By Emmanuel Raheb
Emmanuel Raheb is the CEO of Smart Age Solutions, a digital ad agency and coveted Premier Google Partner. Contact him at
In a world of technological interconnectivity, you would never dare not to have a website.

With the rise of online shopping and our passionate love affair with search engines, a strong internet presence is essential for the prosperity of any business, big or small. So much so that it’s pretty well understood that the lack of one is just as dated as calling an operator or using dial-up internet service.

So why, we ask, is the importance of online reviews not as ubiquitous as having your own URL?

Even if you have a 100,000-square-foot building in the center of a major city with consumers singing your praises outside your door each day, nothing beats the reach of the internet.

To help you, below are a few reasons why online reviews are a must for your business this year.

1. As social media continues to define a new way of communicating, it also changes the idea of who qualifies as a friend, or a stranger for that matter. The internet allows us to befriend someone we’ve never met before and find some sort of connection with them.

This especially relates to the idea of online reviews. As we read them, we instantly channel our involvement in the community of the internet and relate to the writers of those reviews; we develop trust in their opinions. All of a sudden, a complete stranger impacts our decision to patronize, or walk away from, a company.

Just like it takes a village to raise a child, it takes the internet to raise a business, so why not join in and help it grow?

2. Given the importance an internet presence has on a business, it also, first and foremost, qualifies the legitimacy of your business.

With companies popping up every second, it’s hard sometimes to trust that the small online company you’re giving your card information to is real. We’ve all seen online examples of companies with no photos or personal touch to their internet presences and have been suspicious.

But the support of online reviews documenting real experiences helps let consumers know that you’re an official business making official transactions.

3. With businesses increasing in number every day, there’s no shortage of options for consumers.

And that’s where reviews come into play, as they’re a great way to set yourself apart from competitors.

While your services or products may be similar to another local business, each customer is unique and, by extension, each customer experience is also unique.

Opening yourself up to online reviews allows those good experiences to be recorded and could be the reason why your business gets chosen over another.

4. Another obvious reason to open up your business to review platforms is that it increases your visibility.

Oftentimes, when searching for any type of business, some of the first pages that pop up right below the company’s actual website are review sites.

Search engine algorithms understand their importance and rank them up high for consumers to easily find.

Having your business open to one or a couple review platforms expands your presence and allows for multiple URLs to be a representation of your work, not just your website.

Search engines favor original content, and as personal reviews are as original as they get, they’re a great way to boost your rankings in their algorithms.

5. Most importantly, however, is that online reviews are free marketing.

In this age of endless blogs and Instagram posts, it’s pretty obvious: people love sharing their opinions.

And we, as consumers hungry for personal stories, love reading others’ opinions. So why not take advantage of that and join the club?

Emmanuel Raheb is the CEO of Smart Age Solutions, a digital ad agency and coveted Premier Google Partner. With nearly 18 years’ digital marketing and e-commerce experience, Raheb is passionate about helping and strategically growing national jewelry brands and local retailers alike. Contact him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

TAGS:   Columnists
Get the Daily News >
National Jeweler

Fine Jewelry Industry News

Since 1906, National Jeweler has been the must-read news source for smart jewelry professionals--jewelry retailers, designers, buyers, manufacturers, and suppliers. From market analysis to emerging jewelry trends, we cover the important industry topics vital to the everyday success of jewelry professionals worldwide. National Jeweler delivers the most urgent jewelry news necessary for running your day-to-day jewelry business here, and via our daily e-newsletter, website and other specialty publications, such as "The State of the Majors." National Jeweler is published by Jewelers of America, the leading nonprofit jewelry association in the United States.