Community is at the heart of all local businesses. Members of your community rely on your business to supply trustworthy, reputable products and services. And you rely on the community to support your local business by making purchases, attending events, and even leaving favorable reviews. But connecting with community members isn’t always easy—especially if your business is brand new or in an off-the-beaten-path location.

Nextdoor is a social network for neighborhoods that lets your local business reach out and let nearby residents know about what you offer. Through Nextdoor, neighbors can interact with each other to discuss what’s happening in your community, find services, and ask for recommendations on the best businesses to support. Since the platform currently covers nearly 90% of all neighborhoods in the United States and has 10 million users, people near you are likely already using Nextdoor to search for businesses like yours.

Have you claimed your Nextdoor Business Page? If not, you could be missing out on a powerful local promotional tool. Here’s how to tell if Nextdoor could be right for your local business.

The Importance of Nextdoor Reviews (Called Recommendations)

While Nextdoor collects reviews, the site prefers to refer to them as “recommendations”. Online customer reviews can be a powerful tool for attracting new customers to your business. Positive reviews can build trust and create the image your business wants in the community.

Earning these reviews or recommendations through Nextdoor can help you connect with the local community and let people know about your business. Here are just a few of the reasons why Nextdoor recommendations may be important for marketing your business.

  • Nextdoor is hyper-local.

Nextdoor focuses on connecting neighbors, so it provides a more local focus than many review sites. For some users, this might make recommendations feel more personal than they do on broader review sites. It also means that those viewing your recommendation are likely primed to buy and very near to your brick-and-mortar location. That means better conversion and a greater chance that they, too, will leave a positive review of your business on the Nextdoor platform.

  • You could be listed as one of the top businesses in your industry.

Nextdoor lists top businesses for each industry in your neighborhood. Since these listings appear at the top of the page when users search for businesses in your category, being listed as one of the top businesses could improve your visibility. It also improves trust in your products and services.

  • You need at least one recommendation to appear in the recommendations section.

Nextdoor offers a recommendations section, which provides links to Business Pages in each category. However, to appear on this page, your business needs at least one recommendation on Nextdoor. If you don’t have any recommendations, users may see listings for your competitors and never know your business exists. They could be right around the corner from your location, ready to buy what you sell, and not realize that you have better customer service than the competition.

  • More recommendations will make you appear higher on the recommendations list.

Nextdoor ranks businesses in its recommendations section based on how many recommendations they have received on the site. This means that if your business receives more recommendations, you have the opportunity to appear higher on the list, increasing your visibility to people using the site.

How to Get More Nextdoor Recommendations

Receiving recommendations through Nextdoor can improve your visibility on the platform by improving your rank in the recommendations section. Here is what you need to do to start getting recommendations on Nextdoor.

  • Claim your Business Page.

If you haven’t already claimed your Business Page, it’s a good idea to do so. Use Nextdoor’s directory to search for your business. Then, claim your listing to start managing it. While you can receive recommendations even if you haven’t claimed your page, claiming it gives you more control over what information appears on the site.

  • Optimize your Business Page.

Include as much information as you can, like your address, contact information, and what you offer. To make your Business Page a bigger draw, add a high-quality profile picture. Optimizing your Business Page can make it more appealing to users. Not only can they confirm that your business is the one they were thinking of, it also shows you care about your presence on Nextdoor. This could encourage users to leave more recommendations.

  • Ask customers for recommendations.

To solicit recommendations through Nextdoor, go to the “Your reputation” tab or click “Get recommendations” in the top right corner. From there, Nextdoor offers the option of promoting your Business Page through email, Facebook, and Twitter.

You can also use your unique link to promote your Business Page through the methods of communication you are already using to communicate with your customers, like your email lists, Facebook page, or text messaging system.

While high-tech solutions are a convenient way to request recommendations, the good old-fashioned approach can also work wonders. Simply ask your customers to leave recommendations on the site. This can add a personal touch that may make them more likely to recommend you.

  • Reply to posts requesting recommendations.

In addition to allowing users to post recommendations directly to a Business Page, Nextdoor also allows users to request recommendations from other users. You can reply to these requests in order to promote your business. You might tag your Business Page and offer details on your business along with information on how the customer can reach out. Just be sure to disclose your personal involvement with the business so you don’t violate Nextdoor’s community guidelines.

Frequently Asked Questions About Nextdoor Recommendations 

  • Can I recommend my own business?

Yes and no. When someone requests recommendations, Nextdoor allows you to reply with information on your business. However, you are required to disclose your involvement of the business. Your friends and family may also mention your business, but they are also required to disclose their relationship.

While you can reply to posts, you can’t initiate posts about your business. Community guidelines prohibit you from posting unsolicited promotional material about your business.

  • How should I handle negative recommendations?

Nextdoor’s system of focusing on recommendations rather than reviews encourages users to leave positive feedback. However, you may still receive some negative comments on your Business Page. If user feedback violates community guidelines, you can contact Nextdoor for it to be corrected or removed. Otherwise, you are welcome to reply to posts or contact the poster through private message in order to attempt to resolve the issue.

  • Who can leave recommendations?

Only Nextdoor members can leave recommendations, so your customers will have to register for the site before they can leave you feedback through it. You could verbally tell customers about the platform or inform them through an email campaign and encourage them to leave a review. Many customers will be very excited to learn about the platform, so it’s definitely worth mentioning and informing them of it’s local search features.

  • Can I offer incentives for recommendations?

As with most review sites, Nextdoor’s guidelines prohibit offering incentives in exchange for recommendations. If Nextdoor finds you offered incentives, content may be removed, you may have privileges suspended, or you may be permanently banned from the site. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to encourage customers to leave a review without paying them—such as amazing customer service.

Nextdoor can be a convenient way to connect with your local community and boost the visibility of your neighborhood business. Getting recommendations on the site can increase your profile and help you attract new customers in your area. If you haven’t yet signed up for a Nextdoor Business Page, what are you waiting for? A better online reputation and hyper-localized reviews are only a few clicks away.

Jennifer Wilson
Jennifer Wilson Strategic Home Services Account Executive

Jennifer Wilson is a home services professional at Podium, the premiere messaging platform that connects local businesses with their customers.

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