If you do any online shopping, it probably hasn’t been long since you found yourself scrolling through reviews for a product or service that caught your eye—or that was recommended to you. Enough glowing reviews, and you’re much more likely to hit that “Buy” button. Enough complaints, and you’re more likely to keep searching. 

The same applies to real estate agents. If you’ve taken the time to create a Google Business profile, you know that it looks unfinished until it starts accumulating social proof. 

That proof comes in the form of reviews from clients who are only too happy to recommend you and your services to anyone who will listen. 

If you have no reviews, you might as well be new and, as yet, untested. Anyone skimming your profile has only your word to take as proof that you, of all the agents in your market, are more likely than most to give them the best possible experience buying or selling a home. 

So, if you’re looking at your profile and thinking, “I need more reviews,” read on. In the latest Marketing Monday, Tom Storey shows exactly how he and his team have accumulated over 100 Google reviews, how to ask for them, and, most importantly, when to ask.

How to become the #1 reviewed agent in your marketplace

Everything you do to get the word out about your business and what you can do (and have done) for buyers and sellers in your market comes together to make your name recognizable to potential clients in your area. 

And once a prospective buyer or seller learns something about you—through online videos or other social media content, from a mailer or a drop-by gift, or even from an ad in the newspaper—what they’ll likely do to learn more is Google you. 

If your Google Business profile has only a few reviews (or not even that), it sends the message that either you’re new, or you’ve just recently created your profile, or you don’t know how to ask your clients for reviews. None of those messages are helpful. 

The good news is, if you’re not new and you’ve already helped dozens of people, you can build an impressive collection of five-star reviews by using the tips in this post. 

Depending on the community you serve, if you accumulate 75 to 100 reviews, you could easily become the most-reviewed agent in your marketplace. Do your research, though, to find out just how many reviews you’d need to rise to the top of the list. 

Don’t be discouraged, either, if the current most-reviewed agent in your market has over 100 reviews on their profile. Take it as a challenge to motivate yourself. Because if they can get that many positive reviews, so can you—if you’re willing to do what it takes to get them. 

The best time to ask for reviews

The most important takeaway from this video is the right time to ask for a review. So, if you remember nothing else, keep the following quote etched in your memory:

When the transaction goes firm, the buyer or the seller is never going to be more happy than that moment. Why is that? Because after that moment, sh** happens. Things happen between closing. ‘Oh, they changed the door knob,’ ‘They changed the shower head.’ There’s all these little things along the way. They’re never going to be more happy than the moment the transaction goes firm.

Tom Storey

At closing, your clients are living their lives. They’re no longer bathed in that sense of relief they get when a transaction goes firm. They’re less likely, then, to take a moment to leave a review because they’ve got a thousand and one things on their plate. 

That said, we’re not saying your window of opportunity for asking a client you’ve helped in the past is sealed shut. Keep reading. 

How to ask for reviews

When the sale goes firm, do as Tom Storey and his team do and send your client a gift. His team has a standard gift they send the moment a transaction goes firm. On the same day, they have the gift delivered to their client at their current address. 

Picture yourself in Tom’s place and imagine your client receiving the gift you send them on the day their sale goes firm. It’s already a moment of intense relief and gratitude. And when your gift arrives, their gratitude meter goes up even higher. 

That’s when your client will text you or one of your team members to thank you for the gift. And that’s when you have the perfect opportunity to ask for something from them. 

So, you’ll send a text or an email with this message: 

“You are so welcome! We had such a great experience working with you. By the way, I was just curious, would you be open to leaving us a Google review about your experience working with our team?” 

Don’t forget to include the link that takes them to the Google review site to make it that much easier for them to type up a review when they’re in that happy, grateful mindset. And, once they do, make sure to optimize the review by leaving a response that will get picked up by search engines. 

Set a review goal for the year

Even better than simply asking for a review is asking your client to help you reach a goal, simply by typing up a few words on their experience working with you.  

In the video above, Tom Storey revealed that he and his team have close to 150 reviews. So, here’s what he and his agents say to their clients when it’s time to ask for a review:

“Thank you so much! It’s been an awesome experience working with you! Our goal this year is to get to 150 reviews. We’re currently at 137. I’d love it if you could help us get there. Here’s the link below.” 

How to approach clients you’ve already helped to ask for reviews

Now, just because you missed that golden window of opportunity with clients you’ve helped in the past doesn’t mean you can’t still ask them to leave you a review. 

After all, if you’re still delivering value to your database, they still have a reason to be glad you’re their agent. 

You can always just send these clients an email (or a text, if they prefer that), with a message like this one (to borrow another example from Tom Storey):

“We’re trying to get our reviews up this year. I’ve had such a great experience working with you. I was just wondering if you’d be open to leaving us a review when you have a moment.” 

We know it’s not easy to ask for these, but it does get easier the more you do it. Make it a regular part of the way you do business, and you’ll rack up those reviews faster than you ever thought possible. 

And people will notice.