Did you know that local businesses with the best online reviews see 15% more annual revenue than their competitors? Ratings and reviews have become critical for both consumers and retailers alike as convenience store offerings continue to expand. Modern concept of word-of-mouth and sharing of personal experiences has become an immensely powerful tool for consumers.
According to a recent survey from Dimensional Research, an overwhelming 90% of respondents who recalled reading online reviews claimed that positive online reviews influenced buying decisions, while 86% said buying decisions were influenced by negative online reviews.
Here are three steps retailers can take to engage with their customers and drive traffic.
Listen. Your customers define your brand based on their experiences at your stations. By some estimates, the most successful brands on social media spend most their time just listening.
Respond. This one is easy: clean the dirty restroom; retrain the cashier; fix the broken pump. Responding to reviews by taking action is a great way to learn from and build goodwill with your most vocal customers.
Engage. Many companies spend months just listening and responding prior to engaging. Some choose never to engage. But when you're ready, acknowledging a negative review can often have a positive impact if done in a courteous and polite way. Retailers have the opportunity to win back a customer by offering a special incentive to a dissatisfied customer or drive loyalty by acknowledging those who have great things to say about your brand.
On January 9th, GasBuddy launched in app rating and reviews for all their users to see. This helpful tool lets the consumers know which stations to visit based on amenities and their ratings and reviews. Since the official launch of this feature, GasBuddy has collected hundreds of thousands of reviews and 84% of stations in the United States have reviews.
So what does this overwhelming amount of data mean for convenience store owners? How can fuel retailers use these ratings and reviews to their advantage?
- Reviews make it easy to stand out in search when consumers are looking for a place to fuel up and grab their morning coffee
- Gain insights that will help win, acquire, and retain
- Helps retailers benchmark and improve overall customer experience
This post is sponsored by GasBuddy