Many of you may have noticed that Facebook is changing it’s UI once again. What you may not have noticed is that the review section where customers go to leave businesses ratings and leave comments about their experiences is also changing – and we personally think it’s pretty genius. The change is this: Facebook users check into the places they visit, and within 24 hours of checking into that location, Facebook will send that user a notification asking them to review and share their experience about their visit to that location. Most Facebook users use the social networking platform on the daily, therefore the chances of them responding to this notification becomes very high.
But let’s rewind for a second… Facebook reviews have typically been treated on Facebook as an afterthought. Most consumers still trust sites like Google, Yelp, and more specified car sites such as Cars.com or DealerRater for online reviews from customers. Now, though, Facebook is integrating their reviews with a feature that is already much more prevalent that should worry Yelp and other review networks.
Visiting a car dealership can be stressful, exciting, and ultimately a very shareable experience for customers, so Facebook users often check in to show their friends what they are doing or ask advice. By checking in at your dealership, regardless of how they felt, they have a chance to tell their friends and the public how they felt, and there is a good chance that people will see it.
This should be very worrisome to Yelp for several reasons.
Yelp separates reviews into two sections; recommended and non-recommended. The recommended section is mainly reserved for customers who have achieved “Yelp Elite” status by reviewing lots of other businesses. Yelp then bases a business’ star rating off of the reviews in the recommended section, disregarding the ratings of those who also had legitimate experiences, but aren’t as active on Yelp.
Facebook is now changing the review landscape by helping customers paint a more accurate picture of what the average experience is like. Most reviews are written by only a very select few customers that include those who have the best or worst experiences. By only receiving reviews from these customers, review sites fail to take into account the large majority of experiences that customers have. The average user doesn’t leave a review simply because they forget and don’t have the motivation to create an account on yet another social media site just to leave a mediocre review.
Additionally on Facebook, users can also just leave a star rating, without leaving any comments. Unlike Yelp or Amazon, that have minimum character counts, a customer can simply leave a star rating and add or edit any comments later. Customers do not have to create a new account, achieve elite status, or do anything else to have their rating and review have the same weight as any other review.
For these reasons, it is beneficial to ensure that you have a strong reputation strategy that includes encouraging your customers to check-in to your business on Facebook, and leaving a positive review when you leave.
You may also want to ask yourself some questions such as, when someone leaves a negative review on Facebook, does anyone at your dealership respond? If so, did your response perhaps turn off potential members of the public?
When you leave your online reputation in the hands of #TeamFriendemic, our reputation management experts will not only monitor your reviews 24/7, but will also respond within 24 hours with a uniquely crafted response to every last review left for your business. Allow us the opportunity to help your star rating glisten and gleam! Contact us today!