Take a look at these beautiful yellow stars...
Won't they look amazing next to your eCommerce business' web link on Google search result pages?
Of course, it would!
These star ratings can tell a LOT about your online store. It means your eCommerce site is trustworthy and honest.
And when users find that you have 4 or more star ratings in Google... The more likely they are to click on your site.
That means more conversions and sales for your business!
But here's the problem...
Most businesses don't bother with the Google reviews stars (and other search engines) as part of the Search Engine Optimization strategy. They think capturing the elusive star ratings takes too much work.
Let me tell you another thing...
It does not take a rocket scientist to apply the Google star ratings on your online store. Because today, you'll discover...
- What are star ratings, and how does it work
- Different ways of implementing Google star ratings to boost digital marketing campaign
- How to verify that your Google stars are showing up in search results
Why don't we start with...
What Is A Google Star Rating?
This is a five-star rating scale based on customer reviews. Customers can leave online reviews on different platforms. They can choose to rate from one star (worst) to five stars (best).
Here is an example:
Google will then use its algorithm to get an average. This average will appear as the star rating in Google search results.
While the star ratings in Google won't affect your rankings, they can definitely influence the local search ranking.
Plus, it builds on your social proof and credibility.
Let's expand on...
Why Star Ratings Are Important For Your eCommerce Store?
As if the reasons mentioned are not enough, here are more reasons why you need to make sure that your star snippet shines on Google search results:
- Improve clickthrough rates. Having positive reviews will boost search visibility, which means more clicks and traffic to your website.
- Helps you rank higher on local searches. Google search advocate John Mueller says that more reviews and a positive star rating can improve local ranking.
- Increase brand trust. 92% of B2B consumers are more likely to buy after reading trusted reviews.
- Encourages new customers to leave more new reviews. A positive review can motivate others to share their experiences and leave reviews.
Isn't all of these benefits exciting? I'm sure you are eager to learn...
How To Get Star Ratings In Google Search Results?
There are different kinds of star ratings on Google search results.
The rich snippet can appear in listings such as product ratings, branded local searches, paid search results, third-party review sites, and app store results.
First, let's take a look at...
1. Organic Search Engine Results Pages
When you get star ratings on your organic search listing, you'll be able to stand out more.
And here's the good news... Usually, this feature used to be available for paid ads. But they can now appear on the organic Google search results.
To leverage this development, you need to include schema markup on your eCommerce website.
When you add schema markup on a product web page, it will allow that stars to show up on search results.
You can use the Google Structured Data Markup Helper to easily include this on your website.
Of course, your structured data markup needs you to display reviews for it to show up.
Before you get to the technical part, you have to choose the type of "aggregate rating" schema markup that fits your situation.
Thankfully, Google has a guide about rich snippets.
Rich snippets can be used for items like:
- Local business
- Software App
Once you have rich snippets on your website, they won't immediately show up on search results. Google will have to be the one to decide when it will appear.
When you've with your structured data, it's important that you...
- Run your structured data through Google's Structured Data Testing Tool. It will let you know if you need to make any corrections in your schema markup.
- Use the Rich Results Test. This is a simple tool to check your schema markup. It also shows notices and recommendations for your schema code.
- Re-check your XML sitemap in Google Webmaster Tools. This will make sure that Google will index your edits as soon as possible.
- Check it through Google Search Console. This tool will help you discover every warning on your schema code.
- Manually look for rich snippets on Google search results on a weekly basis.
Pro tip: It's enticing to create fake reviews to change your rich snippets. But do not fall for it! Google is smart enough to sniff out fake rich snippets. Instead, here are effective strategies to gain more quality reviews.
Are schema markup and the structured data talk too technical for you?
Schema markup is highly encouraged. But even if you don't have it, you still have a chance that Google will show your star rating.
And there's another way how to get star ratings in Google search results...
2. Paid Ads Star Snippets
You might be familiar with seller ratings. These showcase advertisers that have high ratings. The result shows your stars and review count.
And you don't have to have schema markup for your website to appear in a search result.
For you to have a free business listing, all you need is to follow the free listings policies. It shows the prohibited content, practices, and site requirements you need to look at.
Then, you have to upload your promotion feed to the Google Merchant Center.
Pro tip: You usually need to have 100 reviews in the past year for your ads to include star snippets. These can come from Google reviews and third-party reviews.
The next one is the easiest way to get Google review stars in branded searches...
3. Branded Local Searches
Do you already have at least five reviews on Google Maps, Google My Business, and other Google+ accounts?
That means you are nearly there!
Google will aggregate Google reviews and other reviews from different sites to your business listing.
All you have to do is to ask your customers to leave new reviews.
And respond to your reviews! Google sees your engagement as a good thing, too. Use your Google business profile to answer Google reviews.
You can also make use of other websites with...
4. Third-Party Review Sites
That's right... Google recognizes other review sites as a way of determining your Google rating.
Some of these sites are Trustpilot, G2, Feefo, Reevoo, Yelp, ReviewCentre.com, Bizrate through Shopzilla, and many more.
To aggregate ratings from them, determine which website is best fitted for your brand.
For instance, your branded website search result includes Trustpilot. You can include it in your digital marketing to ask customers to leave their reviews there.
For some online businesses, we cannot ignore...
5. App Store Results
Your website may have an app that goes with it. And you want a rich snippet alongside them on App Store and Google Play Store.
Yes, an app can also have a star rating. Users can see how well you fare and how many votes you got.
Just like the listings that we discussed, you need to ask customers to leave reviews on your app. Responding to any question or issue they might have is also adding the odds in your favor.
And that's the ways you can do to...
Let Your Star Ratings In Google Twinkle And Shine!
Each star that you gain shows potential customers that your business is high-quality, trustworthy, and an investment worth making.
It can also make you stand out from the sea of competitors on SERPs.
So keep on doing audits of your eCommerce website when it comes to your SEO standing. Keep on optimizing your customer reviews until you make all those five stars shine.
And I have just what you need to do so... Try Debutify Reviews!
With Consumer Heuristic Intensification, it will let your customers sell for you. You can easily collect and manage reviews on autopilot.
It offers over 50 Add-Ons that can improve conversions, AOV, and profits!
You can also check out our post on how to be a Google Trusted Store.
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