How many times have you tried something just because your friend or a close family member has recommended it to you?
If you answered 'many times!' you're not alone.
'You have to Try this' is the statement that sparks interest in anyone and persuades customers to give that thing a try before it's too late.
Whether it's a Netflix season, an educational institute, or a product, we're likely to go with the options that come as recommendations from others.
Testimonials are powerful. And that's perhaps the biggest reason why companies like Disney and Nike invest in social proof marketing in 2021 to capture the attention of their target audiences and increase conversions.
According to research, the average customer goes through at least 11 reviews before they buy anything online.
So how can you leverage this powerful ecommerce tactic to boost online conversions?
Continue reading if you have questions about social proof marketing in 2021. This post has everything you need to know about using testimonials in your content and other marketing materials.
What Are Customer Testimonials?
By definition, customer testimonials are personal recommendations from past customers that demonstrate how a particular product or a service from a brand has helped them achieve their goals.
Customer testimonials are usually short (a few sentence-based) quotes highlighting the problems the buyers have faced and the solutions they received from a brand.
The more testimonials you receive, the better you can build your reputation online.
The Importance Of Trust In Marketing
As they say, trust cannot be bought; it must be earned. Considering that the online marketplace is already saturated with millions of sellers, building relationships is the only way ecommerce vendors can gain the attention of their buyers.
Here, it is essential to understand that establishing relationships in the digital world is far beyond boosting online store conversions.
Although modern customers are savvy, the online marketplace is still crowded with low-quality products and scam artists using fake review strategies to peddle their wares.
Genuine customer testimonials and social service signals are incredibly beneficial for your business. They prove that your brand has a loyal customer base willing to say and share great things about you.
Here are a few reasons why having a robust customer testimonial strategy is critical for the success and growth of your online business.
They Build Trust
Let's suppose you want to buy a pair of sports shoes for an upcoming sports gala in your college. Since you're away from your home and visiting any physical shop is not an option at the moment, you decided to perform a quick Google search to find the best option online.
There are two websites you think have great sports shoe variety. The prices on the first website are slightly higher than the other one. But that website has a loaded list of reviews listed on it.
The other website offers more or less the same variety. However, the prices on this website are lower than that of the first website. The only downside is the site doesn't include any reviews. They even have turned the review feature on their Facebook page as well. Who do you trust?
You got your answer, right?
They Boost Conversions
Did you know buyers who interact via reviews are 58% more likely to convert? That means the more positive reviews you get, the more likely those customers will convert and contribute to your ROI.
They Act As Social Proof
Have you ever purchased a product because your best friend swears by it?
A statement as simple as 'if it works for them, it will work for me' will give you confidence that you're investing in the right product and that your hard-earned money won't go to waste.
When used correctly, customer testimonials can be a profitable sales strategy. According to 95% of customers, reviews, whether positive or negative, impact their buying decision.
They Serve As UGC (User Generated Content)
Creating unique and creative content is an ongoing struggle. The biggest advantage of publishing customer testimonials is that they act as user-generated content - which is more reliable and valuable than any other form of content.
Customer Testimonials Statistics You Need To Know Customer Testimonials Statistics You Need To Know
- More than 56% of customers find reviews useful
- Dimension Research reveals that up to 90% of buyers admitted that customer success stories in content influenced their buying decisions
- Over 89% of digital marketers believe that positive customer testimonials and case studies significantly impact the buyer's purchasing decision
- 88% of customers trust testimonials as much as personal recommendations from a close family member or a friend
- Over 37% of people think testimonial videos are more impactful than the brand's own pitch
Types Of Customer Testimonials
Now that you know what customer testimonials are, how they work, and why it is unavoidable for any online business to have them, it is time to highlight the common customer testimonial types you can use to boost online store conversions.
Social Media Testimonials
Social media has literally changed the way we live our lives. Whether it is about our achievements, failures, or frustrations with our favorite brands, we like to take them all to social media.
That’s perhaps the biggest reason why every successful brand has invested in a robust social media marketing strategy these days.
There are more than 4.33 billion social media users worldwide. That means the social media testimonials you get will influence a lot of people when they come and visit your profile.
They're also effective because they allow you to cross-check whether the person sharing his/her feedback is the genuine buyer.
