Small businesses, especially a local business, know the kind of business value that star reviews on social media can drive for their business. Positive reviews are just as effective as word-of-mouth in the digital marketing and SEO space for attracting consumers. In fact, 72% of customers won’t take action on a purchase until they read reviews.
Google is one such place where consumers go to verify the quality of a business’ service. A company name that ranks higher on the “Map” results boasts a more trustworthy online presence. Why? Because they have an army of happy customers to back their business reviews.
A common misconception is that a Gmail account is a must to post and interact with these reviews however, this is not the case.
With four simple steps, potential customers regardless of their email domain can post local reviews on the Google Maps app and boost your business page online.
Steps to Writing a Google Review Without a Gmail Account
- Step One: Open Google Maps and search the business name
- Step Two: Rate and write a review
- Step Three: Connect the email of your preference
- Step Four: Share relevant images and hit publish
Step One: Open Google Maps and Search the Business Name
Whether your users are on their laptop or computer or using their mobile devices, Google Maps is an easy way to do a local search and scan for negative reviews.
On the browser, head over to Google and then navigate to Maps in the dropdown list where you’ll see popular applications like Google Drive.
If you’re on an Android mobile device, Google Maps will be part of your default apps and accessible with one click. If you can’t find it, search and download it via the Google Play store or App Store! It’s as simple as that.
Next, search for the business name and click it.
Pictured below is an example of a local plumbing store. As you can see, the map provides the details of the business name, address, opening times, and other critical information. Note that the primary information highlighted right below the name is the average rating and the number of total reviews received.
This is one of the first things consumers see when they run a business through a search engine, whether it be a plumbing or roofing store or even a general contracting. Great reviews stand out and drive business value, even more so for small business owners.
Pro-tip: get your business set up on Google My Business (GMB) to increase your visibility on map searches. Remember, online reviews and map searches are interlinked. One bad review can tank your reputation while a great review can boost your overall SEO ranking.
Step Two: Rate and Write a Review
Navigate to the starred review section and you’ll see five empty stars on display, waiting to be filled to your heart’s content.
Assign a rating that fits the service you received after which, you have the option of elaborating on your customer experience if you so wish.
As you may have noticed, you may have reached this step without a single barrier stopping you from rating and filling out your own review. This may be the case if you already have a non-Gmail address associated with your Maps account.
If not, you may get a prompt through a pop-up box to sign in.
This is where the misconception originates that you require a Gmail account to proceed. But don’t worry! Keep reading to discover the next step and debunk the myth that a Gmail account is a necessity for a Google review.
Step Three: Connect the Email of Your Preference
If you’re still looming over that seemingly intimidating pop-up asking you to sign in, don’t worry. Go ahead and click “Create account.”
But instead of creating a Google account, you’ll see another handy alternative on the next page.
Click the option: “Use my current email address instead” and you’re good to go!
You will then get redirected back to the reviews page and be free to proceed with your Google review no matter the email ID you have.
That wasn’t so complicated, was it? Then, why are consumers confused?
As you can see, the feature to stick to your current email ID is less than obvious, hidden behind that obscure “Create account” option. Hence, this step is often skipped by most consumers who don’t have their email ID linked to their use of Google related apps. The moment they see the pop-up, they assume they can’t leave a review.
That’s why this step is a neat little trick to educate your customers on.
Step Four: Share Relevant Images and Hit Publish!
As pictured in Step Two, you are free to add and share relevant images that provide more detail and context to your review.
This can help drive the purchases of other customers viewing online reviews who wish to verify and confirm whether the star rating is worthy of the end result delivered. The wise consumer would be aware of the risk of fake reviews and may look for visual affirmation.
After uploading the pictures you want, hit publish!
Within seconds, the review will be available online and can be viewed by other customers around the world – regardless of whether or not you have a Gmail account.
Accumulating star reviews for your business can be a game-changing move. Did you know that a product having five or more reviews online can boost conversion rates by 270%?
Customers that leave a google review help elevate your brand image and communicate the quality of your customer service on a global and highly accessible platform. So what are you waiting for?
Share your review link, start educating happy customers on how they can put in a good word on Google, and get the ball rolling for your business.