As a small business owner, there is nothing better than the thought of your best customers spreading the word about everything your company has to offer.

According to a recent Zendesk survey, 90 percent of respondents noted that positive online reviews influence their buying decision. And just as important, 86 percent of respondents claimed that negative reviews had the same impact.

With these statistics in mind, you want to do three things:

  • Focus on generating as many positive reviews as possible.
  • Do whatever it takes to get your best customers talking about you.
  • Take steps to avoid negative online reviews.

Now, it’s time to discuss three of the top ways to get your best customers talking about you. Not only will these positive reviews drive more traffic to your business, but they will also improve your online reputation.

  1. Just Ask

It goes without saying that you have a good relationship with your best customers. Why not ask these people to leave an honest review of your company?

Tip: don’t wait too long to ask, as customers are more likely to provide feedback when your service is fresh in their mind.

Not every customer will get around to leaving a review, but the more you ask the more success you will have.

  1. Make it Easy

Let’s face it: your customers don’t want to jump through hoops just to leave an online review. This is why you need to make life easy on them.

There are many ways to do this:

  • Setup profiles on a variety of review sites, including but not limited to Google and Yelp.
  • Add links to review profiles on your website, email newsletter, and anywhere else that can give customers a friendly reminder.
  • Explain the process in person. For example, if you work as an electrician, ask customers for a review before leaving their home (or place of employment). This gives you the opportunity to provide a short explanation of how simple it is to leave a review.
  1. Offer an Incentive

Before we go any further, remember this: there is a difference between offering an incentive and buying a review. You should never (ever) buy online reviews. Not only is it dishonest, but the review platform could delete your profile if you’re caught.

Even your happiest customers may need a push in the right direction. There’s no better push than an incentive, such as a discount code or entry into a monthly giveaway.

Tip: make it clear that your offer is in exchange for writing an honest review. You should never encourage customers to leave a positive review.


So, there you have it. As a business owner, it’s important to get your best customers talking about you.

With the help of these three tips, it won’t be long before you’re generating more positive online customer reviews than you ever thought possible!

For more insights on marketing strategy that actually works for small business, subscribe to the FreshLime Newsletter here. Connect with Jay Bean, Founder of FreshLime and Small Business Marketing Expert on LinkedIn and Twitter. And last of all, if any of these tips have helped you or if you have anything to add please comment below. We’d love to hear from you!