How to create a Google My Business reviewURL pre-filled with 5 stars and ask customers to write a review

How to create a pre-filled 5 star Google Review link
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Updated - 08/18/2017
Originally Posted - 07/29/2014

With more than 90% of consumers researching online before ever contacting a business, positive public business reviews are very important for every small business.

How do you get reviews on Google My Business?

While it is not feasible for every business to directly contact customers and clients to ask for a review, those businesses who can – Should! And more than asking for a review, businesses should send a direct link to the actual review form to make it super simple for customers to review the business on your Google My Business page, especially for businesses who serve local customers.

How to create a Google My Business review URL pre-filled with 5 stars and ask for reviews! Click To Tweet

After completing a project at WebWorks of KC, we send a simple thank you follow-up email to clients. After thanking new clients, we wrap up the email by a asking for a review on our Google My Business listing.

With this request, we send a direct link URL to the form for them to leave a review – https://www.webworksofkc.com/review

As you see (if you click), this URL automatically loads the Google My Business review form so clients can easily leave their review of WebWorks of KC. This direct link means there is no searching, frustration or abandonment of the review mid-process when the client starts to leave a review.

Make it easy for clients to review your business on Google My Business

Google My Business review box with star rating and comment box. Note – to leave a review, users must login with a Google account

We focus on Google My Business reviews because… Well, Google rules the internet, right? Sure, reviews on other websites are nice, but Google is where it’s at! Also, reviews on your My Business listing will help boost your results in Google search results.

More than 80% of all internet searches are done through Google and when a potential customer searches for your business with Google, the average rating of your reviews on Google My Business are displayed on the results page with a link for the searcher to read all of your Google My Business reviews.

Google reviews and reviews link are displayed in the Knowledge Graph

Business name, address, hone number, reviews and more information are displayed in the Knowledge Graph when users search for your business name.

Do reviews on Google My Business really make a difference?

Absolutely, online reviews make a difference, and specifically Google My Business reviews. 84% of people trust online reviews as much as a recommendation from a friend or family member.

As well, research shows that 5 reviews is the magic number of Google My Business reviews. Once your business hits 5 reviews on Google My Business, your business will likely start seeing benefits in organic search results and the “Local Pack” of search results.

Google My Business reviews boost a business's organic and local search rankings

Google My Business reviews boost a business’s organic and local search rankings

The third way Google My Business review are valuable is because a user must have a Google account to leave a review. When an account is attached to an online review it is more likely to be a legitimate review from a real person, not a fake review created by the business owner to make their business look good. If your customer wants to remain anonymous, move on to the next customer. Don’t spend too much time trying to convince a customer to create an account or to use their real name. Ask that customer to leave your business a review on your business’s Facebook page or email you a testimonial you can add on your website, instead.

How to create a direct URL to the Google My Business review box pre-filled with 5 stars

This review URL works on all devices

You will need an iPhone to create your pre-filled 5 star Google review URL. If you don’t have an iPhone, we can create the 5-Star Google Review URL for you

Google is continually updating all aspects of their products and services. The process to create a universal URL to the Google My Business review box has change multiple times over the past two years – and the actual name of the service has change many times as well (Google Places, Google+, now Google My Business)

READ Next   Missing Google Reviews or Why Did Google Delete My Reviews?

Creating a universal direct link URL to the Google My Business review box pre-filled with 5 stars is a little bit of a process, but it is well worth the work.

  1. If you don’t already have it, create a Google My Business page for your business and verify your address. We can create your Google My Business page or evaluate your page.
  2. Now that you have your Google My Business listing, grab your iPhone
  3. Open Google Chrome. If your iPhone doesn’t already have the Google Chrome browser installed, download Chrome from iTunes
  4. Use incognito mode on Google Chrome. Open a new incognito tab. Incognito mode ensures you are not logged in while creating your direct review link so your username/account doesn’t become part of the URL that you send to clients.
  5. Go to google.com (or the version of Google for you business’s location country. For example, google.co.uk in the Unided Kingdom)
  6. Search for your business name exactly as it appears on your Google My Business listing. Your business’s Knowledge Graph should show up with all of your business information. If you don’t see your business, just modify your search a little – include your city/state, phone number, address, etc. – until your business pops up.
Google business search with knowledge graph

Search for your business name and make sure you see all your business details in the Knowledge Graph

  1. Scroll down a bit, find the “Review and Rate” section. Tap that 5th star at the far right. Make sure you hit that 5th star, this will be the default rating copied over in the URL you share with your clients and customers.
Select the 5th star in the Google Review

Scroll down to the “Rate and Review” section and click on the 5th star – at the far right.

  1. Excellent, now you are viewing a review screen. Don’t be concerned that is asks you to log in. This is the screen we need and you cannot be logged in. Scroll up to the address bar
Google review incognito mode

Google will ask you to log in before leaving a Google My Business review

  1. Press and hold in the address bar until the “Select All” option appears. Click it. Then, hit “Copy” to copy the URL
Write a Google My Business review

Copy the URL. This is the URL you will share with clients when asking them for a rating

Woohoo!

You now have a universal link that will work on desktop or mobile. You can email it to yourself and start to use it exactly how it is right now – https://www.google.com/search?q=WebWorks+of+KC+-+SEO+%26+Web+Design&rlz=1CDGOYI_enUS740US740&oq=WebWorks+of+KC+-+SEO+%26+Web+Design&aqs=chrome..69i57.34685j0j9&hl=en-US&sourceid=chrome-mobile&ie=UTF-8#fpstate=lie&lrd=0x87c0e840c28bc427:0xe4d31c24d6a3b991,3,5


NOTE – Google has changed the way their local business listings function – and the name of the service – many times over the years. Depending on where in the world your business is located – this process may not work for your Google My Business listing. If you cannot get this method to work for your Google My Business listing, I am happy to do it for you – fill out this form to get started. I’m always testing to improve this method – sign up for our Newsletter to be notified of updates to this article.


