Its official, reviews are becoming ever-more relevant to online search rankings. We know from the source that Google values trustworthy Businesses. They evaluate this trust through frequency of content and positive ratings for a business. A recent study wanted to assess how local businesses are using Google Reviews and provide a benchmark to help compare your business with others in your industry.
The report anonymously explored over 93,000 local businesses across 26 different industries to uncover:
Which industries are leading the way in using Google reviews (and who’s trailing behind)
How many reviews businesses in each industry have
The average star rating for businesses in each industry
If star ratings and number of reviews correlate with local rankings
Which star ratings are most common in each Google local ranking position
The study found that bars, restaurants, and hotels are the most reviewed industries in the country. 74% of local businesses have at least one review. Accountants were the least reviewed industry.
Local Stores have been utilizing Google Beacons to help process high volume customer traffic and transmit this information back to Google. An interesting finding in these industry results is that users rarely have the need to seek financial consultation compared to how often they need to visit their favorite restaurant or bar. We also will notice that the traffic that comes through restaurants and bars is much more anonymous than niche specific services like accountants and paralegal.
Generating trust is a huge concern with consumer research. This study noted that trustworthy businesses are those that have accumulated at least 34 reviews on GMB. Ranking position is also a major concern for local businesses. Businesses that rank in the top 3 Search Engine Results have at least 47 reviews. In conclusion, It is important to set review goals for your business so that you are at active in your industry. Reviews and ratings are a key evaluator of your business.