Did you know that 91% of consumers between the ages of 19-34 trust online reviews? However, stats also show that consumers require a business to have at least 40 reviews before they will believe its rating.

If you’re a small business looking to increase sales, boosting your reviews is essential.

Not only will it make your business more credible in the eyes of new customers, but it can also increase revenue. According to research from Harvard Business Review, businesses enjoy a 5-9% revenue increase every time their average customer review rating goes up a star on Yelp.

The best part? Getting more reviews isn’t too hard if you know what to do.

Keep reading to find out our top 5 tips for getting more customer reviews for your small business.

1. Ask (at the Right Time)

The first and most important tip is to ask your customers for reviews. Unless they have a burning desire to share their experience of your business, most people won’t think to go and leave a review. In most cases, it is customers who either had a very positive or a very negative experience who will leave a review unprompted.

However, besides asking customers for reviews, you also need to make sure that you are asking them at the right time.

When Clients Are Happy

For one, you don’t want to ask for a review if a customer is feeling dissatisfied with their experience. If you do, they’ll probably leave a negative review.

Instead, you need to find out how they are feeling about their experience first. If they aren’t happy, you should try to remedy this before asking for a review.

When It’s a Relevant Time to Leave a Review

You also want to make sure you request reviews at logical points in the buyer journey.

For instance, let’s say you’re a small e-commerce site, and your products take an average of 5 days to reach customers.

What you don’t want to do is send out an email asking for a review right after your customers make their purchase. As they’ll only receive the product in 5 days, they can’t review it yet. By the time they receive it, they may have forgotten that you asked them to leave a review.

On the other hand, say you run a restaurant. In this case, it would be most fitting to ask customers to leave a review after asking them whether they have enjoyed their meal, not as they are sitting down to order.

2. Offer an Incentive

One very popular method for increasing customer reviews is offering an incentive. This could be something like points, a discount code, a voucher, or the chance to win a prize.

However, you need to be careful when offering incentives. Firstly, it can get you in trouble with review platforms such as Yelp and Google Reviews, as it is against their guidelines.

What’s more, it can also reduce consumer trust. According to survey results, 42% of consumers are less willing to trust incentivized reviews.

If you want to try out offering an incentive to customers, be sure that it is only for reviews or testimonials left on your own website, and not on third-party review platforms where this could get you into trouble.

What’s more, make it very clear to customers that you want their honest opinion, and they are not obliged to leave an all-positive review.

3. Send Customer Review Reminders

Another way you can increase your customer review numbers is by sending out email reminders. Let’s be honest, not all of us have time to tend to each email as it comes in.

If you have already emailed an invitation to your customer to leave a review, it can’t hurt to send out a reminder if the recipient takes no action.

Just make sure that you have the right email marketing tool in place to allow you to track which customers have already clicked your link to write a review. If you send out reminders to customers who have already left a review, this will be confusing and annoying.

4. Minimize Friction

One of the most important tips for encouraging customer reviews and customer feedback is to minimize friction wherever possible.

The less friction there is on the path to leaving a review, the more chance the customer will complete the process.

Start by making sure that customers can easily and quickly get to the page where they need to leave the review. If it’s on a site like Yelp, include a link directly to your profile.

If it’s on your own e-commerce site, link the individual products you’re asking them to review. Don’t direct them to, say, your home page.

If possible, also try to include links to multiple platforms so users can pick one they’re most familiar with.

Lastly, you can further reduce friction by letting customers know how long it will take them to leave their review. If a customer is worried they won’t have time to complete the process, they probably won’t even start. However, if you let them know that it will take, for instance, less than 2 minutes of their time—this might reassure them that they’ll be able to finish the review in the time that’s available to them.

5. Help Customers Formulate Their Review

Another way you can remove friction is by providing some customer review prompt questions to help people formulate what they want to say.

For instance, you could ask customers:

  • How was their experience with your business?
  • Did you solve their problem?
  • Would they come back?
  • Was the customer service prompt and friendly?

This can trigger customers into mentally formulating responses and increase the chances of them clicking over to write their review.

Are You in Need of Superior Email Marketing Tools for Your Business?

In today’s age, online reviews are vital to any business’s reputation, large or small. Fortunately, there are various steps you can take to trigger an increase in customer reviews.

Although you can ask customers in person, most customer review encouragement methods revolve around email marketing.

Are your email marketing tools up to the job of segmenting and targeting customers based on their buyer journey?

If not, it’s time you upgraded your email marketing arsenal. Here at Vertical Response, we specialize in giving you affordable access to top-notch email marketing software.

Head on over to our pricing page to compare options.

© 2021, Chris Duncan. All rights reserved.

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