How to Handle a BAD Review:
If you are a business owner for any length of time then at some point in the life of your business you are going to get a Bad Review from someone- No one is perfect.
If you receive a negative review, remember that everything you say to that reviewer is out in the public for all to see online. That means you don’t want to do battle with that customer online.
The best way to handle these attention-seeking people is to take the discussion offline.
Simply let the customer know you heard them and then ask them to call you personally so you can resolve the matter.
Even if the person doesn’t call you back, anyone that sees the review discussion will at least know that you tried to rectify the situation.
That goes a long way to building trust with future customers.
Showing your clients SEO ROI is the subject of lengthy discussions and often raises ethical and credibility questions. Achieving high-performing organic search results is one of the holy grails of digital marketing. Ranking a site organically in the search results is the goal for many companies — especially for businesses that can’t afford high-cost pay-per-click ads.
We hear from many business owners who have been doing SEO for some time, and a lot of them use digital marketing agencies who specialize in search engine optimization and digital marketing. One of the biggest concerns these business owners have is that they just don’t know whether their SEO efforts and investments are paying off.
What does this mean if you provide SEO services? If your clients feel this way, then they are questioning the value of your services. So you should be prepared to answer questions that your clients may ask about how the SEO services you provide gives them real value and show the impact SEO has to their bottom line.
So how can you ensure that the work you’re doing can be turned into something tangible and valuable for your clients?
Provide Data That Matters to Your Client
The task of providing data that matters to your client is wonderfully captured by Joy Hawkins in one of her recent Moz articles. It’s so easy to simply forward your client tons of confusing reports and other analytics data in an attempt to overwhelm them with information so that your services appear more significant. But your client doesn’t really care about the details. They don’t really care about how many pages of their site are now being indexed by the various search engines or any minor search engine ranking position changes. They want to know what impact of all that data and all those numbers have on their business.
They want to know “how much additional traffic has been generated and is it valuable?”
Talk to your clients as business owners – not like SEO enthusiasts. Explain how the extra traffic that is generated because of your organic search ranking achievements impacts their site visitors. Tell them what that traffic is doing on their site that makes it all worthwhile. This is what they really want to hear.
Plan and Track Tangible Deliverables
This applies more in the early stages of SEO or a new SEO services relationship. We know that organic SEO takes time. You need to explain that to your clients so their expectations are realistic. The SEO efforts you take today could take months before they have a noticeable impact on the business. Clients need to be educated on this process.
So in the absence of hearty traffic generation-based results to share at the beginning of an SEO campaign, make sure that your client is aware of what work/tasks you’re doing. Explain how this SEO groundwork will help them in their quest for top industry ranking glory. Keep track of deliverables on a weekly or monthly basis so they can see work is taking place against their spend with you.
Did you get new backlinks this month and how many?
How many new pages of content or keyword-rich blog posts have you added to their site?
How many of the technical errors from the initial SEO audit have been cleared up?
Did you get your client listed on online business directories/citation sites? Which ones? Send them a screen shot of a few listings so they can see for themselves.
Have you optimized your client’s Google My Business (GMB) listing? Add a photo or video? Update the description?
Don’t be overly data heavy at this stage of the relationship. (You don’t want to overwhelm them with a bunch of technical SEO jargon.) Just show them that you are working towards the really juicy stuff.
Show Them What They Really Want to See
Your clients are business owners and not SEO lovers. After you’ve done your initial SEO tasks, make sure you keep track of rankings, backlinks, technical issues fixed, etc.
The real fun is when you can show your client that they’re ranking higher than some of their competitors on Google for important keywords. Sending them image screen shots of the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) is more impactful than a ranking report. You just don’t get the same excitement from reading an Excel ranking report. (However, BrightLocal’s ranking reports are very visual and clearly shows clients how their site is moving up the organic search rankings. Be sure to include a BrightLocal Ranking Report with your screen shots.)
BrightLocal Ranking Report
Return on investment is what your clients truly care about. How does your SEO work give them more customers, more leads and ultimately more sales?
If your client feels secure that what they’re spending with you is or will have a positive impact on their business, then they will feel justified allocating that budget to you. Appropriately managing how you report your progress and delivery of SEO services to your clients will ultimately define how they feel about your ability to deliver for them.
We’d Love to Hear Your Thoughts
How do you go about showing ROI from SEO services to your clients? Do you have any tips, techniques or strategies that really work? Share your thoughts with us in the comments.
We’re super excited to announce an extension to our integration with Google My Business (GMB), that allows BrightLocal users to link their accounts to GMB and import valuable Insights data into their reports.
With this update, you get a complete view of your GMB performance alongside all your other local search KPIs – all in one place!
Insights data can be viewed in your Location Dashboards, alongside your data for rankings, citations, reviews, Analytics and social media.
This new feature is included within ALL BrightLocal plans, and available at no additional cost.
How to import GMB Insights into your BrightLocal account
This brand new feature is live right now & available for you to start using. Watch this quick video to see how it looks & works:
To start viewing this data in our Location Dashboard, simply authorize BrightLocal to access your Google My Business profile and pull in the Insights data. Your GMB Insights can then be viewed on the Google My Business tab in Location Dashboards and within our Google Local Audit reports.
