Nowadays, it's almost expected to be asked to leave a review when purchasing goods and services and they certainly go a long way when it comes to influencing our buying decisions. How many times have you booked a 1-star hotel or restaurant? The principles are exactly the same when it comes to short term rentals and shared accommodation, so why leave it to chance?
One of the best things about Google reviews is it's FREE! All you need to do is set up a free Google account then as part of your checkout process, whenever your tenants check out, ask them to leave you a Google Review. Now, provided you have given great service and have nice clean rooms in your shared accommodation, you should start to see a steady stream of reviews trickling through and these reviews will be listed under your company, which means that whenever someone does a Google search and your business is listed in the results, they can see that you are a good landlord and have previous tenants shouting this from the rooftops.
There will always be an element of fear when it comes to reviews, fear of getting a bad review and how it can look to potential tenants. There are a few things you can do to mitigate the risks and the by far the easiest way is simply not to ask anyone who was not happy with the service you have provided. This is a little bit controversial I know, but it doesn't make sense to ask a disgruntled exiting tenant to leave you a review if you know if it's likely to be bad. In an ideal world, all your tenants will give you five stars and say that you're the best landlord in the world, but let's face it, things happen that are outside of our control and whilst you may have moved mountains to fix it, some people will forever hold a grudge.
One other great thing about Google reviews is unlike other reviews sites, they actually improve search rankings and overall SEO efforts. While there are a lot of factors involved in search rankings, online customer reviews can be a strong signal to search engines that communicates trustworthiness and authority.