As every SMB owner is painfully aware these days, local search marketing in this rapidly changing digital world is a whole new ballgame. Gone are the days when having a listing in the hardcopy Yellow Pages and a few other tactics in your marketing strategy would suffice. Nowadays you have to create and maintain a wide digital presence or you simply won’t be competitive. One of the most important things you should be doing is listing your business on multiple business review sites.

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Importance Of Business Review Listings

Why is this so important? For starters, listings on high-authority sites are essential to your SERP rankings.Google loves them. For another, racking up good reviews on such sites is good for business. And they are definitely having an impact, driven largely by the explosion in mobile device users. Consider the following statistics from a 2014 survey by marketing research outfit BrightLocal:

  • 88% of respondents say they use reviews to assess a local business
  • 72% said positive reviews increase trust in a business
  • 85% read 10 or more reviews before visiting a business or buying
  • 88% say they trust online reviews as much as they trust recommendations from family and friends.

Adding your business to review sites is a proven way to demonstrate trustworthiness to your customers. It allows you to respond to reviews, and it gives you valuable feedback about how your business is perceived. And they’re free. There’s just no good reason not to have a presence on these sites.

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Best Business Review Sites

You really can’t have too many listings out there, but you should start with the most important and influential sites, then move on to those that are business specific, like restaurant review sites, service industry sites, auto review sites, etc. Here are the five top sites that every type of business should be on.

  • Google My Business – Add all the details about your business here, including photos, contact info, hours, products and services, and the exact location on Google Maps, as well as reviews. Don’t forget to check for accuracy and verify yourself. The same goes for all these sites.
  • Yelp – By far the most used site for local businesses, essential for reaching mobile device users.
  • Yahoo Local – Yahoo still represents a significant share of the search market, so you really need to be there. It’s very much like Google My Business.
  • Manta – One of the newer review sites out there, it’s growing rapidly in popularity, and currently has over 30 million visitors each month.
  • Better Business Bureau – Every business should be a member, and good ratings here carry a lot of weight with consumers.

Take the time to list your business on review sites. Your customers will appreciate it, and you’ll appreciate the results.