How to Get More Online Reviews for Your Winery (And Why They Matter)

You've worked hard to craft exceptional wines and create amazing tasting experiences. But are you getting the online buzz you deserve? In this digital age, online reviews can make or break a winery's reputation and impact your bottom line.
February 27, 2024 by
Uzunu, Onur Uzunismail

As a proud winery owner, you pour your heart into crafting exceptional wines and providing unforgettable tasting experiences. But in today's digital age, your online reputation can make or break whether new customers walk through your doors. Online reviews are a make-or-break factor that can either amplify your brand's growth or stunt its potential. Positive reviews serve as glowing endorsements, boosting your credibility and attracting new visitors eager to experience your wines. Negative reviews, when handled properly, present valuable opportunities to improve and publicly demonstrate your unwavering commitment to customer service.

Why Online Reviews Matter

Let's be real - when was the last time you booked a tasting or bought a bottle without checking the reviews first? Exactly. Today's customers live and die by online reviews. They provide invaluable social proof that can reel in new visitors or send them running for the hills.

  1. Influence on Purchasing Decisions: Approximately 93% of consumers say online reviews influence their purchasing decisions. This highlights the significant role reviews play in shaping consumer behavior and choices (BrightLocal, Local Consumer Review Survey, 2020).
  2. Trust and Credibility: Around 91% of 18-34 year olds trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. This demonstrates the trust consumers place in online reviews, equating them with the opinions of friends and family (BrightLocal, Local Consumer Review Survey, 2020).
  3. Impact on Sales: Studies have found that products with positive reviews have a 270% greater likelihood of being purchased than products with no reviews. This statistic underscores the direct correlation between positive online reviews and increased sales (Spiegel Research Center, 2017).
  4. Search Engine Ranking: Online reviews can affect a business's search engine ranking. Search engines, like Google, consider the number and quality of reviews when ranking websites, meaning that positive reviews can help businesses rank higher in search results (Moz, Local Search Ranking Factors Survey, 2018).
  5. Consumer Trust in Recent Reviews: The freshness of a review also matters, with 85% of consumers believing that reviews older than 3 months are not relevant. This fact points to the importance of continuously acquiring new reviews to maintain consumer trust and relevance (BrightLocal, Local Consumer Review Survey, 2020).
  6. Negative Reviews and Business Improvement: Negative reviews can also be beneficial; they provide businesses with feedback on areas that may require improvement. Furthermore, a mix of positive and negative reviews can often be perceived as more trustworthy than purely positive ones, as they demonstrate transparency and authenticity (Harvard Business Review, 2018).
  7. Mobile Influence: With the increasing use of smartphones, a significant number of consumers (approximately 82%) use their mobile devices to read reviews before making in-store purchases, emphasizing the importance of online reviews in the mobile consumer journey (Google/Ipsos, Mobile Search Moments Study, 2019).

How to Get More Reviews for Wineries

How to Get More Reviews

As a winery owner, you know the key to growth is getting new customers through your doors and having them leave as raving fans. But in this digital age, those fans need to spread the word online too. Here are some simple ways to encourage more online reviews from your happy customers:

Make It Stupid Simple

You'd be surprised how many customers want to leave a review but get frustrated by confusing processes. Provide clear, simple instructions and links for leaving reviews on Google, Yelp, and other popular sites right on your website or via email follow-ups. You can even print out QR codes they can quickly scan. Remove any barriers and make it a one-click process for happy customers to sing your praises.

Incentivize with Rewards

While you can't directly compensate for reviews due to platform policies, you can incentivize the process creatively. Enter customers who leave a review into drawings for discounts, free tastings or merchandise. The key is making it worthwhile for customers to take a few minutes to share their experiences. People love free stuff! 

Leverage Foot Traffic

Leverage Foot Traffic

When customers have an amazing experience at your tasting room, that's the perfect time to ask them to share their praise online. Train your staff to politely request reviews from delighted guests before they leave. Something as simple as "If you enjoyed your visit today, we'd really appreciate you leaving a quick review on Google or Yelp" can make a big difference. Capitalize on those feel-good moments when the experience is fresh in their minds. You can even set up tablets or provide cards with direct review links to make it seamless.

Send Friendly Reminders

Even if customers don't leave a review on the spot, you can still capture their feedback. Collect email addresses or phone numbers, then send friendly reminders 2-3 days after their visit or purchase. A short message like "We hope you enjoyed your wine tasting with us! If you have a free moment, we'd appreciate you sharing your experience online" with direct links makes the process easy. Just be mindful of not overdoing promotional emails that could be marked as spam.

Proudly Display Reviews

Don't just collect reviews - show them off! Positive customer testimonials are powerful social proof. Display your best reviews prominently on your website through feeds or quote graphics. Share them regularly on social media channels like Facebook and Instagram. You can even get creative with video testimonials. When prospective customers see how many others have raved about your wines and hospitality, they'll be eager to experience it for themselves. Just be sure to ask for permission before republishing any reviews.

Responding to Reviews (The Right Way)

While getting positive reviews is the goal, negative feedback happens - even to the best wineries. How you respond can make or break your reputation. Approach negative reviews as opportunities by following these tips for professional, service-minded responses:

Positive Reviews

When a customer takes the time to leave a glowing review, don't simply say "thanks" and move on. Be gracious, reiterate the key experiences that made their visit memorable, and encourage them to share photos or videos on social media. This reinforces their positive feelings and prompts user-generated content that attracts even more customers.

How to respond to negative reviews for wineries

Negative Reviews

As tough as it is, don't get defensive. Respond promptly, empathize with their disappointment, and take accountability. Apologize for any shortcomings and offer to make it right, whether through a refund, complimentary tasting or personal follow-up. Respond publicly and professionally. This demonstrates your commitment to customer service and can turn a negative experience into a positive resolution.

Uzunu · Establsh your brand

We are here to help

At Uzunu, we understand that running a successful winery goes far beyond making great wine. Our mission is to be a trusted partner, simplifying your online presence and marketing so you can focus on your passion and business operations while we help you grow.

Getting proactive about online reviews is just one piece of a comprehensive digital presence strategy. Our Establish Tier helps wineries build that solid foundation with services tailored to your unique needs - from brand messaging and website design to SEO, content marketing, and more.

Schedule a free consultation today, and let's discuss how we can help share your authentic story and amplify your online reputation.


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