Ugh… lee!

A better option: take that big ugly long link over to goo.gl and shorten that long URL into something much more manageable, like this – https://goo.gl/piZkwe – The biggest benefit of using goo.gl over other link shorteners is the name recognition of Google. You’re sending the client to Google to leave a review, so using goo.gl to shorten the link makes sense. NOTE – Some people have reported that if a goo.gl link is not clicked for an extended period of time, it will expire and no longer function. I have not experienced this, and I cannot confirm

The best option for your 5-Star Google Review URL is t0 create a personalized professional URL like – https://www.webworksofkc.com/review – this personalized URL redirects to the big-long URL above when a client clicks it. Click the link to see it in action

You can create this redirection in the .htaccess file of your web host. The .htaccess file is in the root of your website. You can usually access it through your hosting control panel (or cPanel) or via FTP.

READ Next   Missing Google Reviews or Why Did Google Delete My Reviews?

In your .htaccess file, add the redirection in the format below on a single line.

Redirect 301 /review https://www.google.com/search?q=WebWorks+of+KC&rlz=1CDGOYI_enUS740&oq=WebWorks+of+KC&aqs=chrome..69i57j69i60l3.32279j0j4&hl=en-US&sourceid=chrome-mobile&ie=UTF-8#fpstate=lie&lrd=0x87c0e840c28bc427:0xe4d31c24d6a3b991,3,5

If you need help, we can create this professional review URL for you.

Would you like us to send you a tutorial video on how to create a personalized /review link at your domain name?

Like the one we use – https://webworksofkc.com/review

Sign up for our newsletter and we will send it to you!

Crafting an email or message to your customer asking for a review

Now that you’ve done all the hard work: get the customer, make the customer happy, created a tool to help you get the review, there’s only one thing left. Ask for the review. My advice when asking for a review – keep it short and sweet. You’ve already made the customer happy – you don’t want to turn that all around by annoying them now.

Our Web Works of Kansas City Thank You emails are very simple:

Hi John Doe,

It was a pleasure working on your project!

Would you mind taking a moment to leave WebWorks of KC a short and honest review on our Google My Business listing?

Leave your review here – https://www.webworksofkc.com/review

Thank you,

Travis Pflanz
webworksofkc.com

Another tactic we use is to simply text the link to the client. Of course this takes a little more finesse, but if you regularly text with clients, this method is an even quicker way to get that review.

Again, we keep the message super-simple:

It was a pleasure working on your project!  Would you mind taking a moment to review us on Google? → https://www.webworksofkc.com/review

Do you need a Google account to leave a review?

As mentioned above, and shown in the step-by-step screenshots above, your client must have a Google account of one type or another to leave a review of your business on Google My Business. Google’s goal is to be as accurate as possible. Allowing anonymous reviews does not promote accuracy, and allows for misuse of the Google My Business review system. Your customer will always have to be logged in to Google to leave a review of a business on Google My Business.

If that’s a problem for you or your customer, maybe your customer has a Facebook account, ask your customer to review your business on Facebook instead.

If nothing else, ask you customer to email you a testimonial that you can display on your website.

At Web Works of Kansas City, most of our clients come to us needing a new website, needing search engine optimization (SEO) for their existing website or needing one of the other various digital marketing services we offer. With every new client, we ask if the client has a Google account, any type of Google account – Android, YouTube, Gmail, Calendar, Drive, Google My Business, Analytics, Search Console, Voice, AdWords, Google+, Blogger, AdSense, etc – Many times clients are unaware all these websites and services are Google. Any of these accounts will work.

If a client does not have a Google account, we walk them through the process or create the account for them.

We always integrate Google Analytics and Google Search Console into a client’s website – Both Google websites. Both requiring a Google account. As well, we create a Google My Business listing for their business or website… Again requiring a Google account.

Sure, this method works well for a web design or digital marketing company, but what about other industries? Consider including a hint or note at the end of your thank you email, something to the effect of – “Did you know Android, YouTube and Gmail are all Google accounts?”

Gmail is the most used free email service on the internet, more than half of all cell phones in the United States are Android, and YouTube is the 3rd most visited website on the entire internet. There’s a very good chance your customer already has one of these accounts.

Now you know the key to getting more Google reviews, go out and get them

Stop hoping customers will leave reviews. Start asking for reviews and top it off by making it even more simple for customers to review your business.

Be a Hero!

Share this article with your colleagues, networking groups and chambers of commerce!

Oh yeah… Send a tweet to thank me for writing this article. I’ve already created on for you! Flattery get you everywhere!

Thanks to @TravisPflanz for teaching me how to create a 5-Star Google review URL http://pic.twitter.com/2sO1OlD5h8 Click To Tweet
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164 comments about “How to create a Google My Business reviewURL pre-filled with 5 stars and ask customers to write a review”

  1. Dan says:

    Thank you!

    That trick with URL and redirect in htaccess is genius!

  2. Lisa Tait says:

    This was a fabulous and detailed article – exactly what I needed and much appreciated! One question – what about just hiding the link in the message itself? E.g. Would you be so kind as to leave me a short and honest review on Google? (hyperlink Google, or make it more obvious – ) Here is the link: Google (hyperlinked). Do you include the actual text of the link in case the hyperlink doesn’t work for them?

