Author: Chris R. Campbell / Source: Business 2 Community A few years ago, social networking giant Facebook began to allow users to post on
A few years ago, social networking giant Facebook began to allow users to post online reviews and ratings of local businesses.
Since then, the volume of reviews on the site has rapidly increased, with more and more people using Facebook in the same way they use, say, Yelp and TripAdvisor: as a channel for reviewing businesses and sharing their own customer experiences.
Facebook outpacing other sites in restaurant reviews and ratings
Diners, for example, are using Facebook to review and talk about their trips to restaurants. In an analysis by customer feedback software company ReviewTrackers, which took into account reviews of 250 restaurants over a 6-month period, Facebook reflected the highest growth rate in reviews, outpacing other restaurant review sites like Google, TripAdvisor, Yelp, Zomato, and Foursquare.
These numbers echo findings previously made by Social Media Link, which reported that 2 in 3 consumers were more likely to share their thoughts, experiences, and opinions on Facebook after a purchase.
ReviewTrackers conducted further analysis — this time, of over 331,920 online reviews covering more than 1,300 restaurant locations — and found that customers are also likely to leave the highest ratings on Facebook, which has an average of 4.31 stars out of 5, compared to the industry average of 3.88 stars out of 5.
Yelp and TripAdvisor, two of the most popular review sites for restaurants, average 3.46 stars and 4.04 stars out of 5, respectively.
Why the surge in Facebook reviews?
Well, it’s worth noting that, unlike other sites that filter reviews posted by new users, Facebook makes it easy to rate a business. Its review feature has a familiar interface, and from a log-in perspective, users can get started simply by clicking the Review button on a business’ Facebook Page to start writing. For better or for worse, Facebook’s review filters are also less strict.
Harnessing the power of customer reviews
Given this growth in review activity, Facebook is increasing its focus on this area and rolling out features to make itself much more than a platform for liking cute dog photos posted by friends or live-broadcasting your trip to Machu Picchu.
Facebook’s Professional Services feature, launched in 2015, offers a list of local businesses with the best reviews and ratings, helping guide users as they look for products and services in a specific geographical area.
For business owners and marketers, getting listed in Professional Services can be a game-changer, with positive reviews, 5-star ratings, and high rankings having the power to create opportunities more meaningful than a dozen likes or a link to your new company blog post can.
Last year, Facebook also introduced…