Online reviews have become an essential element of customers’ online journeys, providing potential customers with the information they need to evaluate their options effectively. According to customer reviews research, reviews are five times more influential than TV advertisements and six times more effective than social media ads. This makes online review management an essential component of any successful customer acquisition and relationship management strategy. Below are five ways to earn and manage online reviews.
1. Drive a steady stream of online reviews
There are many places where consumers can write reviews about your bank. Your bank may start requesting reviews from consumers, perhaps on the top three review sites — Google, Facebook, and Yelp. Customers who have positive experiences don’t tend to think about posting an online review immediately, so it’s crucial to do everything you can to encourage them to leave feedback. For example, if a customer has a positive service experience with your bank, have the bank representative request permission to contact them via email or text message to leave an online review. It’s often best to request positive reviews from customers while their experience with your financial institution is still top of mind.
2. Respond to both positive feedback and negative reviews
Whether the review is positive or negative, make sure you craft a response to every piece of online feedback. Responses to reviews are seen and considered by prospects and customers. Responding is even more crucial for negative reviews. You can use the public response to recognize the issue, show that you hear them, and then provide the customer with the best way to get in contact with a representative to resolve anything further. It may often be ideal to offer taking the conversation offline, especially if resolving the issue requires discussing specifics of the customer’s account and services with the bank.
3. Focus on supporting local visibility
Most community banks and credit unions have multiple locations, and online reviews present a valuable opportunity to increase awareness of individual sites. Branch-based ratings can be successfully collected and managed using popular channels like the Google Business and Yelp platforms. Focus on adding reviews directly to your branch pages to build a more robust, localized experience for the communities.
4. Identify and remove fake reviews
Positive and negative reviews could hurt customer perception and your brand if they seem suspicious. Specific strategies such as offering an incentive to solicit positive online reviews may increase your chances of getting fake reviews or ones that generally lack quality. As a result, your bank must diligently monitor feedback and remove fake reviews even if they sound positive.
5. Analyze review data to extract actionable insights
Customer reviews are a great source of the ‘voice of the customer’ and offer tremendous insights into what customers like and dislike about your services and products. Text analytics solutions can analyze review data and turn them into invaluable insights. You can also use your competitors’ online reviews to derive insights. Find your competitors’ public product reviews online. Then upload the reviews to your text analytics product and analyze them. You can then compare the results against your analyzed feedback.
Online reviews provide banks and credit unions with valuable content — from testimonials and statistics — that can be used across various channels to create positive brand impressions to support further customer acquisitions. While actively managing reviews requires continuous commitment, it offers valuable opportunities to highlight positive experiences and mends potentially damaged relationships.
- Drive a steady stream of online reviews
- Respond to both positive feedback and negative reviews
- Focus on supporting local visibility
- Identify and remove fake reviews
- Analyze review data to extract actionable insights