- Customer Experience
- Ecommerce Marketing
- Reviews and UGC
Site Speed and Why It Matters for Your Reviews Program
Lindsay Kolinsky | Nov 30, 2023
Feb 14, 2023
Director of Marketing
How to collect more reviews, social proof and zero-party data for CRO
Customer reviews have become an increasingly critical component of any effective ecommerce digital marketing strategy. More than lending credibility to your brand, a truly optimized review program can help establish a deeper sense of trust among your customer base, enhance your ability to collect and leverage valuable customer insights, and lead to a significant boost in your conversion rate.
As Mario Vassiliades, Owner of Digital Agency Series Eight notes, “Positive reviews on your website are a powerful form of social proof to reassure the customer that you have a credible product and encourage them to make that final decision to check out.”
While displaying high-quality reviews is the ultimate driver for conversion, brands must first focus on the review collection process in order to set themselves up for success. In this blog, we’ll explore a few easy steps you can take to maximize high-impact review generation that results in more social proof, zero-party data (ZPD), and personalized communications to ultimately drive more revenue for your brand.
The reality is that simply providing your customers with the option to give feedback isn’t enough to truly maximize review generation. This is why brands should never take a customer’s willingness to voluntarily submit a review for granted. With that said, there are specific things you can do to encourage your customers to not only write a review, but include more in-depth product feedback and social proof.
Effective communication is a critical piece of building trust, which should be one of your primary objectives when utilizing customer reviews. Be sure to focus on communicating with your customers in a way that reflects your brand. Okendo’s integrations with platforms like Klaviyo and Attentive allow you to build customized review request emails & SMS that reflect your branding, instead of sending out generic requests. This will help open up a dialogue and build deeper customer relationships, and can even convert a one-time shopper into a lifelong customer and advocate of your brand.
One particularly useful action you can take is to integrate incentives into your reviews strategy. When you offer something attractive in exchange for high-quality, content-rich feedback, whether it’s a discount code, loyalty points, or even gift cards, research has shown that customers are 73% more likely to submit a review. Of course, it’s critical to remember that the strategy you deploy will be just as important as the offer itself.
While a 5-star rating is valuable on its own, it doesn’t provide the same level of social proof as a review that includes user-generated content (UGC) such as photos or videos featuring your product. With Okendo, you can encourage in-depth, high-impact reviews by offering tiered incentives based on content type. For example, you might offer a 5% discount code for a simple text review, 10% for a review that includes a photo, and 15% for a review that includes a video. And don’t forget that incentives can come in all shapes and sizes. Beyond discounts, Okendo helps you take your incentive strategy to the next level by offering loyalty points or gift cards using integrations with LoyaltyLion, Rise.ai, Smile.io, and Eber.
75% of Okendo reviews are submitted using a smartphone or other mobile device, so it’s critical to have a mobile-first mentality when it comes to capturing reviews. This might mean prioritizing SMS communications and reminders, or more broadly ensuring that customers enjoy an intuitive, frictionless user experience when creating and submitting a review of your product on their mobile devices.
The quality of your reviews is just as important as the quantity, and reviews that are rich in content are the holy grail. Their descriptiveness, authenticity, and transparency have the power to grab the attention of prospective buyers and drive conversions. It’s therefore crucial that you leverage their full potential by making sure that they’re highly visible on the product page to all customers.
When asking for a review, it’s important to include the features below to ensure all of your reviews have a maximum impact on conversion:
In addition to gauging customer satisfaction, shoppers often turn to reviews to learn more about the specifications or attributes of the product. For example, when considering an item of clothing, such as a sweater, a customer may want to know if the product runs large, small or true-to-size, as well as how the material feels on the skin. Using Okendo’s customizable review widgets, you can easily ensure high-impact product attributes are showcased front and center on your product display page (PDP), making it easier for customers to get the information that helps them make a more informed purchase.
Okendo review widgets can also be customized to showcase high-impact customer attributes, which allow new shoppers to align their purchasing decisions with other customers who have similar characteristics or needs. When shopping for a skincare product, for example, a customer may want to know how the product worked for a customer who has the same skin tone, or who shares a similar vulnerability to allergic reactions. Similar to product attributes, providing easy access to this information can reinforce trust and increase the likelihood of conversion.
Every day, customers turn to the direct experiences of other like-minded people on social media to make more informed purchasing decisions. While staged photosets and influencer advertisements might be flashy and nice to look at, new shoppers are simply more likely to connect with content that comes from real customers. In fact, recent Okendo data shows that 87% of consumers say that UGC included in product reviews improves their value in informing their purchase decision. Using Okendo, brands can easily customize their PDPs to highlight reviews that include photos and videos uploaded by actual customers, establishing real trust and driving sales in the process.
With regulators and big tech tightening controls around privacy, businesses now face the additional challenge of adapting their data collection strategies to keep pace with the rapidly evolving digital landscape. As a result, brands are increasingly looking to zero-party data — valuable information that customers voluntarily share with your brand — in order to navigate the constantly evolving privacy landscape.
This data, largely consisting of demographic and behavioral data about your customers, not only allows you to better understand how they use your products, but also empowers your team with actionable insights that can be used to create more personalized marketing campaigns.
Here’s a brief overview of how reviews can help you maximize zero-party data and put it to work for your brand:
Using Okendo’s customizable review widgets, you can ask customers to submit information such as age, demographics, and interests during the review capture process. These insights can then be synced to the user’s unique customer profile to get a single view of each one of your buyers.
Data that is stored in the Customer profiles created through the collection of zero-party data can then be synced to the ESP and/or SMS platform of your choice, allowing you to create audience segments based on attributes and target those audiences with product recommendations, exclusive offers, or educational content that encourages ongoing engagement with your brand.
As you continue to layer this reviews data on top of additional insights gathered from Okendo Surveys, you’ll gradually learn more about your customers and audience segments, as well as the effectiveness of your campaigns. Over time, this can considerably improve your brand’s ability to create increasingly effective, hyper-personalized offerings.
Overall, maximizing review generation with Okendo will help reveal the true value of an effective reviews strategy tailored for the digital age. Between leveraging incentives to boost engagement, optimizing how content-rich reviews are displayed on PDPs, and increasing the inflow and impact of zero-party data on revenue creation, Okendo provides both the formula and tools to stand out and succeed in an increasingly competitive online marketplace.
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