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June 02, 2023

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Consumer Survey: 80% Say They Trust Online Reviews As Much As Personal Recommendations

A survey of 2,100 North American adults (90% from the U.S.) conducted earlier this year found that 80% said they trust online customer reviews as much as personal recommendations. 

The Local Consumer Review Survey 2013 by SEO firm BrightLocal.com is an annual study into how consumer behavior is affected – or not – by online reviews. Other findings from the study:

  • 95% searched online for a local business in the past month

  • 85% read online reviews for local businesses

  • 73% said positive reviews make them trust a business more

  • 65% said they are more likely to use a business that has positive online reviews

  • The most important traits they look for in online reviews of a business are reliability, value, expertise and professionalism.

  • 72% of consumers reported having recommended a local business by word of mouth (down from 78% last year), while 37% did so on Facebook (up from 32%).

Lee Rosen recently had a good post on his Divorce Discourse site about Helping Your Happy Clients Review You Online. It mentions a Canadian SEO company’s website that helps you generate a customized PDF that you can hand out to your happy clients to help them provide you with an online review (make sure this is permissible under your local ethics rules).

With the growing prevalence and popularity of online reviews, you would be doing your practice a grave disservice by not encouraging satisfied clients to provide you with a review online.

© The Rainmaker Institute, All Rights Reserved National Law Review, Volume III, Number 206

About this Author

Stephen Fairley legal marketing expert, law office management

Two-time international best-selling author, Stephen Fairley is the Founder and CEO of The Rainmaker Institute, the nation’s largest law firm marketing company specializing in marketing and lead conversion for small to medium law firms. Since 1999, he has built a national reputation as a legal marketing expert and been named, “America’s Top Marketing Coach.” He has spoken numerous times for over 35 of the nation’s largest state and local bar associations.