Celebrating Small Business Saturday
By Jane Garfinkel - Review Response Specialist
Widewail’s mission is to help small businesses efficiently monitor and respond to online reviews, scaling customer service. It only makes sense that we celebrate #SmallBusinessSaturday, coming up on November 24th. Below we’ve highlighted three companies which have mastered customer engagement. They demonstrate that businesses of any size can, and should, take control of their online reputations.
CREAM is a dessert franchise which primarily sells ice cream sandwiches. A Boca Raton location opened in the summer of 2018 and from the start has consistently excelled at customer interactions. The location has its own Google My Business, Yelp, and Facebook pages, all of which are kept up-to-date with helpful information including links to their menu, dietary information, and contact information. Their Yelp page even offers a free cookie to customers who “Check In” online. All of these pages are overflowing with beautiful photos of CREAM’s products, uploaded both by the business itself and its happy customers.
Since its opening less than a year ago, CREAM has already received 42 Google Reviews and 65 Yelp Reviews - and their staff responds to almost all of them. This is the best way to extend customer service beyond the counter!
As always, the most important reviews to respond to are negatives. In the example above you can see that CREAM was able to offer an apology to an unhappy customer as well as gain information about how their store is running. The customer has already updated her review to show she appreciated the response. This interaction demonstrates that CREAM is attentive to issues in their store and is committed to improving their customers’ experience.
DELLA Subaru opened in 2018 in Plattsburgh, New York. This family-owned dealership notes on their website that community involvement is a priority of their business. They don’t just say it, they prove it through their online presence. Check out this Facebook post - it promotes the theme of family and emphasizes that DELLA is a local, Plattsburgh business.
Their review response also shows that they value personal and customer-oriented service. Ernie, DELLA’s Platform Manager, answers reviews on Facebook, Cars.com, and Google My Business. The way he responds to negative reviews is outstanding. In the example below, he offers an apology as well as the opportunity to improve the customer’s experience. By giving out a personal cell phone number, Ernie offers the customer direct access to the business. The dedication and consistency in their online review responses might explain why they have solid ratings, 4.2 and higher, across all review sites.
Integrated Lawn and Tree Care is a landscaping company serving Colorado Springs, Colorado. They provide services including tree care, core aeration, and xeriscape maintenance. Their customer engagement begins with an easy-to-navigate website. On the front page is a “Request a Quote” button, contact information, and further down a large “Write us a Review” button.
Not only does Integrated Lawn & Tree Care solicit online reviews, they are committed to responding as well. The case below stuck out to us. The customer notes that after leaving a poor rating, someone reached out and offered him a free service. Not only was Integrated Lawn & Tree Care able to increase the rating of the review, they earned another sale in the future.
Currently they have 37 Facebook recommendations and 47 Google reviews - with a 4.8 and 4.7 rating respectively. These exceptional ratings come at no surprise, considering the care they put into their online reputation.
These small businesses are perfect examples of what online customer engagement can be. If you need further inspiration to improve the way your business engages customers online, read our article on the changing face of customer service.