If you are not aware, back in 2013 Facebook added the ability for users to “review” any business by simply going to the Reviews tab of their Facebook page and leaving a quick comment along with a “stars” rating on the traditional 1-5 scale.
Just a few short years later, Facebook has already become one of the most widely recognized consumer review databases on the web due to its massive user base and simple interface for attracting customer feedback. In fact, for all the clients I’ve encountered in the past year or two – regardless of their location or industry – their number of customer reviews on Facebook has nearly always outnumbered every single other “consumer reviews” source on the internet.
But what good are (positive) customer reviews if they aren’t visible to anyone?
“It is only shallow people who do not judge by appearances. The true mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible…” ― Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray
Assuming for a moment that the majority of your company’s reviews are, in fact, positive, they are definitely something that you want to publicize. And while browsing a Facebook page does usually show a quick snippet of recent reviews on the lower-left, there is a MUCH more important online venue to worry about here: GOOGLE.
You see, the irony of Facebook reviews is that they don’t really provide much benefit to consumers who are already inside the Facebook universe (at least, at the time of writing in late 2015). Perhaps in the future Facebook’s data tools or advertising options will provide ways to shed more light on customer reviews, but as of now they are largely hidden away. Instead, you can leverage the heck out of your company’s reviews on Facebook by making sure they show up on Google as those beautiful, yellow Schema-powered stars that are now so coveted by marketing departments around the world.
“YES!” you are probably thinking. “I have reviews… but how in the heck do I get them to show up on Google!?”
Are you ready for the simple secret? Your Facebook page must be listed under the “Local Business” category. I’m not sure when or why this occurred, but in all my research over the past several months I don’t think I’ve ever seen the Schema “rating” data show up on any other category of Facebook page. Honestly, I don’t know why they do this; perhaps it was a secret agreement between Google and Facebook to avoid over-hyping the user reviews feature, especially within the SEO community.
Naturally, Facebook’s Page guidelines don’t mention anything about this, and probably never will. And most likely the company will continue to experiment with the Reviews feature for years to come, and may end up expanding (or retracting) the Schema data altogether, depending on their relationship with Google or the future of various Facebook features.
For now, consider changing your Facebook page’s category to Local Business and then selecting the appropriate sub-category, if you think it makes sense for the type of business that your page represents. After you’ve made the change, be sure that you re-submit your Facebook page to Google and hopefully within a few hours (or days) you will see those pretty yellow stars showing up for searches of your business. Of course, be sure to actually have some positive reviews first…
Pssst. Are you a happy LittleBizzy customer? If so, kindly consider reviewing us on Facebook! (Thanks very much!)