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May 19, 2016 | Shares:

How to Get More Customer Reviews: The Ultimate Guide

You know reviews are important, but actually getting customers to write reviews on your website can be difficult.

Many merchants end up concluding that their customers just don’t want to write reviews.

While it’s true that today’s consumers have notoriously short attention spans and a million other things to do besides write reviews, you can succeed in getting your customers to give input.

Your customers want to write reviews. You just aren’t asking them correctly.

We help over 150,000 businesses get more authentic reviews, so we know a thing about how to get more reviews. For this guide, we studied data from over 2 million reviews to bring you the best proven tactics, from basic tips to advanced strategies.

Whether you’re just starting out or you know how to get customers’ reviews but want to optimize your strategy, here are the top tips to help you master the art of getting customer reviews on your website.

This guide can help those just starting out collecting online reviews or those who already have a solid strategy, but want to know advanced tips for getting more reviews.

Why Reviews & Testimonials Matter for Your Business

Online reviews are super important. A survey of over 600 online shoppers reveals that 77.3% of people say reviews impact their decision to make a purchase.

how reviews impact purchases

Most stores that sell online know they need product reviews as part of their eCommerce marketing plan. But what many people don’t know is that all stores need site testimonials.

Site reviews matter for all businesses – not just eCommerce stores. They should be a part of any eCommerce or local SEO checklist, since they have an impact on SEO.

Also, it’s important that you own your review content and not host them on third-party sites like Google reviews, Yelp, TrustPilot, Facebook, etc.

Why?

Having reviews on your site allows you to rank highest in Google and brings traffic to you.

When people search for reviews of Pura Vida bracelets, they show up first in search results, because they own their review content.

So instead of traffic going to Yelp, traffic comes directly to Pura Vida’s site, making them more likely to purchase. 

pura vida customer reviews

And traffic from reviews is super valuable. Yotpo data shows that review traffic is the most engaged, with shoppers staying longer and navigating furthest into the site.

Traffic coming from reviews has a lower bounce rate and higher page views than traffic coming from Google, Facebook, and Twitter.

Also, owning your content ensures you have complete control over your reviews.

You can protect the authenticity of your reviews, use the content in marketing, and respond back to negative reviews.

How to Get More Customer Reviews for Your Site: The Basics

If you already know how to get customers’ reviews and you’re just looking to take your strategy to the next level, feel free to skip to the next section for advanced tips. These tips are for business owners who are just beginning to collect reviews and need to know how to get started:

1. To Get Customer Reviews On Your Site, You Must Make It Possible

It seems obvious, but it’s important: in order for customers to leave reviews, you need to make it possible for them to write them. That means prominently featuring calls-to-action for customers to leave a review on your site.

Look at how Beardbrand shows a clear call to action to leave a review on every product page:

Screenshot 2016-05-02 11.46.14

2. How to Ask Customers for Online Reviews? Just do it!

Knowing how to ask for a review from your customers doesn’t need to be difficult – you just need to do it!

You need to remind your customers to leave reviews as much as possible. While they may write a review while they’re on your site, the data proves that the best way to get responses is to ask via email after the customers receive their order.

If you want site testimonials, ask customers for them after they’ve interacted with you in some way.

Look at how Expedia asks for reviews after customers have booked a trip.

ask customers for feedback

Another common strategy is asking for reviews after customers have had a customer service question answered.

3. Don’t Forget to Make It Easy, Make It Mobile

The most important way to encourage customers to write reviews is to make it easy for them to write and submit them.

People are happy to contribute content when you take all the work out of it — don’t make them click through to a landing page, don’t ask them to log in — it’s on you as the merchant to bring the form to them and verify their identity.

This is by far the most important step to getting more reviews.

Customer reviews, whether positive or negative, are usually sparked by a moment of passion or inspiration – that light bulb feeling of having something to say that might interest other people.

Make sure that your reviewing process isn’t bogged down with details and multiple steps or else you may lose those customers whose inspiration fades in the face of a complicated reviewing platform.

Companies with simple review processes often have more customer reviews simply because their platform was easily accessible and they engaged the customer before they lost interest.

review product email

This follow-up email harnesses the post-purchase energy, when their opinion of the product is right at the top of their mind, and gives them the momentum they need to post a review.

It also allows you to connect with the customer by keeping the tone of the email warm and lighthearted, and telling the customer you are grateful for their business, which encourages customer loyalty. Make sure it feels personalized, not salesy.

Also, make sure your review-request process is mobile. A lot of businesses are quick to ensure their product pages and checkouts are mobile, but they drop the ball when it comes to asking for reviews.

But it’s important: 56% of Yotpo reviews come from mobile, so you need to make sure your request is mobile friendly.

How can your reviews help you get more sales?
How can your reviews help you get more sales? Learn how reviews supercharge social commerce. Get my free guide

Advanced Tips for Getting More Reviews

Are you already getting reviews but want to take it to the next level? Want to know how to encourage customers to write reviews time and time again?

These advanced tips can help you get an edge on the competition. We looked for trends from data from over 2 million reviews for 150,000 businesses to find out the cutting-edge ways you can get the most reviews.

1. Ask your customers for reviews on Mondays

Conventional wisdom tells you not to send emails on Mondays, but that’s the best day to ask your customers for reviews.

We’ve tested extensively, sending review requests on every day of the week, but there is one clear winner and it’s Monday.

33% more people write reviews on Mondays than on Saturdays (the worst day to ask for reviews).

2. Ask for reviews between 1-3pm

Getting customers to write reviews can be as simple as asking at a smarter time.

