How to expand your reach and increase sales with Google Reviews

by SmileBack
6 min read

More than ever before, consumers read business reviews before making purchase decisions. Word of mouth is important, but even people that get referred to your MSP rely on online reviews to vet potential vendors.

Having an online presence full of social proof is critical to:

  • Getting discovered
  • Getting vetted
  • Getting new customers over the line

In this article, we’ll share why Google reviews (more than other other sites) are mission-critical to your MSP marketing and lead generation efforts. Then, we’ll outline how to set up Google reviews with SmileBack to boost brand awareness and close more deals.

Table of contents

  • Why Google reviews are important for MSP marketing efforts
  • How to set up Google reviews with SmileBack

Why Google reviews are important for MSP marketing efforts

Google reviews are a key part of your social proof effort. When backed by existing clients, your self-proclaimed offerings, benefits, and wins are far more impactful. 

First-party data is important (e.g. case studies and testimonials), but consumers understand those success stories are biased and written with a positive spin.

Raw reviews are far more likely to be perceived as genuine. The data for this is overwhelming. According to BrightLocal’s Local Consumer Review Survey 2022:

  • 98% of consumers read online reviews for local businesses
  • 78% use the internet to find information about local businesses more than once a week
  • 46% of consumers note that online reviews play a “very important” role when searching for service businesses

As for the platforms consumers read reviews on, Google is the overwhelming winner. Here’s the breakdown by platform:

  • Google: 81%
  • Yelp: 52%
  • Facebook: 48%
  • Better Business Bureau: 31%
  • Trustpilot: 7%

Prospects go on a journey that starts with Google reviews 

How exactly do consumers find your business through Google?

When someone searches for “managed service provider” in Google, the platform scans through its index to serve up the best results for that search term. Local SEO (search engine optimization) is a big part of this puzzle.

Google looks at where the person is searching from and then immediately crawls for a Google My Business listing. If you have one set up, it will scan through various factors (i.e. the keywords in your profile and reviews, number of reviews, review sentiment, etc.) and then serve up the results.

Top Tip: A Business Profile is not the same thing as a Google my Business listing. To manage your Business Profile, you need a Business Listing as well. This is how you claim your online real estate in Google. Think of it like an online brick and mortar store.

Even if the consumer doesn’t specifically ask for local results, if Google thinks they will be helpful, it will serve them up.

For example, here’s what we see when searching for “Managed service provider” in Westchester, New York:

How does Google choose which businesses to show here? That depends on many factors in their algorithm, but studies show that the average number of reviews is a critical factor. Average rating is also important (the more positive, the better), but review volume reigns supreme. 

Here are a few things to consider when it comes to local SEO rankings:

  • Review volume is critical (the more, the better)
  • Review sentiment is important (the more positive, the better)
  • Engagement is key (responding to reviews signals to Google that you are active)
  • Keywords help Google find you (adding your business name in your reply to reviews reviews can help you rank)

Google reviews allow for economies of scale

SmileBack reviews are great, but are not good enough as a standalone social proof solution. Google reviews are absolutely key for brand recognition and credibility building.

Prospects are not going to Trustpilot and other review aggregators to find MSPs. They’re not simply looking at your website testimonials. The SmileBack website widget is an incredibly valuable source of third party feedback, but it’s not a replacement for Google reviews. 

Google reviews are the best way to increase your output with minimal additional effort. You’re already collecting reviews through SmileBack, you simply need to leverage those same feedback streams to maximize your visibility.

Here’s how.

How to set up Google reviews with SmileBack 

Setting up Google reviews with SmileBack is an incredibly easy three step process:

  1. Activate our Google Reviews features on your CSAT survey or your NPS campaign (just tick the box during campaign setup); 
  1. Add your Google My Business link;
  2. Instantly start collecting reviews.

Note: New customers will need to generate a new survey snippet and replace the old one in their ticketing system. Read our help center guide on pushing positive comments to Google My Business reviews for more details. 

What to expect after you enable Google reviews in SmileBack

You won’t see results right away, nor should you expect to. It’s a slow and steady climb that is 100% worth the wait.

Imagine if just one customer a week leaves you a Google review. At the end of the year, you’ll have 50. If you’re in business for over 15 years, you’ll have over 1,000. 

This steady build up not only looks good to consumers (they have consistent business), it looks good to Google (they have consistent reviews, we should rank them higher).

This said, it’s not a set-and-forget system. You need to build a systematized approach in order to consistently collect and publish Google reviews.

Build systemized communications for optimal results

The best way to guarantee a consistent flow of Google reviews is to standardize onboarding and ongoing communications.

For example, when a new customer signs on, build the topic of Google reviews into your onboarding communications. This way, they’ll know from the start:

  • What Google reviews are
  • Why they’re important
  • How to push SmileBack reviews to Google

We recommend sending this email as part of an onboarding drip campaign. The first emails should introduce CSAT and NPS surveys. The next emails should introduce Google reviews and explain exactly how to push CSAT and NPS feedback to Google (and why it’s important).

Top Tip: To access the email templates for introducing CSAT and NPS campaigns, read our guide on how to increase your survey response rate

After onboarding, you should also standardize ongoing communication around reviews. This way, you’re supplementing your automated reminders with manual notifications. As a reminder, here’s the notification your customers will see at the end of every positive CSAT and/ or NPS survey:

Onboarding email template to introduce Google reviews

Subject: Google reviews help us serve you better 

Email copy:

Hi [Name],

Google reviews help new customers like yourself discover our business and learn how we can solve their problems. 

We’d love for you to leave us Google reviews because they help our business thrive, grow, and serve you better.

We’ve made it easy for you to leave Google reviews, just follow these three steps:

  1. Tick the box at the bottom of each CSAT/ NPS survey that says “I would like to post my comment on [BUSINESS NAME]’s Google my Business Page!”
  2. This will copy your comment to your clipboard
  3. Once you hit submit, you’ll be taken to our Google Business page where you can paste and post your review

If you have any questions about this process, hit reply and we’ll be in touch right away.

All the best,

[Your Name]

Ongoing email template to ask for Google reviews

For manual communications, the template will vary depending on how you choose to ask customers to leave Google reviews.

Here’s a scenario that could work:

  • Your CEO asks their assistant to pick out the best review of the week
  • The assistant emails that reviewer (as the CEO) asking if they could add their review to Google

Subject: Help us help you with a Google review

Email copy:

Hi [Name],

On [DATE], you left us a positive review. Thank you for taking the time to leave us this valuable feedback. It helps us:

  • Learn what’s going well so we can do more of that
  • Serve you better 

Would you be willing to post your review to our Google Business page? We’ve made it super easy for you, just follow these three steps:

  • Copy your review 
  • Head to our Google My Business page [PASTE URL FROM “Get more reviews”]
  • Paste and post your review

Here’s your review:


If you have any questions about this process, hit reply and we’ll be in touch right away.

If you don’t feel comfortable sharing your review to Google, that’s not a problem at all. 

All the best,

[Your Name]

Key takeaways

Google reviews are the most important social proof lever you can pull. 

  • Setting up Google reviews in SmileBack in a quick 3-step process that takes less than five minutes
  • Steady reviews over time are more important than quick spikes right away
  • Systemized communications (automated and manual) will help you maximize results
  • Respond to every single review to optimize local SEO (and include your business name in your responses to improve rankings)
  • Use Google reviews alongside SmileBack’s website widget and other marketing tactics to leverage economies of scale

Want to talk to a member of our team about Google reviews?

Book A Call

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