    • Thanks for reading.

      You can definitely hyperlink in an email, if you like. However, keep in mind that many people remove hyperlinks in emails. This is why I always include the URL, rather than a hyperlink.

      It looks like your website is on WordPress. I believe the best method for you would be to use the Safe Redirect Manager plugin (https://wordpress.org/plugins/safe-redirect-manager/). In the “Redirect From” field enter /review and in the “Redirect To” field, enter your long 5-star review link.

  3. Sandra says:

    Do you even know how long I’ve been trying to figure this out? The google instructions are different and have never worked anyway. You guys are My saviors!!! Thank you so much for this post.

  4. Preetham says:

    Hi,

    Thank you for this article. This was very helpful.

    One question, is there any way to pre-populate description text in the review pop-up? This is part of a project which we are working on.

    Any help would be appreciated.

    Thank you.

    • Hey Preetham! I don’t think it’s possible to pre-populate the description, because a customer must be logged in to leave their review. If you find any way to do it, shoot me a message to let me know how.

  5. Paul says:

    Hi,

    Here’s an interesting situation. It seems that someone has managed to leave a 1* review on a couple of websites/companies local to me (my competitors). Before anyone asks – it was certainly NOT me – I would never do that to anyone as this is peoples livelihoods we are talking about here 🙂 The reviews simply state the user as “Anonymous Critic”. This is a worry for all genuine business owners as:

    1. I can’t work out how they did it
    2. Because of 1. I can’t defend against it should it ever happen to me (as I suspect it may be a fake review anyway)
    3. From previous experience Google will not react or take the review down

    Here is a link to an image of the one of the companies reviews: http://i.imgur.com/tjDhu9Y.jpg
    I will be happy to share the “actual” businesses with the OP or another SEO person but I don’t want to publish the exact location of the company or review here for privacy reasons/

    Cheers,
    Pauk

    • Thanks for reading!

      Honestly, I wouldn’t worry about it too much.

      There are many much more important things business owners can be doing, rather than worrying about a fake review every now and then. If you get a fake review, just a leave friendly comment that says you don’t believe you’ve ever worked with a person named “__________” and invite them to contact you if they were truly a customer who had a bad experience, so you can help resolve their issue.

      Not to mention, people don’t really trust a company with a perfect rating… That seems more fake than a 1-star review every now and then.

      If you’re really worried about a fake review, take a look at this article – https://whitespark.ca/blog/remove-fake-google-reviews/

  6. Hi,

    This article was great and we did secure a few reviews with this. However, we believe Google has made couple of fundamental changes –

    1) It asks the end user to login as soon as they click on that link
    2) Google has de-activated the option of “pre-populated” 5 stars. It does bring up the review page but with no stars selected.

    Is there a workaround for this?

    Regards

  7. Hanna says:

    Thank you for this article! It was very helpful. What do you think about using the “Insert Link” button to edit the link and how it gets displayed when drafting the email using gmail?

  8. Dan says:

    Does setting up the link with the 5 stars already selected trigger Google spam filter? I just did this for my site, and got a very nice review immediately. 1 week later the review has vanished and I don’t know why. I have also reached out to Google and am awaiting an answer. As far as I know the customer and my business did not violate any Google review rules.

  9. Thanks for the neat trick to take the customer right to the 5 star review field.
    I always ask for google reviews. It doesn’t take a lot to get ahead of the competition.
    In my specialty, I have 3 google reviews which is more than any of my local competitors.
    Gary Barcus
    GB Woodworking
    Norwood, MA

  10. Great article works just perfect for me.
    Thanks
    is there any way to make the link shorter?

  11. Dan says:

    Great write-up but unfortunately this no longer works for desktop users.

    It works great on mobile devices, allowing them to go straight to the 5 star review page. When you use the same link on desktop, it simply just brings up a search for the brand name. No review page.

  12. Thank you for the article. I followed the steps and haven’t had any issues. I have talked to some of my clients and they want me to incorporate this technique to boost there reviews as well. Thanks!

  13. A client just told me our old link wasn’t working (due to Google change). I found this post and used it to create a professional URL that redirects. Thanks!

  14. ronan says:

    Well, how would you compare the Google my business reviews with Yelp? Which one in your opinion is more important? We have a local company and we are just starting about establishing a review system.
    Also, from my experience, I believe tackling the bad reviews on yelp is a mess- how well Google my business reviews perform when compared?

    • It really depends on the business, itself. For some industries, Yelp is completely irrelevant. Either way, Google reviews are super-important. Google reviews directly impact your business when someone searches for a business in Google or using Google Maps or Google voice search.

      Again, it depends on what you mean by “bad reviews.” When someone leaves a bad review of your business, just reply to the review and sincerely apologize and offer to make the situation right. There’s nothing worse than a business that argues with customers online.

  15. Cathy says:

    Thanks so much for this information. It’s been such a struggle to get links to go straight to the review page until I saw this article. In the past we’ve had to use manual instructions, but this has fixed that issue.

  16. Awesome blog post! I needed this today. Thank you for the awesome tips, illustrations, and instructions.

  17. Hi Travis, really well written article, with lots of thought and detail. Hi from a fellow SEO consultant – I’m based in London, though I work with many international clients via Skype. Busy times mean you slack off on your own collecting of reviews – despite telling clients to always do it. I don’t know why Google makes this vital element of their service so difficult to locate, but I found your article by erm… searching Google. The irony, huh? I love your style in doing that 301 from your own site, classy! Finesse and attention to detail are sadly rare in the digital marketing world, so thanks for showcasing the little things which different some of us. Who knows, maybe we’ll work together at some point 😉

  18. Pamela says:

    The ability to have a direct to review link on Google has been needed for a long time. Thanks for the easy to follow directions. It worked like a charm. I posted this article to my business Facebook page. Excellent!

