3 Ways to Encourage More Positive Customer Reviews
In an era when e-Commerce has exploded, the importance and value of positive customer reviews have never been higher. While it can be hard to beat a direct recommendation from a friend or family member, it is worth appreciating that one single online review will be seen by thousands if not millions of your target customers. With 85% of customers saying that they trust an online review as much as a review from a friend, the power of a positive online review should not be underestimated.
In this post, we discuss methods to encourage your existing customers to advocate for your brand online.
1. Ask at the appropriate moment
To get the best results, you need to ask your customers to leave reviews at the most appropriate time and at a point that makes it easiest for them. When a customer arrives at your website, they shouldn’t immediately be prompted by a pop-up to leave a review as they probably haven’t yet made a purchase or formed an opinion on your brand. Getting the timing wrong of requests to leave a review could have negative repercussions with more negative reviews left about your business. You also don’t want to ask for a review as soon as a customer has made a purchase. You want to give them time to use the product or service they purchased so the review can be well informed. The best time to ask for a review is when a customer has likely had a positive experience with you. Directly following repeat purchase; after they have given you a good NPS rating in a survey; if they have spent a significant amount of time browsing your website; or after they have referred another customer to your business would all be appropriate moments to ask for them to take the time to leave a review.
2. Make it easy for the customer
Customers might have different opinions on how, where and why they would like to leave a review, so it is necessary to give them options. Some might not be comfortable setting up an account to leave a review on a site like TrustPilot, but if they have an existing Google account, leaving a Google Review might suit them better. Or some may prefer posting about a brand on social media rather than leaving a review under a product on your website. You need to consider the many varieties of personal preferences that exist if you want to maximise the potential for more reviews. Offering a wide range of options also means that there are more opportunities for new customers to see reviews of your products online.
You can also make leaving a review worth a customer’s while by offering them a token of gratitude in return. Whether it’s a chance to enter a competition, a percentage off their next purchase or a freebie of some sort, any incentive is certain to boost the number of reviews you receive. This is a great way to improve the number of reviews you receive but won’t significantly improve the quality of those reviews as many will leave quick reviews to get access to the incentive. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it is important to consider how this will affect your presence online.
3. Respond to reviews
Responding to reviews shows that you care about your customers’ experiences, opinions and feedback. When you engage with reviews, either by thanking customers for their positive feedback or trying to alleviate a negative experience, you show potential and existing customers that you are listening. A study from Harvard Business Review found that online ratings increased for businesses that responded to both positive and negative comments online. They found that consumers who had read past responses from a company were less likely to leave short reviews than consumers who had not. Unlike offering an incentive, this is likely to improve the quality more than the quantity of your reviews. When your existing customers see that when they leave a review, they aren’t just doing a brand a favour, but see it as an opportunity to engage with a brand, they will be more interested in leaving feedback.
CX Index Social Advocate™
Social Advocate™ automates the process of turning your most satisfied customers into online brand advocates. The tool enables you to better engage with your customers to drive authentic positive content from customer feedback onto the popular review and social media platforms. It has an incredibly strong track record of enhancing online reputation in both the quality and quantity of reviews. You can get in touch to learn more here.