You feel like eating out but don’t know where to go. What do you do?
Naturally, you end up Googling nearby restaurants.
Before you know it, you’re reading the reviews left by other customers on the place’s Google My Business card.
If it has a lot of negative comments (or no comments at all), you’ll most likely rule it out.
On the other hand, if it has mostly positive reviews and most of the comments say the food was delicious, then you’ll most likely give that restaurant a shot.
So what’s this got to do with e-commerce?
Well, quite a lot.
Before buying one of your products or choosing your shop over a competitor, users will go through the comments left by previous customers.
That means these reviews can help you increase your sales if you use them properly. ;)
Want to know how?
Read on and you’ll find out.
👉 Customer reviews: What they are and why you should use them
In the intro, we mentioned the comments left on product cards since they’re the most typical example of customer reviews.
But there’s more to them than that.
In reality, a review can be any opinion given by users about your products or the service received from your online store.
- Reviews of your products
- Thank-you or complaint emails
- Reviews on your Google My Business card (if you don’t own a physical shop, that’s no problem – there’s a specific option for online businesses)
- Comments on your social media
Basically, anything you can use as social proof.
Later in this post, we explain different ways to get the most out of these reviews.
Before that, however, we’re going to give you a few reasons why using them as part of your sales strategy is simply a must (in case you aren’t doing it already).
✅ 1. Why it’s so important to show your customers’ opinions
Check out this figure.
It’s estimated that about 90% of users check the reviews of a product before making a purchase online.
Therefore, if your product cards have no comments, 9 out of every 10 clients will be unsure whether your product is what they’re actually looking for (so they’ll probably end up visiting another online shop to find out).
And that’s not all.
➡️ A. They build trust
You’re about to buy a computer but don’t even know where to start.
You start by surveying your friends and acquaintances to find out what they have and how those machines have worked for them.
After listening to them, you make your choice.
Your reasoning is that if a particular brand or model’s been good for them, it should be good for you too, right?
As it turns out, reviews and comments in online shop fill the same function as a “friend’s advice” – even though they were left by strangers.
According to this study by Wyzolw, 90% of people agree that the reviews made by other clients about a certain business instill more confidence than anything that business says about itself or its products.
➡️ B. They help users make up their mind
Remember when we told you about the stages of the customer journey?
In the second stage, consideration, the client knows what type of product they want (a computer, for example), but they’re still comparing different models.
It’s at this point that they start asking friends, reading contrastive analyses and, yes, checking the opinions of other clients as well.
➡️ C. They allow you to spot slip-ups
Finding a negative review by one of your clients is daunting, we know.
But you should look at it from a different angle. ;)
Those negative reviews are indicative that something’s wrong with your online store – whether it has to do with a defective group of products or a problem related to your customer service.
In general, they could stem from anything hindering the customer experience in your online store (and, consequently, squandering sales).
Don’t worry – we’re going to cover how to handle negative reviews in just a minute.
👉 6 ideas to turn customer reviews into new sales
We’ve just covered what customers leave reviews about and why it’s crucial to integrate them into your sales strategy.
Now let’s see how to make the most of them. ;)
✅ 1. Feature testimonials on your homepage
It’s the most basic strategy, but it still yields good results.
Testimonials are those short paragraphs where clients give their opinion on one of your products or the service they received from your online shop.
They’re typically accompanied by the customer’s name and a picture, as that makes them more credible. And if you can get one of your clients to send you a video (instead of just text), even better!
In fact, according to the same study by Wyzolw, video testimonials are even more credible and allow clients to get a clearer picture of what the product is like.
✅ 2. Include success cases in your email sequence
We told you about this in our other post on how to create your autoresponder.
The idea is to include the story of a customer in those automated emails users get after joining your email list.
This type of email generates trust in your products and in your brand.
✅ 3. Activate rich snippets
Rich snippets (which we told you about here) are code fragments that allow you to categorize the information on your website.
And there’s even a rich snippet for reviews.
So when one of your products pops up as a search result on Google, the average score given by users is displayed alongside it.
On top of serving as social proof, it also helps your website stand out from the rest of the search results, increasing your click through rate. ;)
✅ 4. Verified purchase reviews
Take a look at this image of a review on Amazon.
As you can see, next to the client’s comment, there’s a little label indicating that they actually purchased the product.
Something as simple as that is guaranteed to instill confidence in other possible customers.
And the best part is that it can be implemented quite easily. ;)
The plugin or extension allowing you to include this functionality will depend on the CMS you’re using.
✅ 5. Add reviews to your internal search engine
In general, most online shops only include reviews in their product cards.
But there’s just one problem with that.
If for some reason a user doesn’t make it to your product card, their chances of making a purchase goes way down. )
And that’s why we decided to include the possibility of adding reviews to Doofinder search results (with verified purchases as well).
If that sounds good to you, click here to get your 30-day free trial.
✅ 6. Assign ranges to your clients
You’ll want to take note of this one. ;)
Some online stores, such as Amazon, give different “scores” to the clients that leave a lot of reviews.
We’re sure you’ve seen them thanks to the little badge next to their name.
And this has different benefits:
- It instills confidence: Being a very active reviewer gives them a certain “authority” because it looks like they know what they’re talking about.
- It gives your clients another reason to leave a review: It becomes a sort of competition (which is in line with the trendy concept of “gamification”).
- It fosters client loyalty: Being promoted to a higher rank can encourage them to keep shopping in your online store.
Besides, if those with higher ranks are rewarded (with special discounts, for example), the effect will be greater.
👉 What if I have negative reviews?
Even the best online shop in the world gets a negative review every now and then.
And, in most cases, it may not even be your fault.
You may have received a bunch of defective products or there may have been a logistics problem on account of the operator that inevitably affected the shipment.
Regardless of the reason, it reflects badly on you (and it’s you getting the bad review either way).
So whenever something happens, we recommend this:
- First of all, thank them for their review and apologize: Any problem that hasn’t been dealt with properly can have a negative impact on your brand image (article in Spanish). That’s why you should apologize to that particular customer and make it clear that you’re going to fix the issue. And if it’s a public review (i.e., it’s displayed on the product card or your social media) forget about deleting it. All that leads to is an even angrier customer. ;)
- Study the case and offer a solution: Try to fix the issue as quickly as possible. For example, send a replacement if the product was faulty or resend the product if it’s late and hasn’t arrived yet.
- Improve your service: You may need to be more careful when creating your product cards or change your logistics operator. It may even have been an internal mistake (for example, an inadequate answer given by the customer service department). The key is to find the origin of the problem and make improvements so it doesn’t happen again.
Just think about it – handling an issue promptly and professionally can turn an upset customer into one of your best brand ambassadors. ;)
👉 Are you going to start using your customer’s reviews as sales arguments?
Because if you’re not, you’ll end up missing out on many opportunities to get new clients, as you’ve now seen. ;)
Put these tips into practice if you want to see just how much your sales take off.