6 Ways to Get More Reviews
Encouraging customers to leave reviews is crucial to building your reputation. Here's our top tips.
February 6th, 2020
You know you need to generate reviews, but how? The first step to getting a great online reputation is to have a reputation at all. Then, it’s time to start getting clever with your review gathering.
1) HAVE A PRESENCE ON AS MANY REVIEW SITES AS POSSIBLE
We know, this advice might seem a bit daunting. It sounds like it could create a lot of work for a team you’d rather keep as sleek as possible, right? Not necessarily. And any extra work is worth it; customers can be fickle, and they’ll be much less likely to leave you a review if you’re not on the platform they happen to have a preference for.
This has a secondary benefit too – a wider presence means potential customers are more likely to find you when doing their research.
In fact, Womply found that businesses that claim free listings on at least 4 different sites earn 58% more revenue. That alone is incredible incentive.
Luckily, there are a few tools out there that will help you to manage your reviews across multiple sites from one place.
You need to be sure the software you choose is able to integrate with the review platforms you’ll be using. We recommend Gnatta to our clients as it gives us the ability to reply to reviews from multiple sites in the same system we use for all customer service queries.
How do you check if the software you’re thinking of using can work with the review sites your customers prefer? Usually they’ll have a page that shows which platforms they have established relationships with, or you can reach out to them directly.
Once you’re set up and ready on go across review sites, it’s time to get started on our next tip.
2) ASK FOR REVIEWS
This is potentially obvious advice, we’ll admit. But getting more reviews can be as simple as asking for them - 76% of customers that are asked to will leave a review.
How do you ask for reviews most effectively? There is no one-size-fits-all answer to that question. Best practice would be to allow your customer long enough to have a chance to use – and therefore form an opinion of – their purchase.
You’ll know best how long that is for the goods you sell, but the standard in retail is to give a customer at least a week before requesting a review.
If you’ve already had a conversation with a customer prior to them making a purchase, ask for a review in the same communication channel. For example, if they contacted your customer service (CS) team via Facebook Messenger to find out if a product was in stock and subsequently placed an order, reach out to them a week later on Messenger. It will feel more like a natural continuation of your conversation rather than an out-of-the-blue request.
This strategy has the benefit of feeling more personalised (more on that shortly) – you’ve reached out to them on a channel you know they prefer – and can be easily automated. Use a communication platform that can automatically send messages after a set time period passes and integrate it with your order management software. This would be able to send review requests on an automated basis to the channel a customer used most recently to contact you. If you’d like some guidance on how to set that up, please just reach out to us.
3) TELL CUSTOMERS WHAT A REVIEW MEANS TO YOU
At face-value this might seem most useful to smaller retailers. If they’re small and want to grow, reviews must be more important to them, right? Not necessarily.
All businesses need customers, which means all businesses need to hear their opinions. Thus, a need for reviews. The key is telling your customers why you need their feedback, and what you’re going to do with it. If you have evidence of changes you’ve made based on previous reviews you can include, that’s even better.
Make it clear when asking for reviews that you’re going to take action based on all feedback – both positive and negative. That you know their unique perspective means they can see needs for improvement that you maybe can’t, and in your dedication to providing great products/services you’d like to hear their thoughts. Even if they only have a ‘keep up the great work’ to share, at least then you’ll know you’re already on the right path.
This strategy only works if you sincerely intend to take action based on your customers’ comments. If you receive a review with actionable feedback, inform the customer that you’re going to take action based on it. If customers don't see any changes over the course of time they’ll know your requests for feedback weren’t sincere, and that will negatively affect your reputation.
If you’re a smaller business, reviews are also a great way to build a reputation by letting customers know that a) you’re there and b) your products are of a reliable quality. Send review requests that thank customers for choosing you (smaller businesses can sometimes be seen as a risk) and ask them to be part of your growth by sharing their experience with other potential customers.
4) GET PERSONAL
This is a common tip when interacting at all with customers, and for good reason. Customers want to feel like you’ve been paying attention to them – 72% will only engage with personalized marketing messages.
This can be a bit trickier for an online retailer than a local business, but certainly isn’t impossible.
You can personalise your requests for reviews by showing familiarity with their activity with your business - reference any previous orders they’ve made with you, potentially how frequently they usually make an order. Show you know, and value, their relationship with your brand.
Showing customers that they’re more than just an order number helps them to think of you as more than just another business. By establishing that relationship with them, a customer may feel more obliged to leave you a review.
5) HELP THEM GET MORE OUT OF THEIR PURCHASE
Create more goodwill with your customers by providing tips on how they can use the products they’ve purchased to their fullest potential.
Do you offer a niche product that they might need a bit more guidance to use? Or are there more ‘outside-the-box’ uses for it that maybe they don’t know about? By providing a guide on all the ways they could use your product, you’ll be helping them to get the best value for their money.
To maximise the potential for a customer to leave a review, provide these tips in the same message. But beware the cynical customer – ensure your message doesn’t appear to offer this advice in exchange for a review or they may form a negative opinion. An offer of advice in a message that also happens to have a request for a review in it is what you’re going for.
By giving the customer a reason to be grateful to you, you create an extra incentive to do something of value to you in return.
6) INCENTIVISE YOUR CUSTOMER SERVICE TEAM
A few of the tips above are automatable, but if you’re sending out manual request for reviews they only work if your CS team are on board.
This is a strategy we’ve had great success with over the years. Create a bit of friendly competition on your team by providing a prize to the advisor who gets the most reviews in a week. Provide a team-wide treat every time you hit a review milestone (like your 100th review, or an increase in star-rating).
You’ll be encouraging great customer service and earning more reviews at the same time. Win-win.
We hope this guide has assured you that getting more reviews doesn’t have to be a daunting task.
How do you encourage customers to leave reviews? Make sure you have a presence across review sites, ask customers for their thoughts, and make that request easy for a customer to oblige to. Create a stronger relationship with customers by personalising your requests and show an investment in improving your service.
The most important thing is to have a genuine interest in creating a great customer experience and using reviews as part of your strategy to do that. Ultimately, following these tips won’t work if your customers are generally underwhelmed by their experience with your brand.
If you’d like to hear more on how to implement any of these points, or if you’d like to hear more on how we’ve helped clients increase their review scores from 1-star to 5-star, please contact us today. This is an area we have years of expertise in, and we’d love to help.