Consumer Attitudes Towards Recommendations of Local Business

Bightlocal has released their findings from their Local Consumer Review Survey 2010, Part 3.

The survey highlights some interesting findings -
27% of consumers have recommended a local business on Facebook – rising to 32% in female consumers & also in younger consumers (aged 16-34)
Reliability, Professionalism & Friendliness are the most important traits that lead to a customer recommending a business
52% of customers would more likely to recommend a business if it had a good special offer.
40% of customers would be more likely to recommend a local business if they benefited directly

You should visit the site for all of the information but here are some of the highlights that interested me.

Which of these local business types have you/would you recommend to someone you know if you had a good or bad experience?

The types of businesses that are most frequently recommended are those that are most frequently used.

In the last 12 months have you recommended a local business to people you know by any of the following methods?

People are more lilkely to use word of mouth and Facebook to recommend local businesses than a review site.

Would you be more likely to recommend a local business to people you know if they had a good value offer or discount?

Folks are obviously motivated by self interest.

As Myles points out the things that people find important to recommend a business have always been the things that they have found important. A business should be friendly, professional and offer good value in the form of incentives.

But the survey raises the question of how, when and where a business should engage in the process and what value reviews have. Hopefully more on that tomorrow.

Please consider leaving a comment as your input will help me (& everyone else) better understand and learn about local.
Consumer Attitudes Towards Recommendations of Local Business by

3 thoughts on “Consumer Attitudes Towards Recommendations of Local Business”

  1. Mike: This interesting piece looks quite lonely and appears to need more commentary. :D

    I read the original article. Lots of depth and breakdowns with regard to types of businesses, demographics as to age and sex, and many other attributes.

    IMHO, reviews are so critical, yet should be seen in the entire context of a business’s visibility on the web. They have their place, which is important, but not the only issue; in fact well seen on your infographic: http://www.blumenthals.com/index.php?web-equity-infographic

    As for me….my first priority is high rankings. Several anecdotal incidents speak to the issues of rankings, and reviews/referrals;

    1. I was reviewing activity about a website wherein I have an operating partner. When we improved his Google rankings for several critical keywords from less than #1 ranking (probably 2 or 3 to #1 we tripled traffic to the website and conversions . Tripled That is a significant difference.

    2. I was on the phone with a potential customer. The person had a lot of skepticism about the service based on prior experiences. He went to our Google Places Record and read a lot of glowing reviews.

    Per his comments he is coming in to purchase in 3 days. (We’ll see).

    He probably wouldn’t have seen the reviews for that business if it wasn’t ranked #1 and that the review volume stood out. The commentary in the reviews were startlingly different than his prior experience and the basis for his skepticism.

    Both are very important, but I’d get a quality website up and get high rankings as a top priority above managing the review process.

    (of course if you have both high rankings and miserable miserable reviews–> you are up sh!ts creek) :D

  2. Both are very important, but I’d get a quality website up and get high rankings as a top priority above managing the review process.

  3. CoolGirl,

    I agree with you regarding producing a quality website, but you should be aware that getting reviews has a lot to do with rankings. It’s not the silver bullet it used to be, but it’s still a major part of the algo.

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