Earlier this month, we wrote a blog about the importance of getting online reviews and managing your online reputation. In that blog, we claimed that online reviews can have a big impact on your business, but we didn’t go into detail about what exactly that might mean. In this post, we’ll dig into why getting good reviews should be at the forefront of your mind.
Why Worry About Reviews?
Last November, a member of our marketing team, Jenn, played at one of foreUP’s client courses in St. George, Utah. The employees treated Jenn and her daughter with such kindness and respect that Jenn thought they might know she was a foreUP employee, but when she asked them about it, they hadn’t known. However, when they found out, they gave her a free bucket of balls for the range and continued to provide excellent service throughout the rest of Jenn’s time at the course.
Jenn was so impressed, not only with the free bucket but with the course in general, that she posted a 5-star Google review with a few photos. She went on with her life and didn’t think much about it.
What One Little Review Can Do
Four months later, she received an email from Google, notifying her that her photos which were attached to the post had been viewed 5,000 times.
That means that not only did her 5-star rating keep the course at the top of local search results, her beautiful photos were viewed by around 5,000 different people thinking about going to Dixie Red Hills.
What does that mean for your course?
In short, it means that you can’t afford to let reviews slip through the cracks, good or bad, because more people than you’d ever think are reading the comments and looking at the pictures.
That’s also why managing your online reputation is so important. If 5,000 people on average will view a single review, engaging with each comment will show those thousands of potential golfers that you care about them and their experience. What’s more, Google has confirmed that responding to reviews boosts your ranking in local search results. Reviews are just too important to ignore.
What Can I Do?
How can you get those rave reviews like Jenn gave? Giving away a bucket of balls definitely helps, but Red Hills has an average rating of 4.6 stars, all from people who probably didn’t get a free bucket. What they did do was provide that same excellent service that Jenn experienced for every single player who walked through their doors.
The other thing you can do is start responding to reviews. It only takes a moment, but it can have a huge impact for your course’s business as potential players see both how you respond to good and bad reviews and determine whether the kind of service they see online is what they’ll want to experience in real life on the greens.
Online reviews have arguably never been so important, and with more and more people turning to technology to make their golfing decisions, it’s absolutely vital that clubs and courses take the time to manage their online reputation and get good reviews.