  19. HI Travis – thanks – it took me a while to figure but it works for sure – have shortened the URL too. Great advice.

  20. Thank you!! As a small business it is always nice to find ways to do things ourselves in order to cut our costs. This article was easy to follow and I am looking forward to our clients reviews. I think you’re a genius:)

  21. Garrett says:

    Awesome how-to. Thanks for putting this info together. For some reason, when I create the link from a desktop computer it works on both mobile and desktop, but when I create it from my iPhone 6 in Safari, it doesn’t open the pop-up box to leave a review – just takes you to the Google search results page. Any idea why that would be happening?

    Just wondering if it’s a bad thing if we use the desktop generated link, since it seems to be working correctly on both desktop and mobile? I noticed in your response to the previous comment you said that the link has to be generated from a mobile phone in order to work correctly.

    • There have been so many versions of Google’s business listings throughout the years (Places, Google+, Google My Business, etc). My best guess is that results may depend on when the listing was created. If you’re sure the link works universally, then give it a go.

      When I created links for this tutorial, I created the link on an iPhone 5. Tested on: iPhone 5, iPhone 6, Android, Windows 10 – Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Edge, Safari

      The best advice I can give – Test the link on as many different devices as you can.

      With Google business listings, I doubt everything will be 100% universal because there have been lots of different versions of their business listing service.

  22. Brian says:

    Travis, if you have a moment, I’m experiencing a unique issue with this. For reference, I am in the US, and your link above opens and goes straight to the star review on both my computer and iPhone. However, I have not been able to get it to work for our Google My Business Page. For reference I have 4 separate locations all tied together on Google My Business.
    I’ve tried creating the link on my iPhone, and also through iPhone on private mode and I DID get a variation in the link. However, the link(s) will not open to the star review page ever, they only open to our Google page and would require a person to then select the leave a review, etc. I’ve tested this on an IPhone (and clearing cache), on a Macbook using Safari (and after clearing cache), on a PC using IE and Firefox, and on a Macbook using Firefox. When creating the link, I followed your instructions precisely, and tried creating the link to one of our locations Google pages specifically. Is this because I have Google+ tied to the My Business Page, or could it be because I have the 4 connected, or do you have any other advice. Thank you in advance for sharing the article and any ideas.

  23. Ryan says:

    Hi there,

    Interestingly, I am having a very different experience.

    If I do as described above for my own business on a mobile, I can click on the link on a mobile and have the review pop up and 5 stars pre-populated.
    HOWEVER, when I click the link on a desktop, I DO NOT get the review page appear (and must go looking for it).
    See this link as created on my up to date iPhone. It does not appear to be universal. It should work on your phone, but not desktop:
    https://www.google.com.au/search?site=&source=hp&ei=euIzV5KBDMK9mgX0iLDoBQ&q=kogarah+chiropractic&oq=&gs_l=mobile-gws-hp.1.2.41l3.0.0.0.8400.1.1.0.1.1.0.363.363.3-1.1.0….0…1c..64.mobile-gws-hp..0.1.22.3.eP86oDIwzd8#istate=kp:xpd&lrd=0x6b12b9c2c1d43fcb:0xc14ba6f8097a5f6,5

    On the flip side, if I go through your steps, but on a desktop (which you said wouldn’t be universal), email the link to myself and open it on my iPhone, it DOES open straight to the review, HOWEVER is pre-populated for some reason on my iPhone to THREE stars. It does appear to be universal.
    The link used is:
    https://www.google.com.au/search?site=&source=hp&ei=euIzV5KBDMK9mgX0iLDoBQ&q=kogarah+chiropractic&oq=&gs_l=mobile-gws-hp.1.2.41l3.0.0.0.8400.1.1.0.1.1.0.363.363.3-1.1.0….0…1c..64.mobile-gws-hp..0.1.22.3.eP86oDIwzd8#istate=kp:xpd&lrd=0x6b12b9c2c1d43fcb:0xc14ba6f8097a5f6,3,,

    I would also like to point out that when I click on your link https://www.webworksofkc.com/review on my iPhone, it does not redirect or automatically pop up to the review page for you, instead just showing your Google listing.

    I’ve just tried this on two desktops and two iPhones to replicate and verify the results, so I’d expect you see the same with the above links.
    Would love to hear your thoughts on this and if there’s possibly a solution to the automatic 3 Star populating.

    • Ryan says:

      Actually, I just tried changing the ,3 to a ,5 in the last link and it is the star rating.

      Still interesting to note that I’m experiencing the desktop created link work on both devices as opposed to the mobile created link. And that your https://www.webworksofkc.com/review is no longer working as it should.
      Changes made by Google?

    • You might need to reboot your phone or clear the cache. I just checked my short link on all the popular mobile and desktop browsers, and the short URL works on all devices and browsers.

    • Thanks for the note about changing the 3 to a 5 in the desktop URL to pre-fill a 5 star rating. That was actually an issue I discovered when writing a previous version of this article. Although, I did not look into it in depth.

    • Hi Ryan. Thanks for the comments.

