There are a number of factors which are likely to have a bearing on how highly your business ranks when potential customers are browsing search engines.

A lot of firms recognise that business listings and the content of the company website will help nudge them up the rankings, but it is important not to underestimate the value of online reviews.

With so many businesses to choose from online, a large number of people will seek out reviews to find out what sort of feedback different firms have received.

The fact that these comments are clicked on so often inevitably attracts the interest of search engines. Recent research suggests that around ten per cent of the number crunching which will determine where you sit on sites such as Google will focus on reviews.

The key, of course, is to get as many positive reviews as possible.

With this in mind, it may be worth suggesting to someone who has specifically praised your service if they would mind taking a couple of minutes to post a review online.

Some businesses actually prepare handouts for their reception, giving instructions on where people can go to leave comments online. Or alternatively you can direct people via your website.

Inevitably it may be the case that you receive bad reviews from time-to-time. Unfortunately negative comments may harm your SEO ranking in the same way that positive feedback can boost it.

While you cannot delete reviews left by customers, it is important to use Google Alerts to let you know whenever your business is mentioned online and to respond to any criticism.

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