11 Keys to Unlocking Success
This article covers the best practices for optimizing your customer review collection process based on insights from software company Trustmary. Customer reviews are a crucial marketing asset for any business. A BrightLocal survey shows that 98% of consumers read online reviews before purchasing. However, getting customers to leave reviews requires a strategic process. According to Arttu Haho, Product Manager of Trustmary, asking for feedback and publishing it as a review resulted in higher-quality responses.
Set Up Customer Review Collection Early
Don't wait to start collecting reviews after launching your product or service. Build review collection into your customer journey from the very beginning. Early reviews help establish credibility and social proof, which can help attract new customers.
Create a review collection campaign during pre-launch using a tool like Trustmary. Reach out to beta users, friends, and family to immediately leave initial reviews that you can display on your website. This provides social validation even before fully launching.
Choose the Right Review Collection Method
There are several ways to collect reviews from customers:
- Review collection forms on your website
- Follow up emails
- SMS review requests
- In-app review prompts
- Physical business – point of sale terminals
Evaluate your customer journey to determine the optimal collection method. For example, ecommerce businesses get the best results from post-purchase emails, while SaaS companies benefit from in-app review prompts.
Test different approaches to identify what converts best. For example, Trustmary found that asking for general feedback and getting consent to publish it as a review delivered higher-quality responses.
Time Review Requests Strategically
Timing is critical when asking customers for reviews. Trustmary says the best time is right after a purchase or service completion when the experience is fresh.
However, the ideal follow-up time varies. For SaaS, waiting 2-4 weeks before requesting a review allows customers to experience the product appropriately. For ecommerce, reviews can be ordered immediately post-purchase.
Set up automated reminders at optimal intervals to continuously collect reviews—batch review requests instead of sending everything at once.
Personalized review requests tend to yield better results than mass emails. Consider contacting your best customers individually to request reviews and highlight specific aspects of their experience.
Customize the messaging when sending automated review requests to tie back to each customer's purchase details or interactions. Personalization establishes a stronger connection.
Providing incentives can increase review volume. Offer a coupon code, discount, or reward points to customers who leave reviews. Disclose incentives clearly and ensure they still provide authentic feedback.
Consider rewarding customers who leave more detailed reviews or submit visual content like photos and videos. Incentives motivate the extra effort required.
Make Leaving Reviews Effortless
Streamline your review collection process for maximum conversions. Use mobile-friendly forms, single-column layouts, and large font sizes. Avoid making customers jump through too many hoops.
Enable review collection immediately after checkout for ecommerce sites. SaaS platforms should prompt app store reviews and in-product reviews through notifications. Removing friction boosts review volume.
Respond to Negative Reviews
Don't ignore or delete negative reviews. Publicly respond by apologizing, addressing the issue professionally, and outlining improvements based on the feedback.
Responding to negative reviews demonstrates responsiveness and strengthens trust in your brand. It also allows you to reconnect with dissatisfied customers.
Refresh Reviews Continuously
Regularly refresh your collection of reviews instead of relying solely on old testimonials. Maintains a balance of new and older reviews to convey longevity, according to Trustmary.
Set a goal for collecting the minimum number of new reviews each month. This ensures your website has an accurate, up-to-date representation of the customer experience.
Check Review Authenticity
Scrutinize reviews before publishing them to guard against fake or paid reviews. Look for overly generic language or unrelated details. Verify directly with the customer if unsure about a review's authenticity.
Maintaining review authenticity is critical for establishing trust and credibility with your audience. It also complies with FTC guidelines.
Promote Reviews Prominently
Once you've gathered great reviews, prominently showcase them on your website, product pages, blog posts, and other marketing materials. Display a mix of text, images, video, and audio.
Strategically place testimonials near calls to action. Customer endorsements provide social proof and nudge prospects closer to converting.
Track Review Performance
Leverage analytics to track review performance. Monitor metrics like testimonial views, clicks, and CTR. Experiment with different review content, formats, and placement using A/B testing.
This data reveals how your testimonials resonate and guide you in optimizing their impact further. Continuously improve your approach.
Optimizing how you collect, display, and leverage customer reviews takes effort but pays dividends. With a strategic process, reviews become a trust-building marketing asset that boosts conversions. Follow these best practices to turn customers into powerful advocates.
Conclusion: The Power of Strategic Review Collection
Customer reviews are invaluable marketing assets, yet collecting great reviews requires a thoughtful strategy. As we've explored, the key steps include setting up review collection early, choosing the optimal method, timing requests strategically, personalizing outreach, incentivizing reviewers, streamlining submission, professionally addressing negatives, continuously collecting fresh reviews, verifying authenticity, prominently displaying top reviews, and tracking performance.
By taking a strategic approach, you transform customers into powerful advocates. Their reviews become social proof that builds credibility and trust in your brand. This drives more conversions and revenue growth. Reviews also provide insights to improve products and services.
The effort to optimize review collection pays off exponentially. Savvy brands recognize the impact of reviews and dedicate resources to managing the process successfully. Don't leave this crucial marketing channel to chance. Implement a systemized approach to collect five-star reviews at scale. Let delighted customers spread the word far and wide. Their voices will propel your business forward.
View Featured Trustmary Podcast: Trustmary Product Manager Arttu Haho joins host Michael Bernzweig to discuss their customer review platform. Haho provides background on Trustmary and demonstrates key capabilities like collecting Google reviews, importing existing reviews, creating review widgets, and A/B testing review placement to boost conversions. He positions Trustmary as an easy, consolidated solution to systematically collect and leverage customer reviews for trust-building across industries.