Consumers Overwhelmingly Trust Online Reviews, Says New FindLaw and Super Lawyers Survey

For the past year both Super Lawyers and FindLaw have been advocating about the value of being proactive when it comes to managing your reputation online. Now there's more proof to that claim.

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According to a new survey from FindLaw and Super Lawyers, 87 percent of American consumers say they trust online reviews to help them choose which local businesses or services will receive their hard-earned dollars. Online reviews are an increasingly common way for people to both learn from other customers and leave comments about their own experiences. Reviews can be found for everything from restaurants and stores to finding a professional, such as a lawyer or doctor.

Trust of online reviews is especially high among Millennials and Gen X'ers (those between the ages of 18 and 51), since 91 percent of them say they trust online reviews. That compares with 83 percent of baby boomers.

So what's the best way to assert your firm in this growing marketplace? When it comes to generating a pool of reviews, a helpful approach is to ask your past and current clients. You should inform the client that the feedback they provide will help to address any shortcomings in your service and improve your practice. But be sure to avoid influencing or coaching clients you want feedback from. Keep it simple and encourage them to describe what working with you as an attorney was truly like.

To learn the full story on why consumers deem reviews so valuable and how law firms can leverage them, download the latest Super Lawyers playbook Building Real Trust in a Virtual World: An Attorney's Guide .