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Trust isn’t given, it’s earned.
Customers face a plethora of choices every day, and online reviews is one of the biggest resources they often turn to. Not only do reviews acquire new customers, but they also retain and validate current customers. Generating reviews is imperative to ecommerce businesses’ success. Even negative reviews have value.
All statistics prove the value of consumer reviews, but how do you get them and then use them? Make your ecommerce shop a success by learning how.
Customer reviews shape the success of ecommerce stores
No one likes wasting money, and when deciding to buy something, you want to ensure you’re getting the best bang for your buck. This is why reviews are so crucial to an effective ecommerce strategy. If you don’t believe me, check out these mind-blowing customer review stats that prove your need to budget for customer reviews.
91% of 18-34 year olds treat reviews as personal recommendations
This younger demographic is just beginning to form brand loyalties, so ensuring your products or services have many quality reviews is important to the future of your ecommerce shop. Personal recommendations are the most trusted type of recommendation and the fact that the majority of 18-34 year olds treat them as such is a huge indicator of success.
93% of shoppers say reviews affect purchasing decisions
Shoppers browse the internet in search of a solution to a pain point. This solution could be as simple as a poster for bare walls or a baby crib for a soon-to-be-born child. When on the hunt for anything, reviews are going to sway a shopper to either buy your products or look elsewhere.
Customers can spend up to 31% more because of excellent reviews
No one wants to spend money and time buying something if it doesn’t live up to the promise. Excellent reviews helps you build customer trust.
94% of shoppers say negative reviews make them avoid a business
Have you ever seen someone taste something, make a face, and then offer it to you? You automatically say no (I hope). The same concept goes for negative reviews. If someone else didn’t like the product or service, you’ll most likely want to avoid the same experience.
How to get reviews for your online business
Now that you understand the importance of reviews, it’s time to talk about how you actually get the reviews for your online business. This tends to be the toughest part and may take some effort. With these seven tips, you’ll be raking in the reviews, and ultimately growing your ecommerce business.
1. Target recent customers
Tapping into recent customers who just received their product is a great place to start. Send a review request a day or two after they receive their package. If that’s too hard to configure, send a review request a week or two after sending out their package.
2. Send review reminders
If a new customer hasn’t left a review after the initial review request, send them a reminder saying that you would love to hear their opinion of your product and service. This will show them that you really care about their feedback. Keep these review requests to two at most, you won’t want to push away the customer.
3. Offer review submissions on product pages
Your product page should show reviews very publicly. Provide an option for customers returning to your product page to leave reviews. You can even insert an order number form to make sure they have actually bought the product in the past.
4. Ask specific questions
If you have a review form that asks multiple questions, the best questions to ask customers include:
- How would you rate our service from 1-10?
- How would you rate our communication from 1-10?
- How would you rate the product from 1-10?
5. Survey customers
Instead of a review form, you can always add a pop-up chatbot on your website to collect surveys from customers.
6. Send SMS notifications
Many websites ask customers to opt-in for SMS notifications, this way you can send them text reminders to review products. But remember, don’t send more than a couple!
7. Get Google reviews or Yelp reviews
Do you have a brick-and-mortar store that works alongside your ecommerce shop? If so, setting up Google Store or Yelp reviews can really boost your business.
Handling negative reviews and feedback
Negative reviews aren’t a death sentence. Instead, they’re an opportunity, and this is when your online reputation management comes into play. A negative review might help you pinpoint a change that needs to be made or a function that could be streamlined to better serve your customers. Sure, negative reviews happen and aren’t fun, but if you assess the problem with empathy and implement a solution, your ecommerce shop will come out better and stronger.
1. Assess the problem
Read the review, share it with your team, and see what the problem is, it could be:
- Product malfunctions
- Shipping errors/time
- Customer support responsiveness
2. Determine the solution
Come up with a solution to what the customer complained about. If there’s nothing you can do about it upfront, tell the customer you’ll look into the problem and update them on the information you’ve received. If the carrier delivers a late shipment, contact them and get to the bottom of it.
3. Respond and offer the solution
Share your solutions either publicly or in a private response to the reviewer.
4. Do something about the problem
If you promised the reviewer you would look into something/fix something, actually do that!
5. Ask the newly satisfied customer to update their review
If the customer’s complaint has been dealt with, ask them if they would consider updating their review. Thankfully sites like Yelp have options for customers to come back and update a review if something has been improved.
6. Ask what else you can do
Finally, let the customer know that they can reach out to you whenever they feel like they need a problem assessed. Ask what else you can do for them!
4 tips on using reviews for more sales
At the end of the day, sales are what drives a business. Once you generate reviews, you need to use them to your advantage to increase sales. Here are four tips on how to leverage reviews:
1. Make reviews public
Reviews should always be public on your website pages.
2. Highlight top reviews in your product information
Highlight the top reviews in your product descriptions if possible.
3. Use top reviews in advertisements
You can even highlight quotes (with the author’s permission) in advertisements to show that customers love your products!
4. Share great reviews on social media
Share reviews on social media if you have social accounts. This is the easiest for of social commerce and can instill trust in customers.
Five stars for you
Now that you know the importance of customer reviews, how to get them, steps in handling negative reviews, and using reviews to drive sales, you’re ready to bring it all to life for your ecommerce shop. Success is in your future if you leverage reviews to your advantage.