January 30, 2021

Why Ratings & Reviews are Important

Why you shouldn't skip rating your Uber driver and how to make the most out of customer reviews.

Cate Perino

When’s the last time you rated your Uber driver? Do you just give them a 5 star the next time you open the app since you’re late to dinner and need to order your next car? Do you search for the skip button in the bottom corner in light grey font? Or do you lovingly stare off as you recall your drive with Paul home from the grocery store, contemplate if the trouble finding each other was worthy of a star deduction, and ultimately give Paul a respectable 4 stars, type out your reasoning, and then get on with your afternoon? 

Honestly I’ve done all of these and it usually depends on my mood and how much of a rush I’m in. You would assume that in 2020, we all understand the importance of ratings and reviews. Why else would your inbox be filled with emails asking you to review your recent purchases? Sure, we all know they are important, but if we as reviewers and receivers understood the real weight they carry when it comes to customer experience and revenue generation, I think we would spend a little more time daydreaming about Paul than searching for the skip button. 

People love reviews 

Maybe we all don’t love writing reviews, but we sure do like reading them. 93% of consumers aged 35-54 ‘always’ read online reviews. What the reviews say is also nearly as important as having reviews in the first place. 91% of consumers are more likely to use a business if they have positive reviews, and 82% won’t use that business if they have negative reviews. 

Collecting consumer generated reviews is an integral part of any marketing strategy. Ratings and reviews rank as the second most important factor influencing purchasing decisions, just behind price. Think about how much time goes into pricing strategies, and then how much power that means Karen has on your business when she’s typing out a review on her iPad. According to a study at Harvard Business School, a 1 star increase on Yelp.com can increase sales by 5-9% in the short term

Benefits of reviews 

I think it’s clear now that reviews are important and can be very impactful on businesses big or small. Now, let’s look at how they can help (and hurt) you. Here are some major benefits of having good, honest reviews. 

1. Quicker, better informed purchase decisions

Good reviews encourage a quicker purchase because social proof drives purchases. Especially for larger purchases, reading lots of reviews and feeling sufficiently educated can help validate and speed up the purchase process. 

2. More visibility and traction

Each search engine has its own way of indexing and surfacing content, but having original content such as customer reviews helps these algorithms favor your brand. From implementing keywords to decreasing bounce rates, good reviews will help your SEO and website grow. 

3. Increased accountability and transparency 

Consumer reviews are a great way to build trust in your brand and business. Inviting customers to share honest reviews also holds your company accountable to sell quality products or services. A stranger hiding behind a screen isn’t worried about hurting your feelings, so you and potential customers can trust their opinion. 

4. Feedback and open communication with consumers 

Reviews are also a great way to collect constructive feedback from consumers. A negative review on your page does not mean you need to file for bankruptcy. Replying to negative reviews creates an open conversation with your customers, shows them and future readers that you care, and helps your business improve. 

A good review system is a win-win 

Creating a fair, well organized, and widely used review system is a win-win situation for consumers and your business. Both sides have a responsibility to make sure that reviews can be trustworthy and clear. Consumers need to make an effort to review and rate business honestly to ensure that averages are accurate and true. If there is a small pool of reviews, the average scores may be misleading or diluted. It is also up to the company to provide ample opportunities for customers to leave reviews whether through emails, social media, or website prompts. 

It is also important that the company ensure that their reviews are an accurate representation of their customer’s opinion. For example, an Uber drivers rating is known to be an average of a certain amount of the most recent rides that they have completed, as opposed to their entire cumulative history. Focusing on recent performance helps keep reviews accurate and reliable. The same strategy can be applied to products or services that have been updated or changed over time. Companies can check in on their feedback and confirm the accuracy of their reviews. 

Airbnb is another great example of a company that has a unique system in place to ensure that reviews are accurate. Airbnb breaks down property ratings into categories including overall experience, cleanliness, accuracy, value, communication, check-in, and location. The owner is also rated on their response rate and average response time. Breaking down reviews into specific categories based on the industry helps simplify the purchase decision. Specializing reviews for your company is also a great way to build your brand and identity, and show your consumers what you value most. 

The importance of reviews in the dental industry 

Whippy was created to give dental professionals and facilities the freedom to find work when and where they want. One issue that Whippy aims to solve is the lack of accountability that temporary hires and facilities have. Whippy allows dental professionals and facilities to build their online profile and reputation with personal information, reviews, and ratings.

The review system includes criteria unique to the dental industry that professionals and facilities will be rated on. This review system will ensure that dental professionals and facilities are held accountable and rewarded appropriately. You can invest time and effort into your profile, knowing it will benefit your chances of being matched for a shift. Now if your dental hygienist shows up 30 minutes late, you can report it to Whippy instead of complaining about it at the water cooler. 

Andrew Danganan, a dental hygienist near Long Beach, told Whippy how reviews and ratings are essential in this industry. He shared how, “it is important so that you can walk into a new office having confidence in those doctors and that office. You want to feel safe and know exactly where you are going.” Whippy has taken the time to build our technology and platform around the needs of those in the industry. With Whippy, you will know exactly who will greet you at the office, or who will walk into your office for that Monday morning shift. 

So next time Uber prompts you to leave a review, maybe now you will spend a few more precious seconds clicking on the appropriate star. Especially now that you know just how important ratings and reviews are. 

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