When we had our researchers look into how often businesses responded to their reviews, we had them look at how each region—west, midwest, southeast, and northeast— responds to online reviews. When we look at the big picture, companies generally respond to the same amount of reviews no matter where they are in the country, give or take about 10%. It’s still a low number, with around 60% of companies never responding to reviews. We think that’s the most important takeaway from the numbers. No matter where you are or what type of business you’re running, the majority of businesses do not respond to online reviews at all. Conversely, only 40% of company's respond to one to all of their online reviews. According to WebPunch stats, the chance of coming across a business that consistently responds to all of their reviews—and who is not a WebPunch client— is like seeing a full solar eclipse over Wyoming (wait, that just happened). Simply put, we think that’s insane! Responding to online reviews is an inexpensive and effective way to communicate with your customer-base, understand how your operations may need improving, praise your loyal customers, and reel in the ones who had a negative experience.
When we take a closer look at the map, the numbers tell us that businesses in the east are less likely than west coast states to respond to online reviews by about 10%. And while it may sound like we’re playing a broken record, we like the tune, even if it is broken, because it’s always important to be reminded: Businesses that respond to even a small percentage of their online reviews are ahead of more than 50% of the country’s businesses. Businesses that respond to all of their reviews, well, that’s a rarity! They’re in the top tier of businesses responding to online reviews and therefore, they really stand out. In case you didn’t get the message, respond to your online reviews and stand out.
For the most part, if you respond to just a handful of online reviews posted about your company, not only will you show your customers that you care and are listening to them, you’ll stand out among some 60% of your competitors. If you’re responding to 100% of your reviews, then you deserve a trophy or a book of “kapow” ninja stickers. It will pay off, believe us! Even if you’re an auto care company in the southeast where some 70% of auto care businesses respond to reviews, you’ll still be ahead of the rest of the country. You’ll be showing your customers that you are listening to them which we think is the most important thing a business can do and can only help your company succeed.