As a Google Local Guide, I review every place I visit and every place I eat. With over 300 reviews and photos uploaded to Google, I am just one of many who are helping Google index local businesses, build reviews and improve the accuracy of Google Maps.
My image above of a Portobello mushroom cheese sandwich purchased at Foode in Fredericksburg has now been seen 13,378 times in just a few short months.
Google does not pay me for these services, but I do receive special Google branded products and other perks for being a Google Local Guide.
Here's what I've found out as I travel my local area.
1. Reviews really do matter.
2. People actually look at the photos I post for a business.
3. Negative reviews mean I probably won't visit.
4. I am constantly evaluating my store or restaurant experience.
5. If I receive poor service, I will write about it.
6. Even for low end restaurants food presentation is important.
7. People actually read what I post about a business.
8. I do not tell business owners I am reviewing them.
9. I myself select who I trade with based on online reviews.
10. Reviews are more important than a nice website.
The bottom-line is that you are on display and being rated with every phone call, every visit, every plate that is served. You may have the best website, but if your visitors do not receive the royal treatment when they call or visit, you'll set yourself up for a negative review. Get several and they can damage your business and sales!
All the Best,
Nancy C. McCord