The stats say that Fire & Security Reviews play a huge role in getting new business.
- 86% of consumers read reviews for local businesses.
- 84% of people trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation.
- Consumers read an average of 10 online reviews before feeling able to trust a local business.
- 57% of consumers will only use a business if it has 4 or more stars.
- 89% of consumers read businesses’ responses to reviews.
Bright Local Dec 2018
So that’s WHY you need more reviews.
But if you look at the Google My Business map listing for most Fire & Security companies, many of them have less than 5 reviews.
Your Google My Business map listing is a priceless piece of real estate, especially on mobile phones. If Google thinks your map merits a position in her top three for a search term like security systems in [your town], it’s your best chance of getting someone to make an enquiry about that service.
Having lots of positive 5 star reviews can be the difference between someone choosing you or choosing someone else.
Sadly, it’s really hard to accumulate reviews for Fire & Security companies.
Unless you make a concerted effort to get them.
You have to ask!
Don’t just HOPE that your customers will go to the trouble of leaving a review for YOU. Unless, of course, they have had a bad experience. In which case, you will know about it pretty quickly.
The Dos and Don’ts of Encouraging Customers To Leave Reviews
Incentivising Fire & Security reviews
Nononononono! You cannot pay someone to leave you feedback. Google views this as a bribe. And, if they find out, you could lose all your reviews.
And they will find out. It only needs some smartass to leave a review that says: “I’m only leaving a 5 star review because I was offered a £25 gift token if I did…“
This includes offers to donate to charity in return for reviews! It may sound like a great way to promote interest in the local community and get the double whammy of a review. But, in Google’s eyes, it’s still a ‘consideration’. An incentive to make you do something you might not otherwise have done. And be more favourable than your actual performance deserved.
Oh, and please don’t ask your friends to leave you 5* reviews when they haven’t actually had an alarm system installed by you.
Ask for your Fire & Security review at the right time
Don’t just leave a card behind. Once you are gone, your review is just one of many things demanding your customer’s attention.
Think about when you buy from Amazon. You always get an email from the manufacturer asking for a review. How many times do you do that?
Ask at the point of highest satisfaction. Hopefully that is when your installer has put away the hoover and has talked the customer through how to use the new alarm system or CCTV cameras.
Mrs Smith, Thank you for choosing [name of your Fire & Security company]. Word of mouth is really important to us. We would love it if you would leave a review for us. My boss loves them and puts them on the website straightaway. But it also really helps me in my employee review if customers have said nice things.
This makes the relationship with the guy actually in Mrs Smith’s house NOT the Fire & Security company. He has helped her by doing a good job and not leaving a mess. She is much more likely to help him in return.
Make it easy for happy consumers to review their new alarm system
Give the customer options – but not too many! It’s hard to leave Google reviews. Even if you give your customer a link to your maplisting, they still have to log in. It’s frustrating. And extra work. So they are less likely to make it happen.
Give a link to where they can review you on Facebook as well – many people are permanently logged in to that platform.
And what about a local review company like Checkatrade. That gives your customer the option of leaving a testimonial via a postcard or go online to do it.
A link to your reviews from both Facebook and Checkatrade is often included as part of your GMB map listing. If you can’t get people to review you on Google, these are two very useful substitutes.
Review us, review us, review us
The Fire & Security company we know that has the most reviews asks more than once.
The installer asks for the review as mentioned above.
He also leaves a review postcard.
And a few weeks later, customer service follows up with a phone call. Did the customer have a good experience?
Yes? It really helps us if you can give us a review on our Google Map listing. Would you like me to talk you through how to do that?
No? Is there anything we can do to improve things?
Hell, I’ve even seen a review from someone who called a Fire & Security company asking to book a site survey!!! If you’re not convinced of the power of asking, remember, no one would do that without being asked! But ALL 5* REVIEWS COUNT!
How to head off bad reviews
40% of bad reviews are because of expectations vs delivery. Dissatisfaction occurs when the customer didn’t understand something.
Manage expectations so that no one is upset because they feel they didn’t get what they paid for.
If a customer has higher expectations than your delivery can provide, you need to raise or lower one of these. Either will make a satisfied customer.
Whether you have been contracted to install or repair a system, make sure that the customer is fixed as well.
At the end of any job, you could ask if there was anything you could have done better or anything that was done wrong. It’s better for the customer to rant at your installer in person rather than on the internet. And you have a chance to put things right.
But supposing you get feedback throughout the job rather than waiting until the end. A roofing guy we know in the US always tasks one person on his team with keeping the customer happy throughout the duration of the alarm installation. If you can fix things at the time – or even before the customer starts to grumble – you’re much more likely to get that 5* review.
How to deal with a bad review of your installation
You should always respond to people who take the time to leave you a review on your Google map listing or Facebook Business page. Good or bad.
Thank you for leaving us a review. We are very pleased that you are happy with your new alarm system.
If it’s bad, you need to acknowledge that they are not happy. You should also give them your name and the number of your direct line so you can get this matter resolved from them.
If it’s a bad review from a customer that you do not recognise, it could be a fake from a competitor. Find out more about dealing with that here.
If it’s not the 5 star review you wanted, we have seen Fire & Security customer service representatives
thank you for your 3 star review of our security camera installation. Is there a way we could improve things so you can upgrade your review to 5 stars?
This is not necessarily something that I would recommend. You could run the risk of Google investigating whether you are incentivising a better review than you were previously given.
Obviously you do not want negative reviews.
No one does.
BUT! A bad review does not have to be bad news.
In fact, you can learn a lot from 1-star reviews… Analyse them. They usually break into two or three key objections. Now you can turn what you have learned into 10x more compelling, objection-stomping, expectation-managing website and email copy.
No review ‘gating’
Jo, what on earth is gating?
It’s where you email your Fire & Security customers to ask a leading question:
are you happy with the installation;
are you satisfied with the maintenance contract.
And then treat the answers differently, depending on whether they say yes or no.
If they say ‘no’, you give them a link to speak to your customer service department.
But if they say ‘yes’, you send them a special version of your maplisting review page where the 5 stars are already highlighted and they just have to click ‘yes’ to get their review made live straightaway. Google doesn’t like that!
Do Google reviews help improve the ranking of your maplisting?
In terms of volume, not necessarily. We often see security systems installers with 3 reviews ranking more highly than a similar company with 103 reviews.
Content inside reviews does help ranking but it is hard to influence this without breaking lots of Google’s rules. I would definitely discourage you from trying to do this. Not only could you lose your reviews, you could get a hard suspension of your entire map listing. And that becomes very hard to overcome.
At the end of the day, in a straight race for the potential customer who is searching maps for the best local supplier of alarms, door entry systems or CCTV cameras.
If there are no other differences, the guy with the most 5* reviews is most likely to get the click or the phone call.
Need to generate more Fire & Security leads?
Our new Pay Per Lead option is making marketing more and more affordable for NSI, SSAIB and BAFE accredited installers. And you don’t have to rely on accumulating great reviews on Google Maps to get the call. Click the button below to find out more.