      My best guess as to why it works differently for you it that you are not in the United States, and Google My Business may not work the same is other countries. In the past, other methods that I posted only worked in the US. When creating and testing the methods listed in the article, I used Safari on an iPhone 5 to create the links, and tested them on an iPhone 6, Andriod, Google Chrome on Android, Chrome on Windows, Firefox on Windows, Internet Explorer on Windows, and Edge on Windows – along with comments from the past versions of this article, this is why my best guess is Google My Business functions differently in different countries.

    • I’ve updated the article a bit… From all of my recent testing and experiences, it seems that “luck” of when and where you created your Google My Business listing plays a big part whether this method will work for you or not.

      With all the changes to the Google local listing service over the years it seem that depending on where in the world your business is located, when you created your Google My Business listing, or even when you’re reading this article – this process may not work for your Google My Business listing. If this process doesn’t work for your Google My Business listing, my recommendation is to create a link on desktop and another on mobile and send both links to your customer.

  24. Megan says:

    Do I have to use my cell phone to create a direct link? What if I am using a desktop?

    • Hi Megan. Thanks fir the question. Yes, you need to use a cell phone to create the direct link to the Google My Business review box if you want the link to be universal and work on all devices. If you create the link on desktop, the link won’t work on mobile devices. This is because the link structure is created differently on mobile devices, with a different structure. Desktop browsers load review box using javascript and mobile browsers do not. Desktop browsers can translate the mobile structure properly, but mobile devices cannot translate the link that’s created for desktop browsers properly.

  25. graham ansell says:

    Thanks man, the google “write a review link” worked a treat,

  26. Nando says:

    Thank you Travis. This is going to be a great resource for clients.

  27. Ok everyone – I’ve finally done all the research, and updated this article so that the method works perfectly!

  28. Peter says:

    Still a good write-up, Travis. It got me most of the way there! Google continues to confuse. Looking forward to the update…

  29. Nando says:

    The’re a good conversation at Blumenthal’s as well:
    http://blumenthals.com/blog/2015/11/27/google-local-and-the-continuing-lack-of-a-clear-google-messaging/
    (I hope it’s ok to share that outside link, just trying to connect community resources for local, since Google doesn’t seem to care much about us)

  30. Graham Robins says:

    Yes, this direct link is no longer working with the new Google+
    Even the old pages that you can get working – they don’t leave the review, it gives an error message.
    Looking forward to a new way! 🙂

  31. It appears that the latest Google My Business and Google+ updates have practically killed this method.

    Fortunately, I am working on another method, as we speak.

    It appears to work a little differently, but very similar. This post will probably be updated after Thanksgiving.

  32. Jean-Louis says:

    Bonjour Travis, Many thks for this trick, unfortunately it’s no more functionnal as new Google+ interface came out :-/ Grrrrrr

  33. gene sower says:

    None of these links you suggest open a review box. For instance this one: https://plus.google.com/+WebWorksofKC?hl=en&review=1 Just goes to your G+ page but no review box. This is on a Windows desktop. Did this change? TIA

  34. Nando says:

    This seems to have stopped working if one switches to the new Google+. Sigh, Google’s mixed messages regarding revews can be quite annoying…

  35. April says:

    Hi! I’m sending emails to my clients and went to pull up my review link, and it’s no longer available. No “write a review” under the new google plus pages. I’m lost. I can access reviews via the google my business dashboard, but that’s a private access to management, right? Any advice if you’ve seen the newest updates?

    Thanks!

  36. Hi Travis,

    Great article – just what I was looking for!

    I’m based in the UK and found that using the (un)modified URL review link worked best for me (worked in Chrome also). The modified URL didn’t work.

    Now I can send the link directly to clients without explaining the whole process 😉

    Thanks again,

    Rob

  37. This is a great article and something I will be implementing with my clients, thank you. However….did you realize you are in direct violation of Google’s Guidelines to business names as you have “| SEO & Digital Marketing” in your GMB listing http://screencast.com/t/nBd4d7dPplo – which reads differently to your post above.

    I am not complaining in anyway Travis I just find it amusing and wish you all the very best….again, great article!

    • JL says:

      Andy, are you referring to the guidelines that suggest consistent names across all properties? Or something else? In the section about consistent names, https://support.google.com/business/answer/3038177?hl=en, it sounds like it’s more of a “guideline” in fact that’s the word used, but you could be talking about something totally different.

      JL

    • Correct, our Google My Business page title is now different than in the screenshots in this article – I am doing some testing of different methods. WebWorks of KC ranks very well locally in Kansas City and we get plenty of organic leads. “WebWorks of KC | SEO & Digital Marketing” is actually a legal DBA for our Missouri based business.

      One test – What happens to the link to the review form, if the business name is changed on Google My Business – The answer: Nothing, the link works the same after the business name is changed.

  38. Johan says:

    Excellent.

    I have two options:
    1) The above to Google Business.
    2) Or to a Google form where I take it and publish on my website if they don’t have a Google Account.

    BTW: I tried the delete portion of the link edit but it did not work. I also tried yours. But again it did not work.
    I then tried the unedited link on my mobile and it worked on Andriod. Not sure what the case is on iPhone

    • Johan says:

      I checked it on the iphone. It worked but not the same. The user needs to scroll past Google Ads, the click on stars, the login then review. By this time she has dropped out.

  39. Jeremy Schwegmann says:

    Brilliant. Thank you!

