pestmarketer

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We respond to all negative reviews on GMB and other platforms within 2 to 3 days. But we don't respond to any positive ones. At all.

I've been pushing our organization to free up additional resources to respond to positive reviews. If not all, at least to some. At the very least I advocate that it furthers the customer relationship. That customer took the time to leave a positive review, we should acknowledge it and thank that customer (can help increase retention duration of the customer).

I was reading this from 2018 How-to Get Keywords in Your Reviews - Whitespark Local Insider and it looks like responding to reviews could correlate to rankings.

I couldn't find much talk about this on the forum, certainly nothing in the past year or so. Does anyone have any empirical evidence, or even just anecdotal, that responding to reviews helped GMB rankings?

I'm looking for additional firepower to make the case for additional resources to respond to reviews, and this would be a real boost if even some hint of it helping out.
 

Cherie Dickey

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I'm not sure about specific studies that have been done to test this, but Google encourages businesses to respond to their reviews to improve local SEO results specifically on the "Improve your local ranking on Google" help page: Improve your local ranking on Google - Google My Business Help

In my opinion, this is as close as Google gets as far as coming out and saying "This helps with ranking"

Google wants to recommend the most credible businesses, and interacting with the folks who took the time to publicly recommend you is just good business. It proves that you care about your customers to both the folks reading the reviews and also to Google.
 

Brock1321M

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I would definitely encourage replying to all your reviews from just a CVR/user experience perspective. But on the SEO side of things, replying to reviews is a GREAT way to add keywords/locations. Best of luck...
 

greenworld_

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I will agree with @Brock1321M - we advise customers to reply from a customer engagement perspective, but also as an addition to their Local SEO strategy - including keywords gives an extra SEO opportunity. Running tests around review strategy showed us review responses containing keywords are among the top 5 factors that affect discoverability.
 

Tim Kahlert

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I will agree with @Brock1321M - we advise customers to reply from a customer engagement perspective, but also as an addition to their Local SEO strategy - including keywords gives an extra SEO opportunity. Running tests around review strategy showed us review responses containing keywords are among the top 5 factors that affect discoverability.
Hi! Could you explain how this would affect discoverability and how you tested this? I haven't seen an increase in rankings or visibility when replying to reviews in a keyword-oriented way at all.
 

JoshuaMackens

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I think you might find some push back from the pros in this community about adding keywords to your replies having any impact on rankings. I myself have never tested this. But I think plenty on here have.
 

Tim Kahlert

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I think you might find some push back from the pros in this community about adding keywords to your replies having any impact on rankings. I myself have never tested this. But I think plenty on here have.
Thanks Joshua! That´s basically why I asked as it seems like everyone who has ever tested it didn't find any correlation between keywords in review replies and visibility/rankings.
 

greenworld_

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Hi @Tim Kahlert, we see the difference in terms of listings getting more impressions. Not necessarily on appearing higher in rankings. So businesses with no review strategy or not including keywords, but simply getting reviews and replying with "Great!", "Top!", "Thanks", we don't see showing as suggestions to users. Of course, there might be deviations in these tests, could be the chosen sample(s) or the business nature... I'm speaking from our experience, so excuses for "globalizing" :)
 
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