Everyone is fighting for space in the beloved “Google Snack Pack.” For those who don’t know that is the industry term for the highly coveted top three spots in the Google Maps listing for certain keywords geographically targeted. For small businesses and companies that have a fairly new online presence competing for that placement seems like a huge, uphill battle. As you research how to compete for those positions you are undoubtedly going to learn that getting online reviews is one of the many ways that you can boost your ranking in the maps section. After having found this knowledge it is only human nature to think “ok awesome, I will just get my family and friends to post some positive reviews for me.” We don’t blame you for thinking this way and to be honest, we have seen many local SEO companies offer these same tactics as a solution.
GET YOUR ONLINE REVIEWS IN THE HONEST AND NATURAL WAY
Google recently issued warnings to business owners that reviews deemed as fake will be taken down. Companies with repeated infractions may even be liable to a manual drop in their rankings due to abuse of the review system. Keep your reviews natural and real. While it is fine to encourage satisfied customers to share their experience online you want to avoid any potential warning flags as you gain reviews. We recommend that you keep things at a nice even pace. Although you cannot control when and who reviews your business if you are encouraging reviews don’t get too many too quickly. It is far better to get 2-3 reviews a week than 10 in one day and no reviews for the rest of the week. These spikes in reviews are likely to trigger a warning in Google’s review system as these patterns appear unnatural.
ONLY HAVE REAL CUSTOMERS REVIEW YOUR BUSINESS
The simplest way you can rest assured that your maps listing will stay in good standing with Google is to only have real customers review your business online. We don’t want to alarm you but, there is times where companies get sued over posting fake reviews about their goods and services. Claims of the allegations include false advertising as people are lead to believe that the services rendered are of a higher quality than they actually are. The best advice we can give is to speak with a local search expert in order to determine if your current online strategy is in line with what search engines are looking for. We invite you to post any questions, concerns, or advice below because sharing knowledge helps keep the internet awesome.