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REQUESTING ONLINE GOOGLE CLIENT REVIEWS

Local independent insurance agencies rely on the Internet to increase their visibility and enable that most important first contact with a customer. The problem is that many agency owners do not have the time or resources to pay for ad space or continually revise website content to meet SEO (search engine optimization) demands. Fortunately, Google Reviews provide insurance agencies with a tool to boost online presence and make a powerful first impression.


So why are online reviews so important. According to BrightLocal’s 2016 research study:

  • 84% of people trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation
  • 7 out of 10 consumers will leave a review for a business if they’re asked to
  • 54% of people will visit the website after reading positive reviews


Finally, why Google? It is simple. Google is the #1 ranked search engine in terms of unique monthly visitors (larger than the next three combined).


Let’s get started with these simple steps:

1.  Verify your Business Profile via Google.

Visit Google My Business (www.google.com/business/) to Claim or Add your business. Verify address, contact, category and website information.


2.  Know How to Help Your Clients Post Positive Reviews

Your clients will need a Google account to leave online reviews. (Note: if they do not have a Google account, you can direct them to set up a free account via Google Google Sign-Up Link). Google does not allow anonymous reviews.

Depending on how a client accesses Google (Computer, Android, or iPhone/iPad) make sure they can find your business via Google Maps search (www.google.com/maps) and find the link to ‘Write a Review’. Additional information about this can be found at the following link: Google Support - Write a Review.




3.  Determine Processes and Procedures in Requesting Google Reviews

Start by encouraging reviews from a select group of people. Every agent should have at least 10 close friends or clients they can reach out to via phone to request a positive online review. These should be people who know you very well and trust you personally and professionally.

Next, set up a system where you pro-actively reach out to a client at the right time to encourage them to ‘Write a Review’. For example:

  • Set parameters for when you want to reach out to a client. You might choose right after a positive claim experience has been resolved.  Or perhaps after a policy is delivered and a client has expressed satisfaction transitioning to your agency (i.e., better coverage, responsive service, saving money).
  • The Agency Owner should contact the client to understand the experience with the agency.
  • Assuming the owner confirms a positive experience, ask the client if they would be willing to ‘Write a Review’ for your business via GoogleMaps and verify the best email address to follow up.
  • Send an email request with instructions IMMEDIATELY after the call.
  • Track your online reviews so that once a positive review is posted you can reach out to the client. Send a handwritten thank you card (and possibly a small reward, possibly a gift card to Panera, Starbucks, Barnes & Noble, Amazon, or iTunes).


4. Continue to Make this an Ongoing Part of Your Business

This is not a one-and-done tactic. According to the same BrightLocal research study, “73% of consumers think that reviews older than 3 months are no longer relevant”.  So if you have gone more than 13 weeks without a positive review for your agency, it’s time to see why your customers are no longer talking about your agency.

If you would like an example of an email template for requesting client Google reviews, please complete this form.

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