Simply put, buyer reviews are all those short texts you receive on your social media profiles and website against your services. Brands usually ask for them immediately after a customer has purchased from a website. Collecting customer reviews is a no-brainer too. You can automate the entire process and gather reviews through autopilot.
Influencer testimonials are another type of customer testimonials that come from those high-profile celebrities and well-known people who already have established a reputation in your area of expertise.
Case studies also act as a creative form of testimonial that enables businesses to demonstrate how their previous customers or clients have progressed over time with the help of your products or services.
Blog Post Reviews
Blog post reviews are written by affiliates that highlight all the pros and cons of your product or services.
The internet is quickly becoming a visual space. You can also leverage video marketing to showcase your previous buyer's transformations.
Also, you can request your customers to drop video testimonials demonstrating how your product has solved their problems. You can display those videos on your homepage or relevant product pages to attract sales.
Seven Strategies For Using Customer Testimonials In Your Content
1. Add Customer Testimonials Within Your Blog Posts
Have you ever wondered what makes visitors from other sources come to your site and read your content? The answer to this question is simple - they find your content compelling.
So, adding customer testimonials within your blog posts can be the best social proof marketing strategy in 2021.
You can take screenshots of your client's reviews and embed them within content in the form of images. Moreover, you can also quote those testimonials and place them strategically side by side with relevant text.
With this customer testimonials tactic, you can turn your blog posts into lead magnets that grab customer's attention and encourage them to take your desired action.
2. Use Customer Testimonials In Case Studies
While customer testimonials are an awesome sales tool in their own right, they won't necessarily help customers make a buying decision. What actually makes them click and convert is results.
That's where case studies step in.
Case studies are a powerful weapon that demonstrates how your brand has helped clients achieve their goals in the stated period.
Take the example of weight loss products here. They showcase customer testimonials through case studies by highlighting the problem, its solution, and the total time invested.
Embedding customer testimonials into case studies adds weight and evidence to the claims made.
3. Send Story-Telling Emails
Since your email subscribers have willfully joined your email list, they have a certain interest in your offers.
That lends a great opportunity for your brand to convert those curious subscribers into paying clients. And customer testimonials and praises by your previous clients can help you achieve your conversion goals faster.
You can use your emails to tell success stories of your previous clients so that your current subscribers can feel confident.
Your subscribers may not trust your words, but they will surely believe your customers.
4. Use Testimonials In Print Marketing Materials
We know print marketing materials aren't trending these days because of digital substitutes. And that makes sense. Software and computer programs have made it incredibly easy for vendors to market and measure their campaigns.
But that doesn't mean that print marketing is dead altogether. A Forbes study reveals that print marketing materials better convert as they're more "real" to the "brain".
Many big brands still benefit from print marketing materials. So you can also do the same by adding testimonials to all of your print marketing materials that you're sending out to your potential and existing customers.
5. Include Testimonials In Your Social Media Posts
Social media marketing has come a long way in recent years. Almost every business, big or small, has a well-structured social media strategy in place to attract sales and boost online store conversions.
Did you know you can also place testimonials within your social media posts to build trust and credibility?
This strategy can drive remarkable results when implemented correctly.
6. Benefit From Quora
Quora is a powerful Q/A platform that millions of users use every day to find answers to their questions.
It also provides an opportunity for ecommerce business owners to prove their expertise and industry knowledge by allowing them to answer relevant questions asked by the users.
All you need to do is start searching queries relevant to your business on Quora and include customer testimonials as answers.
You can even ask your current customers to answer using their profiles so that the feedback looks more authentic.
7. Use Them In Visuals
Visual content converts fast. Why not include user testimonials in videos and infographics to drive conversions?
While you can post testimonials in static images form, it is better if you turn them into infographics describing the success stories of your buyers.
How to Ask for the Testimonials?
The best way to get testimonials is to ask for them. But obviously, you can't knock on each customer's door and ask for feedback.
Instead of randomly asking customers to drop reviews, it is better to have a well-placed testimonial strategy in place.
Here are a few ways you can collect testimonials from your customers.:
- Follow up immediately after a customer has purchased from your store
- Follow up again with those customers who haven't replied to your first request
- Approach them directly
No matter what strategy you choose to gather customer testimonials, make sure you ask the right questions.