Reviews are Everywhere
Try this: Look in a new car navigation system, and search for 'coffee'. If it's a current system, you'll see the closest coffee shops ranked... yes... by 'reviews'.
If you're still not convinced, call your credit card's 'concierge service' and ask for a recommendation for, say, a 'steakhouse in Boston, Mass'. Then... ask them to - candidly - tell you on what information they based their 'recommendation'. You are most likely to hear 'Zagat', 'Open table', or 'Yelp', or 'Trip Advisor'.
Ask your older friends how they choose a contractor, place to eat, hotel to stay in, dentist, electrician, dry cleaner... And they'll say 'the one we always use', or 'I'll ask a friend'.
Ask your younger friends - your future customers - how they choose local services, and they'll almost always include 'I checked them out online' - even if they also say 'from friends'... And today those 'friends' are just as likely to be 'Facebook friends' as they are 'friends they meet'.
The simple fact is that today, reviews really Are 'everywhere', and used by almost everybody - whether they know it or not. And your business' success depends on your good reviews: A one-star rating on Yelp can be the end of a good business. We say 'good', because even good businesses can have bad online reviews - if their review score is not at least as carefully watched and managed as their credit score.
A one-star rating increase can increase your Gross Revenues by 9%. But don't take our word for it: See the research reports from Harvard Business School and UC Berkeley (you can view them at the 'research' tab) - who both found that this is exactly what can happen to you when we deliver that extra star to you.