Authorize BrightLocal to access your GMB profile & view your GMB Insights data alongside all other Local Search KPIs
Google My Business Insights Data
Once imported, you’ll get access to the following Google My Business Insights:
Discover how searchers find your business on GMB, looking at both brand searches and product/service searches.
Get actionable insights on how searchers find your business
Find out how many Google users have viewed your GMB profile in main search results or Google Maps.
Discover how users are finding your GMB page
3. Customer Actions
After finding your business, what actions do users take to interact with your business? See data on the following actions:
Requesting driving directions
Calling you on the phone
Discover what actions users take to interact with your business
View GMB searches, views, actions, calls & other Insights within your BrightLocal account
4. Phone Calls
We all know that Phone Calls are an important touch point between local businesses and their customers. Now you can view how many calls were assisted (i.e. click-to-call) by your Google My Business profile. You can view the data displayed by either time of day or week.
Discover the most popular times for customers to call your business
All your local search KPIs in one place
With this update, you can view GMB performance alongside data from Google Analytics and other important local search KPIs in one place.
View GMB insights alongside all your local search KPIs in one place
What’s more, you can view all this data in an extended period of time to GMB. We display data for the last 18 months’, whilst the GMB dashboard only shows it in chart form for the last 3 months’! (N.B. if you export data from the GMB dashboard you can view up to 18 months’ also).
In addition, with BrightLocal you can view the most up to date Insights data, rather than the delayed Insights displayed in the GMB dashboard (3-4 day delay). So if you want to view Insights data from yesterday, or the day before, that’s all captured in your BrightLocal reports.
GMB dashboard displays Insights data for the past 3 months’; in BrightLocal you see 18 months’ of data!
There’s no additional cost to connect & view GMB data in your account, and it’s included in all plans.
GMB Update release schedule
This update is out right now. However, we’re rolling this update out in two phases. Currently, in order to import GMB Insight data, you’ll need to have a Google Local Audit report set up in your BrightLocal account. However this is set to change next week when we release phase 2, which will allow full integration without any existing reports.
Of course, the advantage of using our Google Local Audit tool alongside GMB Insights are many:
Automated auditing & tracking or your Google My Business page.
View important local ranking signals, including verification status, citations, citation authority, link count, domain authority & reviews & star rating.
Benchmark your business against top 10 ranked competitors.
Get alerted to any unauthorised changes in your NAP data, category selection, working hours, review count & star rating.
Great update! but what’s coming next?
If our latest GMB integration doesn’t satisfy your appetite for local SEO tool updates, then just take a look at what’s in the pipeline for summer / fall 2017…………..
Speed & data-accuracy improvements to CitationTracker
Overhaul & enhancements of Local SEO Check-up reports
Marketing Agency Directory offering enhanced & promoted profiles for BrightLocal Customers
We hope you find this update useful and that it helps you manage your GMB locations better!
As always, please let us know your thoughts & feedback in the comments below. Thank you!
How Moz Local works:
Enter your location data.
We push your listings to all the major data aggregators.
The search engines can find your location information, and new customers can find you!
In one easy step – and for less than ₤$9/month per listing – Moz Local ensures that your business listings are correct, consistent, and visible across the web.
OUR VERIFICATION AND DISTRIBUTION PARTNERS
6 business types that reap the most reward from local SEO
Does your business serve a local market? Columnist Pratik Dholakiya shares tips for 6 business types that can really benefit from local search engine optimization.
National — or even global — SEO was once the revolutionary way to gain visibility on the internet. Now, it has become incredibly expensive and brutally competitive. As a result, small businesses are turning to local SEO to increase their exposure to potential customers online.
So, what factors into an awesome local SEO strategy?
Truth is, there are many components that come into play. A great place to start is by signing up with Google My Business to create your free business listing on Google. Fill out your profile with as much information as you can to create a robust and enticing listing, including relevant keywords in your business description where appropriate. Customer reviews also play a big role in local search results, as does a well-optimized website with fresh and informative content.
Essentially, every company with a local target market can gain from local SEO; however, there are some business types for which local search can truly work wonders. Let’s take a look at six of the big ones.
1. Medical services
Businesses that provide medical services, such as doctor’s offices, dental practices and urgent care clinics, are perfect for local SEO.
Other than building a phenomenal website, there are many things these specialists can do to boost their rankings. First, they can publish high-value, informative content on their platforms. Google loves fresh, relevant material. Due to the highly specialized nature of these trades, providing insight through things like blog posts or how-to manuals is a great way to add value to the customer’s life while improving search rankings.
Here’s what happens when you search for dental practices in New York City:
Let’s look at the website for the second result, New York Dental Office.
In addition to the relevant keywords, take a look at the navigation bar. You’ll see it’s packed with useful content valuable to the casual visitor looking for a good provider. One of the most compelling pages is the “Smile Gallery,” which showcases before-and-after pictures of what their specialists do. They also have stellar blog and FAQ sections. These content-focused elements undoubtedly factor into their high search rankings in the local area.