  40. ohoyee says:

    does any one know how to comment with link but not showing the link just words to click on it for the link

  41. Amy Gleich says:

    Help! This worked fine for me yesterday, the link was instantly bringing up the review box, but now it doesn’t work anymore! I haven’t changed the address, any ideas?

    thank you! Great post, btw! 😀

    *Amy

    • Marian says:

      Hi Amy, the second link option in the post (the long one) is a temporary link, it won´t work after a couple of hours or days, Google changes it continuously. At least this is our experience. We are using the &review=1 option, but as said in here, it doesn´t work on mobiles…

  42. Dan says:

    Thanks for writing a great article. I’m going to give this a try in the next email I send to my client database.

  43. Mike Nay says:

    Thanks for the update on this. Very useful in our latest round of email newsletters we have going out! Works great without any issues.

  44. Kimmie V says:

    I followed your instructions for generating a direct link for mobile devices. It is showing the review now button for the
    I-phone but it is not working for the Android. Any suggestions?

    Thank you!

  45. Joel P says:

    I have been experimenting with my clients links over the last several months and have found it best to drop “posts” from the 1st link given. I didn’t think there would be any effect because Google populates “posts” into the link after the fact anyway but I did and do experience much better consistency by dropping “posts.”

    Regarding the mobile link, I was able to create a fully functional shortened link for my company website but was not able to reproduce it with a client’s listing. The link for my client opened up the Google search page with the listing, but did not open the testimonials. The test was performed on Android. The only difference I could see is custom Google+ links; ours is custom, there’s is not. I will continue working with it. Excellent Article!

    • There currently is no way to get the “review” page to popup automatically on Android, according to my testing. You can get it working on a PC, iPhone/iPAD, but not Android. The best you can get is a link that asks user to open in browser or maps, and if they choose maps, then they can click on your business, scroll down and leave a review.

    • For anyone who the mobile version is not working, when did you create your Google My Business page (no matter what the service was called at the time you created it – Places, Plus for Business, My Business, etc)?

      From all the research, it seems that newer Google My Business pages are the ones having the problems. As you can see with the examples in the article, ALL methods discussed work for WebWorks of KC Google My Business page – I just double-checked to make sure.

  46. Matt Blank says:

    Thank you! This is really helpful.

  47. Matt Z says:

    I am really struggling with this I’m interested in creating a QR code to place on my invoice. As usual mobile is not functioning correctly. My original business link was https://www.google.com/search?q=real+event+enterprises&sourceid=ie7&rls=com.microsoft:en-US:IE-Address&ie=&oe=&gws_rd=ssl#gws_rd=ssl&lrd=0x886b52ef78574335:0x715ca66edca784ac,2

    I had modified it to https://www.google.com/webhp?ie=UTF-8#q=real+event+enterprises&lrd=ssl&lrd=0x886b52ef78574335:0x715ca66edca784ac,2

    This functions perfectly on a regular browser. However when entered on mobile it will not open the window to review only the business search on Google. I would have lost faith in it due to endless Google updates but your link still works excellent. Your help is greatly appreciated!

  48. Kingsley says:

    Was pretty pumped to see this article. Tried it right away, got my link. It works on desktop but not on the mobile. When I try the link on my mobile there isn’t even a place to press to write a review.
    Is anyone else having this problem?
    https://www.google.ca/?gfe_rd=cr&ei=l7gFVqH0EKiC8Qexq7-gBA&gws_rd=ssl#q=simon%27s+jewellery+estevan&lrd=0x53202299bf643c99:0xd9564bccf7ac10b5,2

  49. Very helpful and easy to use information. Appreciate it!

  50. I am trying to follow the steps for providing a direct link to Google My Business review on mobile devices and when I copy the link (after clicking write a review) this is what I get:

    https://www.google.com/#q=xip+training+systems&lrd=0x4cb4372aa699f8cd:0x34faac7465dd16f3,2

    I don’t see the section I am supposed to cut out – so is it possible this link works on all browsers? I am currently working in Firefox so perhaps that is an issue?

    Any help would be awesome as we want to set this up as a clickable link in the newsletters that we send out.

    Great article!!! Really appreciate the steps and information provided.

  51. Adam Horváth says:

    Hello, it doesnt work on my page either 🙁

    https://plus.google.com/u/1/b/112715179662741901777/112715179662741901777/posts?hl=cs&review=1

    Am i doing something wrong?

    Thanks

  52. seth says:

    i did the steps and emailed it to another address i have and when i clicked on the link it took me back to google search

  53. Once you create this link, can you then text it to a bunch of people and have it work every time? Im trying it and it seems to only work once from each send. I sent it to multiple people (multiple different locations, and each only redirected correctly once.

    • I don’t know of any reason it wouldn’t work. The box does take a second or two to load – Maybe your people are patient the first time, but not patient after the first time?

      I have opened the shortened link above to the WebWorks of KC Google My Business page many, many times since it’s been posted here.

  54. Arno says:
    September 21, 2015 at 3:41 pm
    https://plus.google.com/+ParisBabylonTours/posts?hl=en&review=1
    no pop up review request

    Arno, I cannot get yours to work even though the URL works correctly. IDK what’s wrong with it; my browser is working, as it works on other sites. Your review page is working; I can get to it from maps. But I can’t get the pop-up window to load from the url.

  55. Arno says:

    It is a French business. Anyway to find out how to make it work?

  56. Arno says:

    Not working for me either has this been fixed by anyone???

    • What is not working for you? This method works great. I just double-checked to make sure. Are you in the United States? I am not familiar with non-US Google My Business pages.

