might affect your growth strategy.
With this being the case, you can see how important it has become for businesses to gain reviews from these websites to earn the trust of their clients. From banking to entertainment, every business is in the same boat thanks to online reviews.
Here we look at three different industries and how reviews might affect them.
We’ve all been there. Your online shopping cart is full of items at an unbelievable price, but before you enter your CVV number and pull the trigger, you type in the business name and see if it is too good to be true. In an instant, you have a list of damning reviews that confirm your suspicions with customers complaining about the poor quality of the clothes, unreliable shipping dates, and a non-existent refund policy.
Simply put, there is no way you are now prepared to click purchase after what fellow customers have said. You heed their advice and end up shopping at another business that fares a lot better on the likes of Trustpilot.
These days, everyone sees themselves as somewhat of a foodie even if they’re under the unshakable impression that foie gras is in fact a holiday town in France. In this sense, you have a bit more sympathy for restaurant owners when it comes to third-party reviews. Taste is subjective and not always universally given.
This, however, is where the right to reply on sites like Tripadvisor can save a business and even promote it, as discerning customers can often cut through the noise after reading a balanced reply to an unreasonable review. Engagement in third-party website reviews from business owners puts a customer’s mind at ease, which goes to show how important accountability is, regardless of whether the assessment has been positive or negative.
The most sought-after websites for reliable reviews nowadays focus on online sportsbooks, given how many options are now available. The need for honest and transparent reviews is particularly important to customers in this industry. Thankfully, customers can find such reviews, such as this Betway review, which goes into detail about how seriously the bookmaker takes cricket betting.
Cricket draws 93% of all sports viewers in India, a country with a population of over 1.4 billion people. These punters will want the best deal with a bookmaker when signing up and this review site lets them know that those signing up with Betway can get a deposit bonus of up to ₹2500.
With so much at stake, betting companies looking to gain a foothold in emerging markets can’t afford to get it wrong. These types of reviews will either open the door for them or close it if their offerings aren’t up to standard.
Online sportsbooks, like retail and restaurant businesses, require the powers that be to tune into these third-party reviews in order to keep their fingers on the pulse. Some will argue that these websites are a godsend and others, a curse. The truth is that consumers have benefited enormously since their arrival and so have business owners who don’t make it a habit of trying to pull the wool over their customers’ eyes.