Each review (along with excellent product images) helps to build a clear image of the product and so the expectation of the product becomes clearer and, in turn, leads to a much happier customer, fewer returns and a higher chance that the new customer will also leave a positive review.
- Improve Your Natural Organic Search Engine Rankings and Increase Traffic.
User generated content in the form of a review increases the amount of text on your webpage, improves your search engine optimisation (SEO) and encourages search engines to recrawl your site looking for the fresh content. This in turn helps your website rank higher.
Your ultimate goal with organic traffic is to appear on the first page of Google for a given search term and reviews can help here enormously.
- Show you Have Nothing to Hide and Build Trust
Highlighting your product reviews gives your website a certain level of transparency and how you respond to any criticisms to a negative review can give the shopper good insight into how efficient your customer service is.
In fact, a certain level of negative reviews with a prompt response and a clear positive resolution shown, are beneficial. If every one of your reviews is good, then this can lead the visitor to doubt the authenticity of them and people will, in fact, search out the negative reviews when they visit a website they don’t know well.
This isn’t generally a cynical motive, they just tend to be more interesting! People want to see what went wrong and how the situation was resolved and handled by the shop owner.
Not only are reviews great for helping complete a sale, informing your customer and improving your search engine rankings, another great reason for reviews is for alerting you to potential design, delivery and quality issues.
If, for instance, your customers were constantly being disappointed by the delivery company you use breaking or taking too long to deliver their items, you may consider using another company to improve deliveries or find better packaging methods.
Or it may be that reviews highlight that the product itself is failing, giving you the opportunity to asses your manufacturing method and make improvements or discontinue the product. In the long run, you want to keep your customers happy and encourage repeat and further sales.
Hopefully, we’ve shown how important it is to have reviews on your website for increasing traffic and encouraging more sales, but, how do you encourage reviews and motivate your customers to leave their feedback?
Realistically, people don’t tend to go out of their way to leave a review no matter how good your product is. That is, unless you ask!
There are various ways you can ask; some website systems have an automated method whereby you can programme the system to email the customer at a predetermined time after delivery and assessment to ask for the review. You can also do this manually – you just need to keep track of ones you’ve already sent so as not to appear pushy by duplicating the request. Whether it’s by email or leaving a postcard in with the product, just go ahead and do it!
Should you reward customers for reviews?
Personally, I would steer away from this approach as you may not get a genuine review and, in some countries, the law may state that you can’t offer incentives in return for a review – you would need to check that out for your country.
Product reviews can help give customers the extra incentive they need to trust your online shop and complete their purchase.
Because shoppers are cynical, letting previous customers shout your praises can help you gain their confidence. Not only that, but you can get increases in website traffic, lower product returns and insights in to your product offerings, delivery and quality.