How many times have you had a client use your home improvement services because a friend referred them to you?
Referrals are great; you get free marketing for your business and you have a whole new list of clients and prospects.
But, have you thought about online reviews and your review marketing strategy lately?
Since everything is going digital, more people are researching online reviews of home remodeling companies. While references or word-of-mouth marketing can help you reach more clients, you can’t ignore your online reviews.
In this blog post, we’re going to compare both referrals and online reviews for your home remodeling business to help you understand why you need a solid review marketing plan to land more referrals.
Referrals Help Clients Trust Your Home Improvement Business
If there’s one thing that referrals and word-of-mouth do well, it’s that they create immediate trust with your business.
Think about it: we only recommend businesses to friends and family if we were blown away by the service or product. And, if we had a negative experience somewhere, we're also going to let our close ones know to stay away.
When a client gets referred to you, they come to you with that automatic trust that says, “you did a great job on my friend’s kitchen remodel, and I want you to remodel my home.”
It’s Easier to Find a Remodeling Contractor From Online Reviews
However, while referrals can create that immediate trust, there’s no guarantee that one of your satisfied clients will refer a family member or friend, or that any of their connections even need home remodeling services.
Online reviews, on the other hand, are much more prominent and handy because they come from all your different clients to serve anyone who may be interested in your business.
It’s obvious that when your clients leave you a review, they want you to know how satisfied or disappointed they were with their remodeling contractor or the results of their home improvement project.
But, ultimately, clients leave reviews because they genuinely want to encourage or discourage others from doing business with you just as much as they would let their family and friends know.
Online Reviews Are Just as Trustworthy as Referrals
Did you know that 85 percent of people trust reviews as much as personal recommendations?
Don’t get me wrong; referrals and personal recommendations are great ways for your clients to learn about your home improvement business.
However, it’s more common for a client to find out about your business from a review than a direct referral, which is one of the main reasons why clients trust reviews.
There are two other reasons why people trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations: 1. to get transparency from businesses and 2. social proof.
Since home remodeling is expensive and time-consuming, the last thing a client wants to do is spend money on a home remodeling business that is vague about its services, prices or the turnaround time.
So, clients are looking at online reviews to gain that additional information from previous clients to learn more about the business.
But, they also want to see what others are saying to validate their own thoughts and actions. This type of psychology is called social proof, and if your clients are saying great things about you, prospects who are already interested may work with you because of this.
We understand that referrals are one of the most important things for the success of home remodeling businesses and contractors. But, with 97 percent of people reading online reviews to help make a purchase decision, you can't put off your review marketing strategy.
Additionally, by having plenty of positive online reviews you can generate new leads, and these new clients may refer you to their family or friends who need your services.
In other words, reviews and referrals go hand-in-hand. Referrals can lead to reviews, and reviews can lead to referrals.
So, if you haven't already, you should start focusing on your review marketing strategy to land more referrals and, ultimately, more jobs. And, if you want to learn more, we have a home improvement marketing strategy that can work for you!
For more information on review marketing, check out these resources: