88% of customers trust reviews in the same way they rely on personal recommendations. Product reviews can be a powerful and accessible tool for marketers to generate more sales for an online store. Collecting more reviews has become one of the crucial key performance indicators (KPIs) for ecommerce marketers as it can be a direct indicator of customer engagement and satisfaction. However, setting aside a budget for this doesn’t generate conversions as directly as paid advertisements might; marketers must know how to collect reviews.
1. Automate the process of gathering reviews
As a jack of all trades, juggling dozens of channels and managing customer engagement can be a real challenge for an ecommerce marketer. While many of these aforementioned tasks require a personal touch, review gathering is best left automated. With TurnTo, ecommerce marketers can collect customer reviews through a single, efficient platform and set them live on-site with just a click. One-click authentication incentivizes customers to write reviews straight from product emails, which are personalized to increase submission by 20-30%.
TurnTo’s automated capabilities allow Morphe to combine reviews with visual UGC in a live gallery.
You can also use this tool to utilize the power of user-generated content (UGC) and get your customers to add their photos of your product in use. This tactic will help your reviews look even more credible. Let’s examine the power of UGC with the next tip!
2. Embrace Authenticity with Visual Reviews
Customer photos taken and shared on social media can be more effective at generating new sales than professional, branded content on your product pages. But beyond those Insta-worthy shots, customers will also share informational photos that help other shoppers understand the product in ways studio photography can’t. Those visual reviews play a critical role in the customer journey. Where’s the proof? 84% of millennials report that UGC on company websites has influence on what they buy, with consumers consistently rating UGC more trustworthy and memorable than professional photos.
Let’s take a look at some ways online stores use UGC in the form of visual reviews.
Nixon lets customers share their own photos alongside a review once they’ve received the product.
Studio photography still has a place on product pages, but customers seeking a more authentic understanding of the product may need more information before buying. Authentic customer photos also help set expectations on the quality and use of the product, which can ultimately lower return rates.
3. Incentivize Customers with a Referral Program
Reviews add untold value to your product pages. Using the right incentives to reward your loyal customers for leaving reviews can encourage otherwise unengaged shoppers to become brand advocates.
Ensuring that the reviews remain authentic no matter the incentive is critical – the goal should always be to increase the total quantity of reviews and solicit the most honest customer feedback. When designing a rewards program, ensure that the language is neutral. This doesn’t mean you should abstain from sending promo codes as a sincere “thank you” for a job well done. Just do it after the customer has left the review! This way, you will get your customers to speak their minds while sharing a positive review.
4. Ask for Reviews in a Post-Purchase email
Collect product reviews with emails and use automated campaigns to reach customers at a time when they have already experienced the value from using the product.
Again, automating these types of emails is key to ensuring a timely follow-up with customers. With TurnTo, you can easily configure your post-purchase emails to engage with customers when it makes sense to request a review. Looking to go beyond a text review? You can also use post-purchase emails to solicit visual reviews and other valuable UGC from customers interested in engaging further with your brand.
5. Showcase Reviews at Key Points During the Customer Journey
Reviews can make or break a sale, but where they land in the customer journey can also be pivotal. Seeing a review before understanding how the product works might confuse some buyers, but for higher-priced goods, seeing the price before a review might encourage price comparison. Knowing when to showcase product reviews can be tricky as it often varies by the brand, product and shopper. The commonly agreed upon placement is on the product-page, below the standard product information and studio photos. But some brands have seen success placing their reviews over UGC, in advertisements, and in abandoned-cart emails.
The best way to know is by testing different placements, and tracking engagement and conversion along the way. Ultimately, this will help determine how your audience is responding to reviews.
More Reviews, More Authenticity
The more reviews you’re able to collect, the more proof you’ll be able to provide for potential buyers. After all, adding satisfied customers to your brand with the help of your existing customers is a marketer’s dream. Don’t be afraid to test new incentives and new ways of promoting your reviews—ultimately, the opinion that matters the most is that of your current and future customers.
Pixlee TurnTo Contributor
Pixlee TurnTo welcomes contributed content from leading marketers, influencers and ecommerce experts.