Review response rates jump by almost 20% at this time of day — probably because people are just getting back to their desks and emails after lunch and aren’t ready to jump into their work yet.

3. Ask for reviews on expensive products

If someone makes a purchase of multiple products, which one should you ask for reviews on?

A lot of people choose to do this randomly.

Our data shows expensive products get more reviews – so it’s most effective to ask for reviews on the most expensive product.

reviews written conversion

Review conversion rates increase the more expensive a product gets, with products that cost $100 or more getting the most reviews.

4. Learn how to get reviews for products no one wants to review

It’s important to have an even distribution of reviews across your products. It’s not good for sales to just have a few products with tons of reviews, and others with very few.

The data shows that in order to get the most sales from product reviews, you need to consistently get fresh reviews on many of your products.

But that’s easier said than done. Feel like there’s some products that just aren’t getting reviews, no matter how hard you try?

Learn how to get reviews for the products no one wants to review.

7. Get more reviews from your customers by giving rewards

Even if you’ve done everything possible to create the smartest review generation strategy – there is no replacement for giving rewards.

People are more likely to give when they get stuff in return – so give customers that final push by offering them a reward for writing a review.

Some businesses like to do points or raffles. We’ve found that coupons are really effective — one for writing a review, an additional one for sharing it to social networks.

Yotpo Review Facebook Share

This accomplishes a few things:

1) Customers are more likely to write a review

2) You get the explosive publicity of them sharing it with their friends & family (who are likely also in your target market and happy to hear a recommendation from a friend)

Also, they become a repeat customer when they come back to your store to use the coupon (and write another review etc).

Encourage participation by creating customized competitions and campaigns that are fueled and inspired by their reviews – show them that what they’re saying is being heard and make posting a review a small price to pay for a shoutout on social media or their specific idea being put into action.

Integrate traditional reviews into other platforms of user-generated content and engage customers through a variety social media, streamlining your brand and encouraging sharing.

For example, post a photo of your product on Facebook with a few specific questions and ask for opinions.

The casual platform combined with the direct questions will encourage responses from people who may not otherwise reach out. It’s not necessarily about what you ask, but where and how you ask it.

Got Reviews? What to Do Next…

Getting your customers to write reviews is important, but what you do next is crucial to getting the full benefits from them.

So now that you have reviews, how can you make the most of them? These strategies help your reviews go a long way.

Respond to reviewers

Keep in mind that mastering customer reviews is a two-part process: part one is getting the customer to write the review and part two is making sure the customer knows that you heard what they have to say (and that you want to continue the conversation).

Be sure to respond!

This sounds like a no brainer, but when your customers say something to you, whether through a customer review, Facebook comment, Tweet, etc., respond to them as promptly as you can so they know that their input matters and is appreciated.

review commenting slide

There’s no worse customer experience than asking a company a question and receiving radio silence on the other end.

Responding to all customers quickly and authentically makes you look like you’re on top of your game and reminds the customer that behind the company, there are human beings, which helps hone customer trust and loyalty.

It also allows you to further engage and communicate with your customers, which is the point of customer reviews to begin with.

You can even go so far as to quote positive reviews on other social media platforms with a grateful response attached.

The review process empowers your customers, and responding to their reviews validates this empowerment and encourages future reviews.

Upsell when you ask for reviews

When they’re writing a good review, your past customers are actively thinking about the positive customer experience they had with your brand — this is the perfect time to offer another great experience.

It’s not enough to just offer the upsell, you also have to be smart about it to effectively influence consumer behavior.

Look at their past purchases, their behavior, how highly the products are rated and other data to determine the products that specific person is most likely to buy.

yotpo review email with upsell

Data from our stores shows that 7% of the people who click on these smart email upsells end up making another purchase. There are few other things that can increase your eCommerce conversion rate.

Use Negative Reviews to Your Advantage

No company wants to receive a negative review, but the good news is that negative reviews actually improve customer trust and believability.

Negative reviews shown alongside positives ones makes the reviews look authentic and proves to the customer that they haven’t been doctored.

Negative reviews also offer a unique marketing opportunity, when handled correctly. Addressing the negative review and the upset customer behind it, can actually build confidence in your brand.

Make sure to answer the negative review promptly with a personalized response, one that faces their complaint head on and cites specific details, so it doesn’t seem like a standardized response.

Offer a sincere apology and ask for a second chance to have their business, potentially with an incentive. Once the wrong has been righted, ask them to write another review of their experience, which will show potential customers that you are willing to go the distance to take care of your customers and make them feel heard.

Conclusion

Getting customer reviews and knowing the best way to leverage them to drive sales is challenging, but it doesn’t have to be complicated.

Yotpo makes it easy for you to get more authentic customer reviews, leverage them in marketing, and use them to improve conversion rate, SEO, and more.

Learn more about how Yotpo can help you.

Now that you have reviews, what will you do with them? Learn how reviews can boost your Facebook conversion rate by 40%.Download the eBook

 

Aimee Millwood
Aimee Millwood, Blog Manager at Yotpo
Aimee loves hummus and hates misplaced commas.

@aimeemillwood – Follow me

  • Are we able to utilize some of these tips for the automatic “mail after purchase” feature? If not, it would be nice if we could set some of these parameters for “time email sent” and “day sent”. Day sent can be created with something like, “first monday at least 7 days after purchase” or something like that.

    • Hi — thanks for reaching out!

      Yotpo automatically optimizes your Mail After Purchase emails so they go out when they are likely to get the best response : )

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