The hard work you’ve put into driving a great reputation on Cars.com is about to pay off even more. In the coming weeks, Cars.com Dealer Reviews will begin to appear in relevant Google search results, the preview pane for your dealership (to the right of search results) and your Google+ Local page.
Ratings have been shown to provide an increase of approximately 30% in click-through rates from Google, making it a great time to double down on managing your online reputation on Cars.com.
Here’s a breakdown of ways you can leverage your Cars.com Reviews to turbocharge your search profile:
- Build your volume: While Google keeps specific details of its algorithm under wraps, our SEO team here at Cars.com believes that volume may affect your ranking on search results pages. Volume is also an important element in general, as it gives shoppers confidence that the reviews you’ve received are legitimate, provides ample points of view on the experience you provide at your store and can help to offset any negative reviews you may receive.Read more: Cars.com Dealer Trainer Jack’s Simmons’s top five tactics for acquiring reviews
- Keep the content fresh: What is clear about Google’s algorithm is that fresh content is key. The more dynamic your Dealer Review pages, the bigger the impact upon your dealership’s search profile. And new activity on those pages shouldn’t just be limited to customers writing reviews – your response to the reviews you receive counts as fresh, updated content, so be sure to respond to every review you receive, whether it’s positive or negative.Read more: Presentation: Responding to Online Reviews
- Don’t fake it: Particularly for businesses that have received a few negative reviews, it may be tempting to hire a firm to “clean
up” your online reputation by contributing false reviews to offset the negatives with positives, but don’t take the bait! In addition to Cars.com’s screening process, Google uses an algorithm that evaluates similarities in content, IP address, location and other factors and flags reviews it has determined are fraudulent. If Google identifies suspicious activity on Cars.com and other review sites, your reviews could be penalized, negatively affecting your overall search profile and making it more difficult for car shoppers to discover your store.Instead, focus on building volume and turning negatives into positives by showing prospective shoppers you’re dedicated to making things right.Read more: Treat negative reviews as opportunities
With Google’s updates putting your dealership’s reputation on Cars.com front and center in search results, this is the perfect time to kick your reputation management efforts into full gear. For more information, check out our case study sharing Greenway Dodge’s secrets to Dealer Reviews success, our Guide to Managing your Online Reputation, as well as the Checklist for Success.