  57. Chris says:

    Hi
    This looks like a great idea but on my URL I do not have the ‘ie’ after an & so not sure what part to delete, can you help please.
    https://www.google.co.uk/?gfe_rd=cr&ei=brz6VeTbBeeq8wfzvKH4Ag#q=queens+park+dental+team&lrd=0x48739f5a7f54301f:0x385f5bb191f1fbbb,2

    • I am not familiar with UK Google My Business pages. Can anyone give Chris a little insight?

    • I have tested on Chrome, Firefox, and Internet Explorer. Your link works on all. I just updated this article to reflect a new discovery – For the review box to popup, a user MUST be logged into Google. Let me know how this works out for you.

  58. Dana says:

    Help! If I remove everything as you said to do after the ? and before the ie, the link doesn’t work. Here’s the initial link:
    https://www.google.com/search?q=allendale+family+%26+cosmetic+dentistry&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a&channel=fflb#aq=t&lrd=0x89c2e38a52b13f2d:0x1a403baa2c4f032,2

    Am I better off just shortening it and using this instead of trying to remove things from it?

  59. aint working for me. Can someone please try the following link. Im doing the simple add hl=en&review=1 to the end of my buisness page???

    https://plus.google.com/u/0/b/104772478523546024612/dashboard/overview?hl=en&review=1

    Thanks
    gaz

  60. I just tried this, and it worked great for me, so it looks like it’s still working. It loaded the Google + page, then in a second or two, it popped up the review window.

  61. Thanks for this. I’ve now been able to set up a page with the links for my customers.!

  62. Julie says:

    Hey Travis,

    Thanks for the great info and for sharing all of your hard work. I’ll be eagerly awaiting your solution to the google update. I haven’t been able to find anything to solve it so far.

    Best,
    Julie

  63. Hello everyone,

    I have found a solution to this. First off your business page must have at least 1 review. Assuming it does this has worked for me for a handful of sites. Open google and search for your business using the full address. When your business page appears on the right hand side, click on the view review button. When the review box opens copy the full URL and use this for your link. When opened by a PC it shows your reviews with a post review button at the top. When you view on a mobile ( I have checked Firefox and Chrome on android and Safari on an Iphone) the review box will open. Above the posted reviews are the outlined 5 stars. The customer then gives the star rating and the browser will move onto the comment/post section.

    This has worked for me. I hope it does for you!

  64. Not working for me? Please help

    thanks
    Gaz

    • Hi Gary, Google recently changed the function of Google+ and Google Business pages. The contents of this blog post may not work for everyone. When I get a little free time, I hope to find a better solution. If you find one before I do, please post it here.

  65. @Travis:

    In your reply on August 23 at 2:16 am you mention that “Only reviews on Google will help a business rank higher in Google search results – Especially local search results. This is why I focus on Google reviews over reviews on any other website.”

    Yes, but keep in mind that Yelp is almost always at or near the top of Google organic search results, so every business should also strive to receive as many 5-star Yelp reviews as possible … thanks to the search synergy of Yelp and Google, Yelp reviews can be a great asset for any business in Google search results.

  66. Very good, informative article, Travis … but I must respectfully take exception to the sixth paragraph, which states: “We focus on Google Business reviews because… Well, Google rules the internet, right? Sure, reviews on other websites are nice, but Google is where it’s at!”

    Yes, Google truly does rule the Internet … totally and brilliantly!

    However, to imply that Google reviews are somehow ‘better’ than reviews on other sites is not even remotely close to the truth, as I’m sure you’re aware. (I’m as big a Google fan as anyone(!), and I’d like it to be true, but we all know it’s not.)

    To borrow a phrase, Yelp ‘totally rules’ the local business consumer review segment. Combined, all other sites on which customers can write reviews for local businesses (Google, Angie’s List, Thumbtack, Facebook, ad infinitum) don’t come remotely close to the volume, clout, impact, influence, popularity, name recognition, and ease-of-use of Yelp in this regard. Whether we like Yelp or not, there’s simply no comparison.

    And to be fair, regardless of our feelings about Yelp’s business practices, it can be one of our best friends on the Internet, and I genuinely appreciate how much Yelp reviews help my business.

    I think Google can seriously challenge Yelp in this market segment if Google can ‘get it right’, which to this point it’s failed to do.

    • Reviews, in general, are good, yes.

      Only reviews on Google will help a business rank higher in Google search results – Especially local search results. This is why I focus on Google reviews over reviews on any other website.

  67. BWB says:

    Good article. Exactly what I was looking for. Worked perfectly.

  68. thanks for the good information.

    people want to write google reviews, but google makes it unnecessarily difficult and confusing for them to do so.

    as flawed as yelp is, it’s simple to create a quick account & do all the yelping you want.

    are you listening, google? you don’t have to love yelp, and yelp doesn’t have to love you, but you might wish to consider making your review process as simple as yelp’s (just don’t emulate yelp’s review filtering algorithms, please LOL).

    • That’s always boggled my mind, as well. Google uses reviews as a ranking factor in search results (at least locally), yet makes it difficult for customers to review a business.

      I agree with requiring a Google account, because completely anonymous reviews doesn’t do much good to anyone, but the whole process is WAY too involved.

  69. Thought this was the article I needed… but unfortunately this does not work. It just reloads the same page. Any thoughts?

  70. DefiNet VPM says:

    this is not working for me at all. whether on a custom URL or not. That’s using Chrome and Safari.

  71. Your business does not have a physical address attached to it. If you want to get reviews, you must add your address to your business page.

  72. Debbie says:

    I like your article but I’m having a weird problem. When you go to my page, I don’t see all the cool icons you have. If I make a version of your link with my Google page (to go right to the review), NOTHING happens. You just get my page.

