7 Ways to Use Product Reviews to Influence Shoppers
Some merchants still fail to see the importance of product reviews. Instead, they often focus all their energy on updating the site's design or finding the best email marketing techniques. But all of these site updates and email techniques won't matter if you're not getting good reviews on your site.
Many people are influenced by the opinions of others and don’t make purchasing decisions without reading a couple of product reviews first.
Whether you're a famous brand or someone that's just starting out, customer reviews can help you achieve better results, faster.
In today's blog post, we discuss the benefits of using product reviews and give you the top ways you can use them to influence shoppers in order to reap these benefits. We answer all the essential questions you may have, including:
- What are the benefits of using product reviews to influence shoppers?
- How to use product reviews to influence shoppers?
- Do negative reviews have a bad influence on shoppers?
Without further ado, let's get into it!
What Are the Benefits of Using Product Reviews to Influence Shoppers?
Before we get to the “how,” let's break down some of the most important benefits of using product reviews across your on- and off-site marketing to influence potential customers.
Integrating product reviews into your marketing helps online retailers:
- Build trust
- Boost conversions
- Increase UGC
Let’s look at each.
1. Build Trust
Most customers read the reviews before they decide to purchase from an online retail brand. By showcasing product reviews, you will be able to make your store seem more authentic and earn the trust of new customers.
Why? People tend to have faith in the opinions of other customers, trusting product reviews as much as personal suggestions from friends.
2. Boost Conversions
As mentioned above, product reviews can motivate shoppers to take the final step at the checkout page, thus leading you to better conversions and higher revenue. Medill Spiegel Research Center (SRC) found that a product with at least a couple of reviews has a 270% higher chance of selling than a product without any reviews.
3. Increase UGC
Showcasing your reviews on your website can also help you get more feedback and UGC (user-generated content) from customers. All you need to do is add a "Leave a Review" button and make it visible to all your customers. Then, just sit back and wait for reviews to come in.
Or you can try one of these product review apps that will automatically send review requests to customers and/or offer incentives for doing so.
How to Use Product Reviews to Influence Shoppers?
Now that we have reviewed the importance, let’s find out how you influence your shoppers by using product reviews. There are eight key tips you can use to do just that. You will want to:
- Make reviews stand out
- Add photo reviews
- Showcase honest feedback
- Allow visitors to sort reviews
- Respond to reviews
- Share reviews on social media
- Add reviews to abandoned cart emails
- Add customer reviews to ads
Let’s take a closer look at each.
1. Make Reviews Stand Out
On average, 9 out of 10 shoppers prefer to read reviews on the product page before making the final purchasing decision.
Here are a few tips on how you can make your reviews stand out:
- Create widgets that have a clean design
- Try to match the appearance of your theme
- Position the review section right beneath the product description
- Make sure the text is appropriately sized and easy to read
- Don’t forget to add a nice star rating
Here is a good example of Alora doing just that.
2. Add Photo Reviews
Customer photos can make your reviews seem more authentic and help convince buyers to make the final purchase decision. A recent report found that UGC photos are 5X more likely to convert than basic non-UGC images. This is an opportunity you shouldn't miss out on.
Some top brands already ensure they use photos in all product reviews, including Nike, Starbucks, GoPro, Lauren James, and many more. In order to do the same — collect and showcase a product review with photos — you will need to install a third-party product review app, such as Shopify’s Product Reviews.
3. Showcase Honest Feedback
Remember, even though getting reviews from authentic customers takes time, paying for reviews won't get you anywhere. This can only backfire and negatively affect your brand over time. Customers can easily notice when a product review is biased or fake.
In order to prevent these situations, you should only add honest feedback that contains both positive and negative attributes of the product.
This will give visitors extra confidence and help them decide whether this is the right option for their requirements.
Here's an example:
"This laptop is perfect for working at home. It has a great CPU and decent RAM. You can perform all your day-to-day tasks without issue. The display is perfectly clear, and the sound is impeccable. One of the things that certainly needs improvement is the keyboard. It's quite noisy and can be a bit disturbing. However, you will easily get over that in the first few days."
As you can see, the buyer has shared their honest point of view and offered valuable information to others.
4. Allow Visitors to Sort Reviews
Some visitors might be interested in seeing the highest-rated reviews first, while other shoppers might want to see reviews with photos.
Having an excellent review management system can make things more convenient for your customers and improve their overall experience with your brand.
Here are some frequently used options:
- Top reviews. This sorts reviews from the most positive to the most negative.
- Most recent reviews. This puts the most recent product reviews upfront.
- All positive. This displays only positive reviews, including four and five stars.
- All critical. This displays only negative reviews, including one and two stars.
- Only with images. This shows only customer reviews that include an image.
5. Respond to Reviews
Responding to your reviews can help solidify your reputation and make long-term customers. It isn't a complicated thing to do. Simply go through all the submissions and send a well-thought-out reply to each one.
Here are some tips:
- Respond as fast as you can
- Address them by their names
- Keep reviews short
- Be authentic and personal
- Double-check your response
6. Share Reviews on Social Media
In this digital age, social media platforms are unquestionably one of the most visited places right now. According to one report, the typical amount of time spent on social media is around 2 hours and 27 minutes per day.
Since your customers spend so much time on social media, sharing your product reviews on your channels can be a fantastic method to seize their attention.
It can help you get better reach in the social media space and build even more trust in your brand. How amazing is that? Here is a perfect example from the BeautyBeez store of how you can implement this technique.
7. Add Reviews to Abandoned Cart Emails
A well-optimized abandoned cart email can definitely help convert shoppers who leave purchases in their cart.
This is an excellent place to add your customer reviews. It will allow potential customers to see some of your most popular reviews and help them get back to their shopping cart and finish what they started in the first place.
Most people overlook this technique, but it can actually bring a lot of customers back.
Here’s a clever example from Casper, the award-winning brand for mattresses, bedding, and other accessories.
8. Add Customer Reviews to Ads
Getting the customer’s attention online can be incredibly difficult, particularly when using digital advertisements.
Anyone can say that their business offers “top-quality services!” or “affordable price tags.”
But, if you want to make your ads stand out from your competitors, you will want to consider adding customer reviews. Not just to stand out, but to boost sales as well. A recent study found that ads with UGC have a 4X higher chance of converting.
Here are a few ways you can perform this:
- Quote a specific product review (photo or video)
- Pick several text reviews and create a gallery
- Add the overall star rating of your retail brand
- Show the number of reviews/ratings
Do Negative Reviews Have a Bad Influence on Shoppers?
You will receive a negative review every now and then. But should you really worry about it?
Well, you shouldn't take them personally. Apologize for any mistakes and let customers know you're making specific improvements. Don't forget to do all of this in public so that other customers can see it as well. You can best handle them by trying to resolve the problems to grow even further as a company
Also, let us just say that readers can get quite skeptical if they see too many positive reviews. So, having a 4-star or 3-star review can sometimes be a credible source of social proof that can positively influence shoppers.
Imagine if you were searching for a pair of shoes and saw a product with only 5-star reviews. Naturally, the first thing that comes to mind is that the reviews might be fake. In most cases, you would probably decide to leave the page — and the store — to find a more trustworthy option.
All of the above-mentioned techniques can have a great influence on shoppers and their choices to buy a product. And the more product reviews your eCommerce store has, the more dependable it becomes.
Ultimately, this gives potential shoppers the reassurance they need to make further purchases, helping them turn from new shoppers into repeat customers. And when you are looking for long-term online retail profitability and growth, retention rates are key.