01 May 2013

5+ User Review Websites Critical to Small Businesses

Thanks to the Internet, word-of-mouth reviews spread like wildfire – which can be both a good and bad thing for merchants.

Since consumers tend to trust the opinions of their peers more than anything else, user reviews are a very influential factor in a customer’s purchasing decision. In fact, a 2012 BrightLocal study reveals that 72 percent of survey respondents claim that they trust online reviews as much as they trust personal recommendations, while 52 percent said that positive reviews make them more likely to use a local business.

That said, it is important for businesses to keep an eye on their consumer reviews, as it will provide them with some insight of how customers perceive their business. Moreover, by monitoring review sites, businesses can learn what areas of their enterprise need improvement (customer service, product selection, cleanliness, etc.), as well as share their most favorable reviews with fans and followers. In order to do this, however, merchants must first know which user review websites are the most critical to their business. This will allow them to monitor the consumer feedback, and in some cases, even give a response to the reviews. To get you started, Website Magazine has compiled a list of five user review websites that are critical to small businesses, regardless of industry:

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