How many 5 star reviews do I need Google?

Having a high number of 5 star reviews is extremely important for businesses looking to rank highly on Google. Positive customer reviews act as social proof that your business provides excellent products or services. But how many 5 star reviews should your business aim for?

Why 5 Star Reviews Matter for Google Rankings

Google’s algorithm takes into account many different signals when determining search rankings. One of the most important ranking factors is reviews. Specifically, Google looks for:

  • The number of reviews
  • The average star rating of reviews
  • The credibility and authenticity of reviews

Businesses with more positive reviews, especially more recent reviews, tend to rank higher on Google than competitors with fewer or more negative reviews. This is because Google wants to surface results that it believes will best serve searchers – and positive reviews suggest satisfied customers.

For service-based businesses, Google Places pages with 100+ reviews and an average 4+ star rating have the highest likelihood of ranking on the first page for relevant local searches. But all types of businesses need positive reviews to compete.

How Many 5 Star Reviews are Needed?

As a general rule of thumb, aim for at least 30 to 40 5-star Google reviews. However, the exact number needed will depend on factors like:

  • Your industry and location
  • How many total reviews you have
  • Your competitors’ number of 5 star reviews

Ideally, 80% or more of your Google reviews should be 5-stars. Anything less than a 4-star average rating will significantly hurt your rankings. It takes an increasing amount of 5-star reviews to counterbalance negative reviews and maintain a high average.

Benchmark by Industry

Aim to have at least as many 5-star reviews as your direct competitors. If other businesses in your industry typically have 50+ reviews with a 4.5+ average rating, then you’ll want comparable numbers.

Some examples of benchmarks to aim for by industry:

Industry # of 5-Star Reviews
Restaurants 50-200
Retail Stores 30-100
Salons 20-50
Plumbers 20-50
Chiropractors 30-60

Of course, these numbers are just rough guidelines and depend on your specific location and niche. Track your competitors closely to determine the 5-star review volume you should aim for.

Maintain a High Percentage

In addition to the total number, you want at least 80% of reviews to be 5 stars. Google will pay attention to your overall average rating.

Here is an example of how the percentage of 5-star reviews impacts a business’s average rating:

# of Reviews 5-Star 4-Star 3-Star 2-Star 1-Star Avg. Rating
100 80 10 5 3 2 4.6
100 60 20 10 5 5 4.2

As you can see, the higher percent of 5-star reviews, the higher the average rating will be. Make it a priority to get more 5-star rather than just total reviews.

Strategies to Get More 5-Star Google Reviews

Simply asking customers to leave Google reviews isn’t enough. You need a proactive strategy to build your 5-star review count. Here are some effective tactics:

Offer Incentives

Offer customers a small incentive in exchange for leaving a review. This could be a percentage discount, free gift or entry into a giveaway. Incentives give customers an extra nudge to take the time to leave positive feedback.

Ask at the Right Time

Timing is key when requesting reviews. The best times to ask are:

  • Right after a customer has had an extremely positive experience with your business.
  • After resolving a customer complaint to turn them into a promoter.
  • After a purchase while the experience is still fresh.

Avoid asking as soon as the customer walks in the door or before fully providing your product/service.

Make It Easy

The easier you make it for customers to leave reviews, the more reviews you’ll generate. Options include:

  • Emailing survey links after purchases
  • Texts/emails with direct Google review links
  • Tablets in store for customers to leave reviews before leaving
  • Review buttons on your website

Reduce friction as much as possible to get reviews.

Respond to Reviews

Make sure to respond to all Google reviews, especially negative ones. This shows customers you care, makes negative experiences right and can result in turned detractors into promoters. Responding also makes reviews seem more authentic to Google.

Fix Issues Causing Negative Reviews

Analyze any 1-3 star reviews you get to look for common complaints. Identify issues causing negatives experiences and fix them. This will improve customer satisfaction and in turn increase positive reviews.

Beware of Buying Fake Reviews

Avoid the temptation to buy fake 5-star reviews. Google’s algorithm is very capable of detecting fraudulent reviews. Getting caught buying reviews can land your business in serious trouble:

  • All reviews deleted
  • Severely penalized or removed from rankings
  • Listing flagged as untrustworthy

Focus your effort on proactively getting more real, authentic reviews from satisfied customers. This is the only way to build trust and rank highly over the long-term.

Monitor Your Review Volume Over Time

Getting reviews takes ongoing effort. Aim to acquire more 5-star Google reviews every single month. Track your review volume like any other important business metric.

Tools like Moz and BrightLocal make it easy to chart your monthly review growth. Watch both the total number of reviews and percentage of 5-stars increase.

If your reviews ever stagnate or drop, reevaluate your review generation strategy. You may need to try new review incentive programs or amp up your requests to get back on a healthy growth trajectory.


Google reviews, especially 5-star reviews, significantly influence local search rankings and visibility. While there are no magic numbers that guarantee Google rankings, a good guideline is to aim for at least 30-40 total 5-star reviews. The exact number needed depends on your specific industry, location and competitors.

Focus on regularly generating new 5-star reviews each month. Having over 80% of your reviews be 5-stars will ensure a high enough average rating to satisfy Google. Avoid fake reviews at all costs, as these will only cause your business harm if detected by Google.

With an effective review generation strategy and commitment to customer satisfaction, your business can build up authentic, positive reviews over time. These will separate you from competing brands and help you earn the Google rankings and visibility you desire.

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