“Reviews” have become an integral part of the marketing campaign for many companies. However, traditional review sites can be somewhat expensive to maintain, especially as they often require paying for ad placements on a per-post basis. In order to help marketers better understand the pros and cons of reviews, as well as find alternatives if they don’t want to create a full-fledged review site, we’re comparing the most popular review platforms based on cost, functionality, and support.
The Cost Of Building A Reviewing Website
When building a review site, you’ll need to decide how much you’re willing to spend on servers, storage, and bandwidth costs. These are the costs you’ll have to consider whether you opt for a free or paid plan. The good news is that there are free alternatives that don’t require much money to set up.
For example, Bitrix24, a cloud-hosted review platform, offers a free version that allows users to create up to five reviews and save them as drafts. The free plan also provides you with a limited number of domains, emails, and user accounts. Once you start paying for the service, you’ll have to decide whether you want to continue with the plan or go back to the free version.
You might also want to compare Bitrix24 to another popular review platform, Woocommerce. Woocommerce is a free software application that can be downloaded and installed on your server. Once you have it set up, you can use it to launch a fully-functioning review site in less than five minutes. If you decide to go this route, you can get started for free and then decide whether or not to upgrade after you’ve used it to create at least five reviews.
The Pros And Cons Of Reviewing Websites
Now that we’ve covered the basics of building a review website, it’s time to dive into the good and the bad of this type of platform. First, let’s look at the pros. These include the ability to display various media types including video and audio in reviews, the broad range of reviews that can be created, and the fact that reviews can be created by non-specialists (i.e. regular folk like you and me).
On the downside, there’s the fact that many review platforms can be rather complicated to use, especially if you don’t have much experience with websites or online stores. You’ll also need to be tech-savvy in order to understand how to use all the features of these sites effectively. Some of them also have a rather restrictive data policy that could limit the number of reviews you can create before you start paying for the service.
Overall, unless you’re specifically looking for a review platform, it’s rather difficult to justify the cost of building one from the ground up. If cost is no object and you have the time and expertise, you may as well build your own review site.
The Need For Alternative Review Platforms
The fact is that not all businesses are comfortable with the idea of creating a review site. For those that are, it can be a valuable tool for marketing, particularly if you want to target specific audiences or want to show off your expertise in a certain field. If, however, your business is more traditional in nature and you don’t want to create a direct competitor to your website, you may not want to invest in setting up a review site. There are third-party review platforms that can be used to create a hybrid model that combines the benefits of both worlds.
For example, HubSpot, a marketing automation tool, integrates with many online review platforms including Google My Business, Yandex Metacritic, and many more. This allows businesses to create a unified marketing and sales strategy, as well as track performance across all online marketing and social media platforms.
The integration between HubSpot and these review sites gives marketers the ability to see what their digital marketing efforts have accomplished, as well as what they can do to improve their performance. With this type of setup, traditional review sites can function as an extension of your inbound marketing strategy.
Alternatively, you might want to consider using a marketing automation tool that doesn’t integrate with review sites. In that case, you’ll need to rely on the reviews that exist on websites such as Google My Business or Yelp to drive traffic to your business.
In the end, not every business will be able to benefit from reviews, but those that can should certainly try. It doesn’t hurt to have an open mind when it comes to exploring new opportunities that can improve your bottom line.