We’re all used to sharing our experiences online – from the restaurants we visit, to the products we buy and the services we procure. Here, Louise Wilson, head of finance sector at Moneypenny shares why financial advisers can make online reviews work harder for business.
To protect and grow client revenues and cater for the shifting demands of financial consumers – practices find themselves needing to put greater focus on the client experience. In a world where ‘shared experiences’ fill the internet – IFAs must acknowledge the power of the customer and their feedback. The drivers for this are almost certainly the shift in the way consumers expect to source a finance professional. The prevalence of digital channels is in part responsible – helped by Covid driving us all online – and we now expect the same level of experience, accessibility and choice from our professional partners, as we do the big brands we buy from.
Why are online reviews important?
While reviews may feel more synonymous with FMCG businesses – they have tremendous value for professional services. Whether it’s Trustpilot, Google, Yelp or social media, clients will be leaving reviews – the question is whether their value is being fully maximised by advisers.
Reviews provide transparency of quality, capability, price and staff. Reviews take some of the ‘unknowns’ out of purchasing decisions and make us feel informed – as if we have the inside track. They help us to compare, make an educated choice and put our trust in that decision.
In fact, 91% of 18-34 year olds trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, 93% of consumers say that online reviews influence their buying decisions and 64% of consumers check online reviews on Google before visiting a business —which is more than any other review site. During 2020, the year of ‘staying at home’ thanks to Covid-19, 31% of people said they read and referred to more reviews.
Reviews have the power to deliver more work to IFAs. The satisfaction level of existing clients can determine the number of new business recommendations a practice receives. Online review portals are the ideal place for clients to act as ambassadors.