In addition to providing top-notch content to the online community, professionals can also improve their SEO efforts by verifying and leveraging their name, address and contact information on local business directories, including general directories (like Yelp) and directories specific to the health vertical (like ZocDoc).
2. Law offices
Generally speaking, when people are in need of legal counsel, they are looking for an expert nearby. Therefore, appearing in the local searches is crucial for law firms.
There are a number of things a law practice can do to boost their local rankings. Creating a Google My Business page should be the first order of business. Next, their website needs to be properly constructed around relevant keywords. For instance, let’s say someone is looking for a divorce lawyer in the Los Angeles area.
Charles M. Green APLC’s website came up in the top three options in the search. In addition to a well-designed, intuitive interface, you’ll see the home page is optimized for relevant keywords in the area.
Another key factor for in the local searches is online reviews. Due to the unfortunate stigma surrounding lawyers, third-party validation is very important for potential clients. Therefore, law firms need to make a serious effort to generate client reviews on popular platforms like Google and Yelp. This can be a difference-maker that boosts local search visibility while building brand reputation.
3. Bars and restaurants
This is a big one. The hospitality business sees the most turnover of any industry. For instance, over 1 million restaurant locations opened in the United States alone within the last year. The main goal for any restaurant is to become a staple in the community. In order to achieve this status, it needs lots of returning customers.
Enter local SEO. Bars and restaurants typically operate on a local level and serve a geographically targeted market. When you type in “restaurant” into your mobile search, it is almost always followed by a suggested “near me.”
Customer reviews play a vital role in a bar or restaurant’s local SEO. As you probably noticed in the screen shot, the reviews are displayed quite prominently in the listings. In a recent BrightLocal survey, 60 percent of respondents said they had read online reviews for restaurants, the highest of any business category.
While a good content strategy is a major fuel for effective SEO in other industries, reviews take center stage in this line of work. They can make or break the local search rankings for a bar or restaurant.
When a pipe in your home bursts and you need immediate help, where is the first place you look?
In these cases, it’s not so much who helps you, but when someone can get to you and resolve your issues. Therefore, local SEO is a prime resource for plumbers or anyone who helps customers with quick problem-solving.
Plumbers are in a great position to increase their visibility through local SEO. First of all, their businesses live and die by local markets. Second, there is basically an unlimited supply of educational content about solutions to everyday problems that can be published on their websites to boost rankings.
Bill Howe is a Google-famous San Diego area plumber. With the help of valuable content such as this, his business shows up on the first page for a bunch of relevant local keywords.
Reviews can also help with local rankings. As plumbing services are in high demand, customers are looking for a trusted skill set that will produce reliable results. Unfortunately, it can be somewhat of a challenge to get clientele to generate online reviews in this industry. Therefore, going the extra mile to encourage feedback can do a lot to put plumbers ahead of competitors in local rankings.
Specialists in these fields can see quick results if they put the time and determination into a local SEO strategy.
5. Pet services
Pet services are highly specialized and almost exclusively in demand at a local level. Typically sought-out keywords in this area are for things like grooming, pet sitting, walking, training, supplies and veterinarians.
Additionally, the potential for valuable content is practically limitless, and reviews are incredibly important. Say you want to find a grooming service for Bruno:
Here is the first website that shows up in the local pack:
You’ll see they have the most reviews in the area and provide content on trending matters.
In general, owners want the very best for their pets. Services must do everything they can to produce Grade A content while encouraging reviews in order to succeed in the local search rankings.
6. Real Estate
Local SEO and real estate services go hand-in-hand. However, due to the emergence of platforms like Zillow and Trulia, the smaller local real estate agents need a hyper-local strategy to gain the proper search exposure. (Tip- Niche to named neighborhoods. Here in Virginia beach a few are….
and Bay side or Oceanfront
The bigger platforms do broad keyword searches extremely well. For instance, if an agent tries to rank for terms like “homes for sale,” they are unfortunately going to be out of luck.
The key to success for real estate agents lies in creating pages targeting specific local markets, which can appear for long-tail keyword searches around home buying. In these pages, the goal is to get as granular as possible. This means doing things like breaking it down to the names of the smallest neighborhoods in the area.
The real value, of course, lies in the content. This is where skilled agents can really dive in and go above and beyond to provide value for the user.
This realtor located in southern California provides extremely detailed and informative listings for neighborhoods in the area. If you read the content, you’ll see he went in depth with things like history of the area, landmarks, community events and the local school system. The copy also utilizes relevant keywords such as “luxury real estate” and “exclusive communities,” which can help this page rank for long-tail search queries.
Localized content like this is perfect for showcasing a level of expertise and defining a niche. This is simply an area where the bigger platforms cannot compete and the smaller agents can thrive.
I’ve been in digital marketing for a long time. There are a lot of other industries besides the ones mentioned here that stand to benefit from local SEO. In today’s digital landscape, going local can be the cheaper and more effective option.
Just remember, SEO is a marathon. It might take weeks (or even months) to see the results you want. You can always be proactive in your efforts by producing great content and providing service that will result in a positive review.
Some opinions expressed in this article may be those of a guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.