In today’s eCommerce, having online reviews is a king feature to increase social proof and conversions. Studies show that buying decision of 90% of customers is directly influenced by online product reviews. Indeed, conversion rates improve by more than 50% when stores visitors interact with online reviews. Hence, your Shopify stores can’t afford to not care about customer reviews.
That said, we’re going to discuss a number of simple yet effective ways to encourage your customers to write more store/product reviews.
Run a review campaign on autopilot
If you have a few customers, you may be able to individually reach out to each customer and ask them to write a review and add the collected reviews in the right location of your website. But, what if you have a lot of customers? In that case, things get more complicated and you may lose control over your campaign. For example, you may forget to follow up with one customer, reply to their negative reviews, or publish their reviews.
To avoid chaos in your online review campaign, you should launch a process that works on autopilot. Once you set up your desired settings, a machine (e.g., an app or software) should get the job done on autopilot. And then, you can efficiently scale review collection and eventually get more reviews.
Give away a reward
Not all customers are naturally willing to spend time and write a review, even though they were satisfied by your service. However, when they see their time is appreciated, they’re more inclined to write reviews for your products. Rewarding customers becomes more vital when you’re looking for collecting photo reviews, which is more impactful than text-only reviews. Preparing photos indeed requires more time yet incentivizing customers is a convincing way to ask for a photo review. The reward can be in various forms such as discount codes for the next purchase, free shipping, or gift cards.
Customize emails to match your brand
Review requests emails are typically sent out via third-party tools. But, how should your customers trust that email is coming from you at the first glance? Sending a custom email that matches your brand identity is the key. You should add your logo, write your type of copy, and use fonts and colors that clearly signal to your customers “it’s actually you”.
Don’t forget to send a reminder email
People are busy, or sometimes they’re lazy. Plus they might be bombarded by a lot of emails at the time they receive your email. Now, assume your first review request email delivers to your customer’s inbox at a bad time despite the willingness of your customer to share their experience. Thus, you need to double-check on customers by sending a reminder email, in case your first email got buried. Note that sending the reminder email after 7 days can boost the review collection rate by 30%.
Request for reviews at the right time
Don’t ask for product reviews too later or too soon! Just imagine you ask a customer to write a review while they haven’t got the product yet. It not only ends up with no reviews but also makes a bad impression on your customers that why you expect them to submit a review too early. Research has shown that asking for reviews even right after item’s delivery is not appropriate and is pushed back by customers. A shopper requires some days to actually try the product before sharing their real experience by writing a product review.
On the other hand, asking too late may lead to that they are no longer as excited as when they tried the product first. They might even forget about their purchase and so ignore the relevant emails. Therefore, it is important to send the review request email at a right time. While 14 days after purchase time is a norm, you should come up with the right sending time according to your type of products, customers, geographic location, shipping services, etc.
Managing reviews is a post-action for collecting more reviews in the future. For example, you should proactively reply to negative reviews or those that are asking questions. A well-written reply is a good signal for future prospects that you care about your customers’ issues and you do your best to resolve them. At the end of the day, you can’t please everyone, and receiving negative reviews is expected during the review collection campaign. In addition, a negative review might highlight a true issue that your business wasn’t successful in some areas, and addressing such issues is actually helping you to attract more customers.
Even though we don’t encourage you to hide a review just because it’s not a high-rating one, some reviews contain inappropriate language and photos, or simply they’re scams. In such situations, you should actively delete or hide such reviews to make your list clean.
Allow other ways to write a review
While sending emails to customers after their purchase is the most common approach to collect photo reviews, you should try to get reviews from other ways as well. One way is to allow customers to write a review right from the product pages by providing a “write a review” button on the review widgets. Push notifications, Facebook messengers, and SMS are the other common ways that you can ask for reviews.
Make it simple for people to review you
A simple UI for the review submission form simply boosts your review collection rate. A complex, multi-step process causes customers to ditch submitting a review. Ask the minimum information that is required to showcase a review. Typically, the required information for displaying a review is the author’s name, rating, review’s text, and photo (optional). In this article, we discussed how a simple review form should look like.
We described a number of simple tips that help you to collect more store or product reviews for your Shopify stores. Mainly, you should focus on running things on autopilot, offer rewards, customize emails and send them at the right time, and finally manage reviews and make the process of submitting a review as simple as possible.
Typically, you can achieve all these strategies by using a reliable product reviews app. Our Product Reviews and Referrals app is one of the best FREE reviews app for Shopify that helps you to achieve all the mentioned strategies in just a few clicks. I provided a list of the best free product reviews app for Shopify stores that you can start with.
If you have any questions about how to run a successful photo review campaign or how to leverage Scuti platform for doing so, please let me know.