The Importance of Customer Reviews in E-commerce

Business

Sixty-one percent of potential customers read online reviews before making their final decision, and more than 90% are influenced by positive reviews.

User reviews are real sales drivers, and they’re becoming even more important. You can say whatever you like about your product, but your website visitors may think that you do it in order to generate more sales for your company. Undoubtedly, customer reviews in e-commerce increase your conversions simply by using them. Your customers tend to believe their peers instead of the business owner or a salesperson.

Some statistics on how effective customer reviews are in e-commerce:

  • Sixty-three percent of customers are more likely to buy from a website that has user reviews (iPerceptions, 2011).
  • Customer reviews are nearly 12 times more trusted than descriptions that come from manufacturers, according to a survey of US Internet users by online video review site EXPO (eMarketer, February, 2010).
  • Reviews produce an average 18% uplift in sales (Reevoo).
  • Fifty or more reviews per product can mean a 4.6% increase in conversion rates (Reevoo).

Considerable SEO advantages

Using fresh and long testimonials and reviews strengthens your position in different search engines too. These include:

  • The content written by your customers increases the chance of ranking well for long tail searches. Also, people typically use the same language as your other customers, so it becomes easier for them to find your website.
  • Search engines prefer regularly updated content, so customer reviews are a great way to attract more visitors. The reviews can be your competitive edge since many websites use the same product description and website copy in your industry. Customer reviews will help you rank better in different search engines.

Since around 64% of potential customers read reviews before purchasing, many of them will look for your product’s name + ‘review’ or ‘rating.’ When you have customer reviews on your website, you can catch this traffic easier.

If you have a simple rating or review below you product’s name and image, your click-through rate can increase even by 10-20%.

Best ways to get more customer reviews

You should always keep the reviews organized on your website. No one likes to look at a haystack of reviews without any order.

  • Use a third-party review provider, such as Wiremo. It gives you more credibility and persuasive power. These reviews are all authenticated, so the reader knows the reviewee actually bought the product before. Many retailers, like Comet, Tesco or Argos, use this kind of software.
  • After their purchase, you should email your customers and ask for their opinion. Timing is a key issue here. You should send out the email when they already have their product in their hands and have started using it. They need some time to form their opinion. This really worked for M&S, as they increased their customer feedback by more than four times.  
  • Another great option is to ask for reviews on product pages. Be aware of attracting already existing customers who already used the product.
  • You can offer incentives for leaving reviews. For how to do it properly without breaching any law, see our article on it. 
  • Simplify the whole procedure as much as you can. Many times, people want to leave their comment but it’s so overcomplicated that they can’t. Another option is to let them give a rating on a scale from one to five or ten. A lot of people don’t have time to pen words as a review.

As you can see, customer reviews increase your sales and revenue simply by using them. When people glimpse that their desired product has reviews, their objections disappear and they buy it with fewer doubts.

 

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