When a potential member looks up your gym on the internet, they won’t only get your website’s link, they may also see a list of your online reviews, and even those for your competitors.  If you are one of those people who are conscious about maintaining a good reputation online, this article will help.

Creating a strong online presence on review sites is easy, but takes effort.  Here are 6 ways to increase the number and quality of your online reviews and star ratings.

1. Choose the perfect timing for your invitation

WHEN you invite someone to review is crucial. For starters, it’s a great idea to ask for a review while your customer is still at your gym, and their positive experience is standing out in their minds.

More advanced gym owners could have an automation using a gym management software that triggers an invite for a review after a member visits the gym a certain number of times.

Other gym owners want the invitation to be more personal. So their strategy is to have the instructor or the trainer ask the clients for a review at the end of a class or session.

2. Reduce friction in the review process

Make sure that the process of leaving a review is easy as possible.  Even if your members love your gym, they will be unable to leave a review if you over-complicate the review process.  Spell it out for them and make sure they know exactly what needs to be done to submit the review.  If they have to guess, it will not get done.

3. Set your sights on the perfect review platforms

It is better to maintain a solid presence across different review sites.  and target the BIG ones like Google and Facebook 1st because are the most popular.

Reviews on these sites have a positive impact on your local search ranking as well.

4. Set expectations on leaving a review

Train your staff on how to ask for the review. Let your members know WHEN they will receive the invite, HOW they will receive it, and WHY it’s important for them to respond.

5. Sending invites via SMS

Less than 20% of emails get opened, where as everyone opens an sms. So if you want your members to see your online review invites, it could be a good idea to send it to them via text.

6. Engage with your reviewers

You should respond to both negative and positive reviews as soon as possible. The best way to do this is to have a tool that consolidates your entire online review presence into one dashboard.  This will save your staff time and help them focus more on your members.

Getting negative reviews? No problem. The following steps can help you make sure that problems are resolved ASAP:

  • Apologise and rebuild your relationship with an upset member
  • Stay calm and don’t let your emotions get in the way.  Let the response come from a manager or someone who is not involved in the situation
  • Offer a proactive solution to their problem
  • Take the conversation offline once you have offered a solution, provide a number and email address where they can reach out to you directly