We have spoken to quite a few painting contractors who have told us that they don’t like to bother their customers by asking for reviews. Is that feeling justified? Do homeowners dislike being asked for reviews?
Thankfully the good people at Moz recently conducted a survey of 1,300 consumers as part of their Impact of Local Business Reviews on Consumer Behavior Report. The survey asked a number of really good questions about how often consumers are asked by local businesses to leave reviews and how often they do so when asked.
Before we dig into the results of those questions, I want to share a word of warning. You should not be providing rewards (money, discounts, etc.) to people for giving you reviews. This is unethical at best and could qualify as illegal.
There was a question in the survey, “Has a business offered you money, discounts, or gifts in exchange for writing a review?” 40% of the respondents said yes, a business has offered them money, discounts or gifts. I urge you to not do this or try to manipulate your reviews in any way. It only takes one “fake” or “bought” review to completely destroy your credibility.
Now, onto the questions…
Has a local business asked you directly for a review in the past 5 years?
61% of the survey participants said that they had received at least one direct request for a review during the past five years. That leaves 39% of consumers who were not asked a single time by a local business for a review over the past five years. To me, that’s a lot of missed opportunities. Think about how many local businesses those 500+ people did business with over five years with not a single one of those businesses asking them for a review.
If you have been consistently asking your happy customers for reviews, then you have a substantial advantage over your competitors. If you haven’t been asking for reviews, you can start today and still be ahead of most of your competitors.
When asked by a business to leave a review, how often do you do so?
As you can see on this chart, it is very much worth your time and effort to ask for reviews. More than 50% of consumers will “always” or “usually” leave a review when asked to do so. On top of that, 34% will “sometimes” leave a review when asked to do so by a business. The quick summary – when you ask your customers to post a review for your business, most of them will do so.
How do you prefer to be asked for local business reviews?
Email is the preferred method at 53%, with being asked in person coming in second with 46%. Text comes in third at 29%. It is important to note that this is a “select all that apply” question.
Of course, the better you know your customer, the better you can modify your approach to fit their preference. If you’ve been using text to communicate with a homeowner, there is a high likelihood that they are going to be good with a text request for a review. We encourage our customers to ask for a review during the final walkaround, which would work well for the 46% of people who prefer to be asked in person.
Why do you write local business reviews?
This question relates directly to the title of this blog – “Do homeowners dislike being asked for reviews?” Many painting contractors have told us that they don’t like to ask their happy customers for reviews because they don’t want to bother them. However, as seen in the answer to this question, 73% of consumers said they write local business reviews “To let others know my experience.” These consumers see providing reviews as part of their civic responsibility. It is important to them to be able to guide others to good businesses and away from bad ones.
If you have provided great work and delivered excellent service to a customer and you ask them for a review, you are helping them fulfill their mission to let others know of a good quality painting contractor that they can trust. Consumers are not just writing a good review for you, they are writing a good review to help other homeowners in the area identify a trustworthy and dependable painting contractor for their home painting project.
If you’ve hesitated in the past or been resistant to ask for reviews, I hope that seeing the results of this survey question will encourage you to start asking your happy customers more consistently.
Our Integrated Reviews platform helps our customers get more online reviews. To learn how we can help do that for your painting business, call us at 919-424-6121 or schedule a meeting with us at a time that’s convenient for you!