At North Valley Optometry we tried a couple of different ways in the process for asking for online reviews.
I’m not a subject matter expert in the world of psychology, but I have read a number of books and articles noting that too many choices lead a person to take no action. Recently the NY TImes had an article called Too Many Choices: A Problem That Can Paralyze. There are studies by economists that have shown that 401K participation actually drops if there are too many options for the employee to choose from. Following the thread on professor Sheena Iyengar’s work I found this article Choices: why 4 is better than 5, 3 is better than 4, and 2 is better than 3. That enough social proof for me to confirm my internal gut feel or at least make me feel better that less is more in this case.
If I think about it from a customer view point it would seem to me to be a bit overwhelming if I received a follow up email asking for me to write a review on 1 of the following 10 directories. In just scanning through it I might think this is more of a hassle than it’s worth, “delete”. The question “is it going to be a hassle?” is also one of the reasons why we chose to just ask for a review on Yahoo and/or Google. I’m guesstimating 70% or more of the patients we ask either have Yahoo or Gmail account. So that makes it easy for them to write a review after they click on the link and sign in. If we asked them to write a review on one of the other directories most likely they would have to create a new account and than write a review. In my mind that would be a hassle and do I really want to create a new account just to get more spam?
The third reason why we chose just to ask for reviews on Google and Yahoo is those are the 2 search engines that drive most of the traffic to our site. If our customers and potential new customers are finding us on Google and Yahoo wouldn’t it make sense to have the reviews showing up right on those business listintgs? On the left image you can see how North Valley Optometry really stands out from it’s competitors in the Google 7 Pack with 48 reviews.
Obviously it would be great to have multiple reviews on multiple sites, but my thoughts are right now is to just make it as easy as the possible for the customer to take action and write a review with the least amount of hassle.
We are always looking for best practices. If you have a best practice or story you want to share in online reviews please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org