The holidays are not just about thanking your friends and family for their continued support. They are also an ideal time to reach out to your customers and thank them for being a part of your journey. You could also take a moment to ask for some appreciation in return – in the form of reviews and testimonials.
According to research, positive customer reviews increase conversion rates by almost 4.6 percent and increase sales by 18 percent. This is because instead of trusting paid advertisements, potential customers trust the experiences of other users before making a purchase. This simply indicates that reviews mean a lot to customers. And it’s not just the positive reviews that appeal to customers. Most customers who read reviews tend to compare positive and negative ones. Your customers are more likely to trust online reviews if they see a healthy mix of positive and negative reviews about your products or brand.
In addition to increasing leads and sales, putting customer reviews on your online store has one more benefit – SEO. When your competitors are using the same generic product descriptions, having user-generated content that is fresh and updated can make your website stand out and make it more attractive to search engines. And the best part is that even negative reviews can push your website to the top of search results.
During the holidays, when shoppers are frantically looking for great deals and the latest products, customer reviews also increase by 50 percent. This is because gift-givers increasingly turn to ratings and reviews before making a purchase. So with the holiday season upon us, here are a few tips to increase online reviews during the holidays and beyond:
1. Display feedback forms on your website: To begin with, provide at least one dedicated feedback email id where customers can communicate their concerns. A dedicated email continues to be the most effective method of gathering customer feedback. According to a survey, more than 55 percent of online customers prefer emails for interacting with customer service executives. You can also place a dedicated feedback form prominently on your website.
2. Call your high-potential customers: Calling customers regularly is a proactive way to seek their feedback. This method generates the best responses. The advantage of this method is that you get a candid feedback directly from the customers. You can easily sense their satisfaction or concerns from the tone of their voice.
3. Send emails to new customers: One of the best things about email surveys is that you can ask many questions about a customer’s entire shopping experience. This method is a must for new shoppers. For this method to be effective, you should send out the survey within two to three days of order confirmation. However, you have to be careful not to annoy customers by sending this survey after every purchase.
4. Monitor social media: Social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. are an invaluable resource for generating customer feedback. The Internet is loaded with tools that help monitor conversations about a brand on social media. Tracking social media can provide a great opportunity for you to improve your customers’ experience and control issues before they catch fire.
5. Request feedback on the order confirmation page: The order confirmation page is ideal for seeking feedback about a customer’s shopping experience. Questions should be brief and multiple-choice. You could consider placing a general text box for customers’ comments.
6. Seek feedback when a customer abandons the cart: Based on a recent study, the abandonment rate on most e-commerce sites is approximately 68 percent. Seeking customer feedback at this stage can help improve conversions.
7. Display positive reviews on your website: Displaying positive customer reviews on your website has a lot of advantages. It not only encourages customers who have shared feedback, but it also encourages other customers to leave reviews. However, the reviews should appear with the customer’s full name and organization, if available. Don’t ever buy fake reviews, because customers are intelligent enough to differentiate between real and fake ones.