Does the thought of including product reviews on your site cause you to break into a cold sweat because there’s always that one negative customer that’s just unhappy with life? Don’t let it bother you.
Think about the last time someone you trust told you about a product or service and how much more likely you were to seek it out after that. The same happens to consumers as a whole. We’re programmed to seek out the advice of others and are wary of those who are the only ones touting their goods.
Social Proof and the Tipping Point
In sociology, a tipping point is known as the point in time when a group dramatically changes its behaviour by widely adopting a previously occasional practice. Think of Facebook when it was a social network that only included Harvard. There was then a time when it spread like wildfire. Now, it is just a social norm — and a verb.
Social proof helps us with our go-with-the-masses mentality — “If others like it, I feel it’s more of a probability I’ll like it too.” It also ups your trustworthiness game because your customers are seeing strangers saying your product is awesome. That tends to go even further when paired with your great descriptions. Because your buyers can’t see you in person, ratings on your product pages help them trust your brand without ever having met you.
Even Bad Reviews Can Be Good
Don’t be shy about asking for reviews. You believe in your product or service, so you know others will, too. Obviously, the more positive reviews you get, the better — BUT a few bad reviews could actually work in your favour. Showing that a few people weren’t happy can show your customer that the reviews they’re reading are legitimate, increasing your trustworthiness.
Successful eCommerce businesses are those who build a trustworthy brand. Trustworthy brands build enough value to grow.
If and when you get a bad review and it seems like a valid complaint, see if there’s something systemic going on or if it was just a one-off. Do your best to make it right and that unhappy customer may just turn into your biggest advocate. Just keep in mind, some people love to complain online. Consider the gratuitous complaints just the cost of doing business and move on.
When someone really loves your product, they will sometimes even mention those negative reviews and tell other buyers to ignore them, which adds to the weight of the positive review.
Be Smart About Asking for Reviews
Oftentimes, a company will send out an email verifying a product has been shipped. And, within that email, they’ll ask for a review. What’s the likelihood anyone will get and use the product, then remember to go back to leave a positive review a few weeks later? Not likely. But you want a lot of reviews — the more, the better. So you have to get the timing right.
People who are happy with their purchase are far less likely to go back and leave a review because everything is fine, and they don’t need any attention. Don’t be shy about reaching out and asking for each buyer’s opinion, but you have to get the timing right.
Send an email about two weeks after shipping. This gives people enough time to use the product but not so long that they’ve forgotten about the newness of it. A gentle push is likely all it will take to collect their opinion.
Tip! Give your reviews validity by adding a “verified reviewer” or “verified purchase” line to each review.
Actionable Items to Improve Your eCommerce Business’s Success
- Add to your email campaign a request for a review two weeks after shipping.
- Review reviews before posting to eliminate offensive or nonsense reviews.
- Include a “verified purchase” or “verified reviewer” line for each review.
Avoid These Common Pitfalls
- Not posting negative reviews
- Not including a rating system (stars, numbers, etc.)
At A360 Coaching, we welcome reviews and testimonials. We are determined to help eCommerce businesses become more effective, profitable and successful. Our only questions is, will YOUR eCommerce business be our next success story?