There are so many reasons why customer reviews are important for any online service that it is simply impossible to write a single, sensible post on the subject. As this one will be the first of many we will try to focus on few aspects. In future publications we will try to split them...
Are customer reviews important for customers at all?
If you run any sort of business, not necessary online one you do it out of (mostly) 2 simple reasons. You want to earn money and you want to be happy. In both cases that means making your customers happy – with your product, with your service. For any sort of business a word of mouth is one of the most important advertising tool. Happy customer, engaged customer will always bring you new business. And there is no doubt that word of mouth is important for all of us and we rely on opinions of others when we make our choices regarding purchase of product or a service. In today’s world word of mouth has been perhaps not replaced but enriched with online reviews and social media.
There is a very interesting survey described in detail by Forbes. It shows, that 88% of people reading online reviews trusts them. What is even more important it the fact that this number grows. On the other hand only 12% of people does not read reviews at all. Math here seems to be quite simple. It is worth having a review section on home website.
Customers like Customers reviews, Google likes Customers reviews, you like Google…
No doubt, that Google is very important for any online business. In most cases effort of any online service goes two ways. Improving product and service and improving visibility in Google search. You may not realize this but customer reviews might play essential part in how Google will see your website. Each and any review is treated by Google as new and original content. So, if your customers have a place to express their opinions and you engage in honest discussion (we will come back to this part) you may get quite a lot of quality content for free.
What is more important, you may mark customer reviews in specific way, that Google will understood as a review. If you do that, there is a good chance that Google will index it directly and hold it as so called “rich answer” for other people’s queries. Such answers are then displayed by Google above general search results. More reviews also mean a higher conversion rate. And don’t “go mad” with moderation you need bad reviews or rather the ones with constructive criticism as well. There are two reasons for this. First, would you trust a product that is loved by 100% of users? Such thing simply does not happen. This is one of the reasons you need blend of reviews, to make you and your service look more trustworthy. Secondly, reviews of unhappy or unsatisfied customers are the best way for you to improve your product and service. After all (we mentioned that above) you made your product for your customer.
Our last advice is simple. If you engage in conversation with your customers it shows that you care. That there are humans behind a logo. And this personal aspect is important for all of us. Are you now convinced that you need place for customers reviews? Start it now.