Importance of customer reviews for E-commerce
Studies show that around 95% of customers check online reviews before making a decision to purchase.
With the power to influence the customer’s behaviour, it is important for the company to build a trustworthy and desirable reputation through their customer reviews.
Online reviews put the business on the map; without them, customers will likely question the credibility of the company.
There are many catfish companies selling online, which customers are much more aware of now. They therefore depend on other customers’ reviews for assurance.
In our recent Q&A with Ryan Kulp, founder of Fomo, the world’s first social proof marketing platform, he rightly said that “nowadays online shoppers expect reviews. No reviews = buyer beware”.
Customers trust reviews in the same way they would personal recommendations, so they are that much more likely to shop with a company when they have that reassuring recommendation from others.
As a result of improving trust of the brand, positive reviews boost sales and consequently increase business growth.
Allowing customers to leave feedback establishes a relationship and direct conversation between them and the brand, so they feel more engaged with the company and are more likely to remain loyal in the future.
When this loyalty is evident in the online reviews, the customers are fundamentally doing the marketing for the business.
Social proof marketing (as it is referred to as) encourages new customers and becomes a snowball effect; the more customers the company gains, the more reviews they are able to generate and so on and so forth.
Social proof apps can be of great assistance for a business that wants to harness the maximum potential of social proof marketing.
There are many features that can be used to help improve conversion such as pop-up notifications that track the number of visitors, recent sales and popular products, as well as recent reviews left by customers.
Something that should not be shied away from is that not all customers will leave positive reviews. Although no one enjoys receiving criticism, this can be a great opportunity for smoothing out any ruffles.
It is important for the company to handle negative reviews carefully, and to be honest and admit their faults.
Reviews provide valuable feedback, which can help the company find and resolve issues, thereby making the whole experience better for customers in future.
As Ryan says: “Too many business owners focus on the star count of their reviews, and not enough on the useful feedback written beneath them”.
By offering the customer a resolution, the company will be able to highlight their strengths and regain the customer’s trust. It is a chance for the brand to improve and optimise.
To ensure customers leave a meaningful message the brand wants published about themselves, it is naturally the responsibility of the brand to facilitate this.
Our Q&A with Ryan was instructive, as we came to understand insider tips for the best practice for asking customers to leave reviews. The fact that the company is essentially asking the consumer to work for free when asking for a review was brought to light.
Steps such as requiring the customer to login, or having to go through a long-winded clickfunnel can be a deterrent, therefore it is imperative to make the process as easy as possible for the consumer.
Furthermore, it is beneficial to create a structure for the customer to give feedback, rather than leaving them with a blank text field. This way, the company is able to guide their answers and achieve more specific and contextual feedback.