How do you choose your holiday accommodation?
We’re sure that you read comments from other guests before you decide since you know they aren’t try to sell you anything, but rather attempting to recommend (or not) a place based on their own experiences.
That’s exactly what happens with your clients – they trust other buyers more than what you tell them about your e-commerce. It’s the foundation of social proof that we’ve talked about in other posts.This is good news for you because you can get a lot out of (and increase profitability from) the faithful opinions your customers share in their products reviews. How exactly can you do that?
We’ll tell you ALL about it. ;)
➡️ What is a product review?
The definition isn’t much of a mystery:
A review is the personal, written, and voluntary opinion of a client in which they share their experiences about a product or service that they’ve previously bought.
That’s to say, clients decide motu proprio – of their own accord – to share their opinion with other users regarding something they’ve bought in your e-commerce.
Their opinions can be shared with you via several channels:
- Posting on social media
- Writing directly on your shop’s website
- Responding to a WhatsApp message or a chat message on your website
- And plenty more
The important thing is that your clients share their opinions and experiences because that is precisely what leads to new buyers. Buying something is a social action.
Don’t believe us? Have a look at the following video:
➡️ Why do you need to have customer reviews in your e-commerce?
There are two overwhelming and undeniable reasons why you should publish your customer reviews in your online shop:
- According to this study, the opinions of other customers influence 90% of consumer buying decisions.
- Another study verified that 90% of consumers trust a review as much as they trust a personal recommendation.
In other words, consumers who check other customers’ opinions are willing to trust them and will prefer shops that publish such reviews.
What’s the moral of this story?
If you don’t publish your customers’ reviews, you’re missing a golden opportunity to get more sales from new potential clients.
In addition to increasing your sales (which is a pretty valid reason), publishing these opinions has more benefits for your business.
1. It increases quality content
This is a great way to increase trust in your business (in addition to the other ideas that we suggest in this post).
Content attracts traffic – and traffic means potential clients. The more you have, the more chances of selling you’ll have.
2. It improves your organic positioning (SEO)
If you have multiple reviews, potential clients will spend more time on your website reading them, which is something Google likes because it increases the Time on Page per user (and it also decreases your bounce rate).
Anything that helps your e-commerce appear in the first position on Google should be quite welcomed, shouldn’t it?
If you’re interested in your SEO, don’t forget to check out our Mega guide for e-commerce, containing lots of ideas to improve it.
3. It helps you detect problematic and highly-valued products
Opinions are a priceless source of information about your clients. They help you:
- To better understand your customers.
- To know why they visit and do or don’t buy in your shop.
- To make some strategic decisions.
For example, if an item has several negative reviews from clients, it’s obvious that something needs improving. On the other hand, if a product receives really good reviews, it’s time to highlight it on your homepage and increase your sales.
The first step toward avoiding negative reviews is to have a comprehensive product card explaining all of its benefits.
➡️ How to get customers to send you reviews
Now that you understand the importance of having reviews from your clients, the next questions is how you can get them to send them.
The answer is easy: ask your customers directly.
But, like most situations, there are different ways of asking. Let’s see some of them.
1. Send an email as soon as they get the product
If you have chosen a good logistics provider (here you have the keys to that) your client will receive the product on time and in good condition.
Send them an email right when you get the delivery confirmation or when you think they’ve had time to try it out. That’s the perfect time to ask for their opinion about the product and service.
They’ll be happy to be asked.
The opening rate for this type of email is easily double that of other types of communications, so they’re likely to answer.
Of course, you need to be polite and make it easy for them. Thank them for their purchase and send them a direct link so they can leave their review with just one click.
2. Offer them a future reward for their opinion
No matter how much they like your product, not everyone is willing to “waste” their time, even if it’s just a minute.
In order to convince them, you can offer them some type of compensation in exchange for their words. Some possibilities:
- A discount on their next purchase
- A coupon to spend in your shop
- Free shipping
- Points that they can earn and spend in exchange for each reviews
Analyze your margins and reward your clients.
3. Share your customers’ photos on your social networks
We’ve seen this before.
It’s about creating a feeling of closeness.
Run away from picture perfect and overly edited photos. Potential customers will think you’re trying to sell them an artificial image of your product and won’t trust you.
There are several options depending on the social network you’re using. In general, the more creative and in line with your products and clients, the better they’ll work.
For example, have a look at the number of #MyAdidas posts:
If you have an “Instagrammable” brand or product, create a specific hashtag and ask your buyers to use it in their posts – you’ll surely find some worthy reviews. ;)
Those reviews could even be added to your product card. ;)
4. Respond to negative reviews with empathy and solutions
People are undoubtedly more driven to share their experiences when they are negative, so be prepared to receive negative reviews.
In fact, if they were all positive, many users would think they were completely fake. That’s why it’s much more credible to publish both your positive and negative reviews.
A negative review is not a mistake, but an opportunity to improve when handled properly.
There are two main factors:
A. Be grateful for all reviews
If you answer properly, it’s a good way to strengthen your brand image because you show that you care about all of your customers’ opinions, not just those who are already happy.
Don’t give in to the temptation to ignore or delete bad reviews.
Avoiding the problem will only make it bigger.
B. Offer solutions
If you get a negative review, that customer must have had a problem.
- Did the product arrive late?
- Was the package damaged?
- Did they receive the wrong item?
Before you say reply, double-check the case to find out what happened exactly. This way you’ll be able to provide the client with a better response.
After that, you need to apologize – it’s not a big deal if you’ve made a mistake, is it? And then, try to make up for it somehow.
- Invitations to events
- A visit to your physical shop
- A personalized product
Sometimes a personal product is better than money. Be creative. ;)
Once you start the process, it’s better to carry it out in private.
➡️ You already have your customers’ reviews – show them to the world!
Now that you’ve managed to gather their opinions, it’s time to decide how you’re going to make them visible in your online shop.
Perhaps the website with the most published customer reviews published, Amazon, comes to mind.
Indeed, Amazon is the most visited marketplace to check other clients’ reviews, even if the purchase isn’t completed on that website.
But Amazon isn’t the only website that can show its customer reviews.
Here you have some ideas to share them on your own e-commerce site.
1. Use a plugin within your shop
There are many plugins that allow you to automatically gather customer reviews.
For example, YotPo integrates with the main online shop platforms and offers a free version. Have a look at some examples used by our clients:
Dosfarma uses a more visual version with a star scale that shows the average value obtained for a given product.
In the UK, our client ITS also incorporates some testimonials written by the customers themselves.
No matter which option you prefer, the idea is for them to be shown below each product in your shop.
2. Hire an external opinion platform
There are specific platforms for collecting customer opinions that also guarantee their authenticity. One example is Trusted Shop.
Assuming you don’t have such a large volume of reviews, the previous options will be more than enough to get started.
3. Extra trick: Google reviews
Google reviews or reviews on social networks are not exactly product reviews. Instead, they are often related to the company or brand as a whole.
However, they have the same value as product reviews and can influence the buying decision of a client on the fence.
And they also come with other advantages:
- They are free.
- They help positioning (if they are positive).
In order to get these reviews, you need to register your business with Google My Business. Don’t worry if you don’t have a physical shop, there’s a specific option for virtual businesses.
You won’t have to include a real address and it will still help your positioning.
➡️ It’s time to ask your clients
You’ve already seen that “one sale can lead to another” if you get (and post!) good reviews from your customers.
We know that you have a good product, so the next step is to get confirmation from your buyers.
Get to work and prepare to receive orders!!