Every time consumers buy something online, they are often bombarded with questions. From left, center, and right.
"What's on your mind?"
"Was the experience good for you?"
"Did we do okay?"
"Did you need anything else?"
"What do you think of our product?"
When you request reviews from your customers, you might sound pushy.
Your customers may find you annoying. Or worst... they might start to lose interest in your brand. Forever!
And here are a couple of facts you need to know...
Gaining online reviews can make or break your eCommerce business.
After all, 9 out of 10 consumers read them before buying a product.
And the way you ask for a review matters a lot.
You have to get your customers' attention the right way and at the right time.
When you do, not only will you receive vital customer feedback...
You will also enhance customer experience and boost conversions.
Hearing that, you might be wondering...
Why Is It Beneficial To Ask For Online Reviews?
From your own shopping experience, you probably already know the power of customer reviews.
I myself don't buy anything unless I read a few reviews.
With online reviews, you can...
Boost Your Online Reputation
Your friend can't say enough good things about a local business they recently visited. You trust that their positive feedback holds up.
The same is true for positive reviews on your eCommerce site. Those five-star ratings from your satisfied customers bring credibility to your business.
More importantly, it shows social proof to potential customers that visit your brand.
With review requests, you can also...
Have Wider Reach
When you properly ask for a review at the perfect time, you can create brand promoters out of happy customers.
You can encourage your satisfied customers to write reviews. They can become your advocates through word-of-mouth marketing on other sites like Google reviews.
Ask for a review, and you can...
Increase Your SERPs Rank
Do you know who loves reviews more than potential customers? Search Engine Ranking Pages.
Reviews account for 10% of how Google Search and other search engines rank their results. That means that all your reviews and ratings are taken into account.
And the more reviews you have, the better your search rankings on SERPs. It can bring you more traffic. Thus, more sales!
It's important to keep these benefits in mind as you collect reviews. Now onto the question...
Where Can You Ask For Reviews?
Requesting reviews is a part of your marketing efforts. So think of the communication channels you use with your existing customers. Some of these are:
- Website, such as a review page
- Via phone
- Through email
- Social media platforms
- Review platforms
- On receipts
Remember, you can't just ask for reviews willy-nilly. When you do, you might end up with negative reviews that can affect customer relationships.
No matter what channel you use to ask for reviews, let's go over the best practices that can help you get the best response rates.
So, here is...
How To Ask Customers For Reviews
1. Send Out Emails At The Appropriate Time
And when you ask for a review through email, you need to know the sweet spot when to send it.
If you send a review request email too quickly, a customer may haven't had the chance to try out their recent purchase. And if you left it alone for too long, they would forget all about it.
Here are some tips to keep in mind when you send review request emails:
- If you offer monthly subscription boxes or any monthly services, do an email blast at the end of the month.
- Be aware of the shipping period. Make sure you give your customers some time to check out your product.
- If you offer products, email a review request within a week or two. It will give your customers some time to use your product.
- Post-purchase emails can be immediately sent out. This is the confirmation of purchase you usually send your customers. New customers can leave reviews about their experience on your website.
- Do tests with time frames. Figure out which time of the day gets you more reviews.
- To be more efficient, you can automate your review collection email. Use a trusted review app for better customer feedback collection.
Keep asking for reviews directly via email and...
2. Personalize Your Emails
With review requests, you can also further build your relationship with all your customers.
Nobody likes receiving monotonous and cold-sounding emails. So, address your customers by their first names (even on the subject line). You can also sign off with your first name or your customer service representative's name.
When you do, it will make your customers feel special. Such great service will be reflected when they post reviews.
Also, don't forget to mention the product they recently purchased. It will add extra personalization to your review request email template.
Lastly, keep your review requests short and sweet.
Charlie Hustle does personalization well on their review request template. Check out their short review request for a customer.
Up next, take your customer experience to the next level and...
3. Create A Unique, Brand-Consistent Review Request
This applies to all the channels we talked about. You have to get creative through email, landing pages, or social media.
When a customer reads a stiff and vague copy when you ask for reviews... Well, it would not bode well for your online reputation. Your customer would not be convinced to leave an online review.
So liven it up! Show your brand identity to it with your brand colors and dynamic graphics. Use the voice of your brand in the copy itself.
Don't be afraid to use emojis to create a friendlier tone. Or better yet, include memes or trending pics to get in touch with your new customers.
I particularly like local businesses when it comes to how creative they are when they ask for a review through their marketing strategy.
Here is Promised Land Brewing's post asking for customer feedback. Just as they did, make sure to include the review sites you use on your posts.
Another successful way you can ask for reviews is when you...
4. Offer Rewards
Nope, it's not the same as buying reviews.
You see, you are not paying a customer for positive reviews... which is totally unethical. Instead, it would be their own will to leave you some. You're just motivating them to leave their unsolicited praise. ?
And they will because everybody loves a great deal.
When asking for reviews, offer more customers discounts, coupon codes, and/or limited-time offers.
And when they leave more reviews, you can also increase the reward they gain. It will motivate them to be more engaging with your brand.
Another local business that's killing it is Baxter's PET DEPOT. They encourage their customers to leave a Google review in exchange for $5 off on their next service. Plus, look at that adorable pooch!
Speaking of more Google reviews...
5. Utilize Google Reviews
It's safe to say that Google is a trustworthy source of... well, everything. 65% of customers think so, too. They go to Google to read reviews before they make a decision.
In a nutshell, it's THE review platform where you need to be.
And when other customers find your business listing on Google... they'll be more than enthusiastic to drop in their own opinions.
So first off, you have to make a Google Business Review link. You can share the link with your customers so they can leave a review. Add it to your social media posts, email campaigns, receipts, and surveys.
Want more Google reviews? Use the "Review Us On Google" sticker. Google includes it in the free tools they give to businesses that sign up for their program.
Once a customer purchases from your website, go ahead and...
6. Include A Card In Your Packaging
Do you know that giddy feeling you get when you open a gift? It's what your customers feel when they unbox a product they purchase.
So, add to that joyous feeling!
You can add a thank you card to your packaging. Use tools such as Canva to design your card. Make sure it matches the tone and style of your brand.
And don't forget to ask for reviews on your thank you card. Include a review link or QR code for your happy customers to have easier access.
Another route you can take is by using stickers. Small businesses utilize this very well. This design studio's sticker is direct to the point.
Lastly, focus on your company website to level up your customer experience. So...
7. Include Call To Action On Your Website
Of course, you can sprinkle CTAs on different pages of your site, especially your product pages. But to maximize your website, create a dedicated reviews page for your business.
Make sure it's accessible through your main navigation. It should be one of the first things prospective customers will see.
It's always fun to visit Yappy's website. The reviews are easily seen on their navigation. And look at all those organized reviews! It makes me want to add more to their collection.
And that's how you successfully ask for reviews! Now wasn't that easy?
Well, your job is not done yet as you have to...
Say Thank You For All Your Customer's Appreciation!
Your customers did you a favor by leaving a review.
Remember to thank them by responding to their reviews. Yes, even the negative ones! Maybe you can even change their mind by replying.
Once you have satisfactorily generated customer reviews, it's time to share them with the world.
Spread the word! Post it on your social media channels. Incorporate it into your email campaign. Include it on your landing pages. After all, it's effective social proof!
What's next? Step up your social proof with Debutify Reviews!