Customer reviews are the backbone of any online business - after all, people have always been more inclined to buy a product if someone else takes the time to stop and rave about it. Especially in the absence of a brick and mortar shop (filled with knowledgeable employees), online reviews act as the best way for many customers to gauge their own interest or compatibility with what you’re offering online. It only works to your advantage to encourage as many customer reviews as possible, and below we’ve outlined five easy ways you can do that right now:

1. Follow Up With Your Customers To Get More Product Reviews

It’s not enough to simply deliver a product and expect most customers to leap back onto your site to review it - you have to get them back in the right mindset to share their experience. If they’re happy with the product, they might want to share their satisfaction - but they might not be motivated to actually sit down and write about it unless you remind them. Sending a follow-up email to customers who’ve purchased from you is a quick way to get them in a review mindset. By checking in with your customer, they’ll already feel like their opinion matters, and if you provide a quick and easy link at the bottom of that email to write a review, they’ll be all the more motivated to share their experience. Etsy, for instance, reports that one in four customers they follow-up with actually follows through and writes a review. It’s pretty much the definition of low risk/high reward.

2. Have Them Rate Through A Survey

One way to really prompt feedback is to make feedback fun. Structuring the review process in a way that feels like an escape from routine won’t just make reviews more fun for your customers, it might just put them in a more positive mood too, which means you’ll have an easier time getting positive feedback. It’s a win/win. Whether it’s in the follow-up email, directly on your site, or posted on your social media, formatting a review prompt as a survey can really increase your response rate. Another big benefit of rating through surveys is the ability to guide your customers to the specific responses most helpful to your business. It’s always advisable to leave space for comments when rating through this method, since fully-formed original statements are a lot more attractive to read than star ratings and percentages, but by leading your customers with pre-set options, you can make writing a review a lot more attractive, right from the start.

3. Be Honest To Get More Product Reviews

It might sound too simple to work, but being transparent about why you want your customers to give reviews is one of the best ways to actually get customer reviews. Reviews are helpful to your business, so why not prompt your customers by asking for assistance? Believe it or not, being helpful is all the motivation a lot of your customers might need to write a review for your site. By phrasing your prompt in honest, casual terms (“If you love it, help us out and spread the word”, etc.) you’ll be more likely to get honest, casual reviews from real people. And those are the kinds of reviews that other real people tend to trust. Sometimes, honesty really is the best policy.

4. Reply to Both Positive and Negative Reviews

Nothing builds trust between you and your customers quicker than responding to negative reviews. It shows you care about fixing concerns, and ultimately stand behind the integrity of your products - even if that reviewer’s initial experience isn’t as you’ve hoped. In many cases, you can turn the situation around and make a loyal fan for life. Responding to positive reviews also reinforces a connection with your customers, shows gratitude, and can even inspire more positive reviews in the future. You don’t have to respond to each and every review, but taking the time to regularly browse and respond to as many as you can is an easy way to strengthen your brand and build a bigger fanbase.

5. Actually Reward Your Reviewers To Get More Product Reviews

“Thanks” is great, but rewards are a whole lot greater. There are a variety of ways to encourage reviews from your customers that not only benefit them, but encourage loyalty in the long run. Some sites even institute a point-based reward system that adds up to savings or free add-ons for every review customers share. Chances are, many customers will wind up buying more products, just so they can review more and get rewarded. Making feedback a game makes that feedback actually engaging for the customer, especially if that game comes with very real pay-offs. The only problem with trading discounts for reviews is you might wind up giving out a whole lot of discounts, and getting very few quality reviews in return. In fact, in some cases, you might wind up with no reviews at all. On top of that, if you give away too much in rewards, you may risk violating FTC regulations. That could put your whole company in a very unfortunate situation. When you partner with Revioly, you’ll already be aligned with the FTC’s best practices. Their reviews are also already trusted by a wide audience of consumers looking to update their home with a diverse range of products. Check out what they can do for you and get the fastest jump-start possible on growing your customer reviews.

Reviewing The Reviews

When it comes to getting more customer reviews, the best practices are also the most straightforward. Respect your customers by making the whole review process a fun one, engage with their feedback when appropriate, and encourage more reviews by properly rewarding them. Revioly is also a great option to make all of this easier than ever, and can get you the high-quality reviews you’re looking for without breaking a sweat (or breaking the bank).
Revioly - Get authentic online product reviews

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