How to Get Customers to Leave a Review
The thrill of watching your online sales rack up just scratches the surface in building a booming ecommerce business. Securing a steady flow of online reviews helps establish social proof & trust with potential customers. Research also shows that 93% of customers read online reviews before ever buying a product. The more reviews you earn, the better your odds of attracting more customers.
Despite how essential online reviews are for your business, just 81% of customers say they leave a review about four times per year or less. The good news is there are ways to earn prompt reviews from both new & loyal customers. Try some of these strategies to get started.
Set-Up Multiple Online Profiles
Not all customers use the same online platforms to leave reviews, making it important to set-up numerous online profiles across different platforms. Your own ecommerce website is one place to start, but you can also ask for reviews directly on your social media channels.
Make sure to ask customers to leave reviews anywhere you sell products. You can increase your sales & raise brand awareness by selling across multiple platforms, from Amazon to eBay & Etsy. But, if you also run a brick-and-mortar store that compliments your website, you can also ask people to leave reviews on Google & Yelp.
Once you’ve gathered online reviews, consider collecting them to post directly on your store’s website. You could also repurpose reviews in an email marketing campaign to entice new, old, & potential customers to make their next purchase.
Respond to All Reviews
It’s important to take the time to respond to customer reviews, whether positive or not. Listen to what customers are saying & reflect back on their feelings about their experience. It’s also essential to thank them for their thoughts. As a business owner, poor reviews are never fun to read, but are invaluable to engaging with customers & improving your business.
Reframe bad reviews as a goldmine for your business. If you discover a specific product lacks quality or creativity, you now have the opportunity to fix it. You can use CustomCat’s print-on-demand (POD) services to customize high-quality products & experiment with new styles. With no minimum orders, you can roll out new products until you find the winners & help grow your sales.
Ask for Reviews In Your Ongoing Communication
Asking customers directly for a product review is effective, but you can also add it to ongoing communication more subtly. At the end of your email marketing messages, add the line, “Please support us by leaving an honest, online review!” & link to your review channel of choice. Try adding the same messaging at the end of any video tutorials, gift guides, or social media channels.
Shoppers probably don’t keep online reviews at the top of their minds & just want to enjoy their new find. You’ll probably need to prompt customers several times to leave a review for your products. Avoid spamming your audience, but sending reminders to leave a review helps improve your chances.
Staying proactive also means brainstorming new ways to prompt a review. Link to your preferred platform of choice for customers to quickly & easily leave a review. Offering a perk, like a coupon code for a limited time, also incentivizes customers to take action & leave a review.
Leverage Ecommerce Apps & Plugins
Whether you use Shopify or WordPress for your online store, there are apps & plugins to collect customer reviews. They save time & help automate the process. It’s also savvy to add some of the feedback & comments on your store’s current product descriptions. Choose apps that are customizable & easy to share on your social media channels.
Check-In About Past Purchases
Use the opportunity to ask for online reviews with a check-in about previous purchases. Ask customers if they’re enjoying the product & if they have any feedback. Once you hear back from the customer, engage in a dialogue about the products & consider how you could make the experience even better. Or use the opportunity to ask them to leave an online review.
Sometimes customers don’t know where to start or what to say when leaving an online review. However, the more specific they are, the more likely other customers are to take action & make an informed purchase. Let customers know it’s always helpful if they would answer a few questions in their review to help other shoppers. Here are a few ideas to try:
What was your first impression of the product?
What did you like about the product or shopping experience?
Would you recommend this to a friend or family member?
As more customers leave reviews, you’ll see commonalities & references to things like color, size, & creativity. Use the information to help shape your questions or craft more compelling product reviews.
Use SMS Text Message Marketing
More companies use SMS text message marketing to send shipping updates, sales information, & upcoming promos. Just like email marketing, you’ll still need customers to opt into your SMS list to permit you to send updates. Once they’ve opted in, ask past customers for online reviews & leave a link. They can click right from their smartphone & land on a page to leave reviews.
Invite Customers to a Focus Group
Instead of waiting for customers to leave a brief review, consider organizing a focus group instead. Independent organizations can run these, or you can run them yourself in a more informal setting. Use Zoom or Google Hangouts & invite a handful of customers to talk about their experience.
Your focus group helps give you more ideas & context to how customers view your ecommerce store. The feedback on what customers like & don’t like about your products are a valuable way to strategize new products & business decisions.
Say Thank You
No matter how customers leave their online reviews or offer feedback, extend a sincere thank you. The gesture lets customers know you appreciate their time & take their input seriously. Design a thank you email or create a video expressing your gratitude.
How do you get customers to leave reviews for your online store? Let us know by leaving a comment below!