    I have been into Settings. Reviews are checked. I have NO idea why I don’t get those cool icons or the ability to review. Is it because I’m a consultant and didn’t list an address? I don’t want people having my home address and I don’t see clients here.

    Thanks for any help you can give.

    • Hi Debbie, which “cool icons” are you referring to? What is the link to your Google Business page? I will take a look

    • Bryan Lee says:

      Yes, I have the same problem. I think the cool icons are the icons at the left-hand side such as review, directions, star, upload photo. My page only has share. And if I add the hl=en and review=1, nothing happens.
      I just added an address but that didn’t seem to fix it. Is it possible there are different kinds of Google+ pages? The funny thing is I have another page that does have the icons, and the review box does pop up.
      Does the address have to be “verified” by Google first?

    • Yes, to receive reviews, you business must have a physical address attached to it.

    • Debbie says:

      How do I add a physical address to my Google page? I don’t see that ANYWHERE in settings. And I’m under the impression I can’t erase it and start over without losing my good +Name. Please advise.

    • It sounds like you set your page up incorrectly at the beginning. This article might help you – http://localu.org/blog/google-now-allows-brand-pages-become-local-pages/

      I’ve never went through the process, though.

    • Debbie says:

      If I wanted to start over, do you know how I would tell Google to release my +PtypeUX name back to me?

    • I don’t think they will, but you can try contacting them, here – https://support.google.com/business/answer/2622994?hl=en#contact=1

    • Debbie says:

      Thanks, will try that. 🙂

    • Bryan Lee says:

      Just fyi I added an address to my Google+ page, but still don’t get the review pop-up or other buttons. I’m beginning to suspect I created one page as a “Storefront” page and the other one as a “Service Area” or “Brand” page, and that might be the difference – maybe only “Storefront” pages can have the review pop-up?

  73. Mitch says:

    We had the similar problem (appreciate the mobile version)

  74. Tony Wang says:

    Nice write up Travis, I was just figuring this out the other day after Google slammed Local and thus shut down our old approach. Unfortunately from what I can tell, going to your Google page thru google.com/maps only shows the review link if you already have some reviews. The pages I checked that have no reviews don’t have a link to do reviews. They’re really pushing us to the maps app, pooh on Google!

  75. Tomas Schramme says:

    What if a bunch of reviews come in within a few days due to the email you send out? Will google not let them post because it would appear you are fishing for reviews?

    • I don’t believe that would be the case, as many types of businesses have hundreds (or more) of customer interactions each day. For my business, I have a few dozen interactions with clients or potential clients on my absolute busiest days.

      Even by sending a direct link, not everyone will leave a review – I have two clients who told me they planned to leave a review nearly two years ago. I send a “reminder” every few months, then they promise to leave the review… It’s never coming…

  76. The article has been updated with a mobile “solution”

  77. For those following this article, I have found a way to include a direct link for leaving a mobile review. I am still working out a few of the details, but I hope to have it complete soon.

  78. Keith L Evans says:

    OMG- thanks so much! I tried different links to Business Google pages, but this is HANDS DOWN the most direct and best method. Why is Google so ignorant not to place these instructions in their help pages? https://support.google.com/business/answer/3474122?p=reviews_get&rd=1

  79. Jonah Ewell L.Ac. says:

    Hi, this works very well for desktop browsers but doesn’t seem to work at all on mobile, whether it redirects to the mobile browser or the Google+ app. Do you know of a fix for this? Thanks!

  80. Kevin Quinn says:

    I am having the same problem as Jay. When clicking your link, and when attempting to append review query to my page’s URL, I get the white box, but no way to write review?

    • What browser are you using? I in the newest versions of Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer.

      Try clearing your browser’s cache.

    • Kevin Quinn says:

      Travis,

      Thanks for the quick response. Same result after clearing Cache, in latest versions of Chrome and IE…

    • Hmm… Without being able to duplicate it, I cannot trouble-shoot it. I just tried again and didn’t have any problem.

      My guess is that the issue lies on your computer with a improper clearing of the cache or something else similar.

      Have you rebooted your computer? Try that.

      Sorry to give such basic suggestions, but as I mentioned above, I cannot troubleshoot the issue very well, if I cannot replicate the issue.

  81. Jay Abiona says:

    I am sorry but your link isnt working as stated. Your business page comes up and then an empty white box appears where I am assuming the review would go but there is no writing in it. I also attached the link you directed to my business url and it didnt work either.

  82. Anonymous says:

    This URL no longer works if I have created a QR code for it to be easily scanned & accessed for mobile users. What should I do?

    • Travis Pflanz says:

      Can you elaborate? When you create a QR code, it does not affect the original URL at all. You can take any URL and create a QR code, then use that QR code and at the same time, still use the original URL.

  83. I’m horrible at getting testimonials out of clients, but I think this would make it easier so I’m going to have to start doing this. But first I need to sort out why I have 2 Google+ pages for my business. One that is ‘Verified’ but the other is using the custom url that I would want. Any ideas?

  84. Is there any for the customer to leave a review without having a gmail account? A Google rep was speaking at a function recently here in Calgary and mentioned it through Google Maps App.

    • Travis Pflanz says:

      That’s a good question, but I don’t believe it is possible anymore to leave an anonymous review on a Google+ page.

      That said, I ALWAYS help clients create a Google account, if they don’t have one. At very least, their account is used for Analytics and Webmaster Tools integration.

      For other types of businesses, consider including a hint note in your review request email saying something to the effect of – “Did you know Android, YouTube Gmail are all Google accounts?”

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