One of the main ways bloggers build momentum online is by developing products which resonate with their readers. This is a great way to encourage people to continue visiting your website, and even earn some much needed income. Even after creating a product it’s important you market it the right way which involves using some thought-out strategies. For example, product marketing can be done by:
- Affiliate programs
- General advertising
- And others
Today, we’ll be looking at one of the MOST popular ways which involves writing product reviews. Why does this work so well? Simple…
With so many market places online many people like to search by product reviews. This means with higher reviews you have a better chance of selling your product to others. The higher the reviews also means a better chance to earn larger profits which meets your bottom line. Over the years I have worked with many different clients, some of which, have started their own products and done very well. I was able to learn a lot which has showed me how to generate the right amount of reviews quickly. This is important because you can encourage people to leave reviews which in the end help you sell your products. Let’s jump right in and look at the following as it applies to reviews:
- Encourage people
- Offer an incentive
- Let the them the importance
- Simplicity equals appreciation
Your feedback will be greatly appreciated going forward.
One of the best ways to generate enormous reviews is by encouraging people to leave them. This works well because many people who shop online want to help others by letting them know about the product. Over the years I created a system which is now available with many eCommerce hosting plans to send out follow-up messages to those who have purchased a specific product. At one point, this entire process would have to be done manually, but things have changed rapidly. Many eCommerce sites understand the importance of a review system so have built in the interface.
The system has been perfected over the years so all that left for you to do is create the follow-up which will be sent to customers. This is the message which will be sent after the item has been marked “shipped” or after a scheduled amount of time. I suggest writing out a genuine follow-up so people understand how it will be helping out your company going forward. For example,
- Please help our business grow
- Please tell others about our product
- Did you like your experience?
- And others
Obviously your message will be directed towards your niche so keep that in mind when writing out your follow-up message. Before I continue, this system is great because once it’s been set you can forget about it going forward. The entire system is automated so after it has been optimized and tweaked, you can focus on simply moderating the reviews which come through.
I’ll admit, many people don’t want to be bothered with leaving reviews so they won’t. To be honest, I’m the same way because I simply don’t have time to go around leaving reviews for every product I have purchased, but when an incentive is involved that changes the ball game. It has become popular practice to offer clients an incentive to leave reviews for a product or service they have just purchased. What is an incentive, and why does it work so well? There are two reasons:
First, an incentive is a product or service which is offered in return for something else which in this case will be an opinion. An incentive can be in the form of a monetary value, and the best way to determine what works is by trying different things until you find the highest converting. Incentive have long been used to encourage people to active participate in an event or opinion poll. They have been proven to be very value!
Second, incentives work well because these day’s things are very expensive, and the economy does have its up’s and down’s. Next, the times of getting something for free is pretty much obsolete so people always like to take advantage of an opportunity when they find one. With that said,
I encourage all of you who have a solid incentive in mind to implement it to their marketing strategy. Here are some ways:
- When someone buys a product send out a follow-up letting them know about the incentive for filling out a review on the product.
- Purchase virtual points which will be applied to someone’s account when they leave review on a product they have purchased. They can then redeem these points for their next purchase and serve as a free shipping discount or cash value.
- Offer an upgrade in shipping on their next shipping when they leave a review going forward. This works because people will get their item much quicker then normal.
- If customer leaves a review their name will be added to a ballet which will be drawn once a month. The winner will receive a discount on shipping, monetary value gift card or even a free product.
I recommend trying different things when first getting started keeping track of how each one helps grow your business. I’ll admit you have to do a lot of trial and error however in the end you’ll have a high converting eCommerce site which will generate enormous revenue going forward. What you decide to provide as an incentive will again depend on the niche you are involved in.
Simplicity = Appreciation
One of the best ways to encourage people to leave reviews is by telling them how much you appreciate the time they are taking out to help. Many times, we as companies, sometimes fail at showing appreciation to our customers which forces them to leave to our competition. You should say thanks when they shop, leave reviews or even refer people to your website which is way referral programs have become so popular over the years. However, let’s look at how simplicity shows your customers the appreciation they deserve. For example, it’s one thing to ask customers for reviews, but another to bombard them with a huge questionnaire…right?
One of my biggest pet peeves is when someone asks me for my opinion, and then takes 20 min of my time when they led me to believe it would be just a few. I believe in making things very simple for my customers because time is very scarce so people don’t want to be misled especially when they are doing you a favour. Going forward,
Make it simple for people to leave reviews by:
- Keeping the form simple, and right to the point
- Be upfront about the time it will take so they are mentality ready
You’ll be surprised how far these two can go into encouraging people to leave reviews. Remember, reviews add a lot of value to your business and the product so make sure you appreciate the time customers are taking to help you out. These days creating a form for reviews is NOT tough at all. For example, if you are using an eCommerce website then the form can be tweaked from the backend. Many times the form is already configured for simplicity, but if you have the option to add or remove fields then disable the unnecessary options.
If your creating the form on your own for your blog then again pay close attention to the important information. For example, if you don’t need to capture the address or phone number then don’t add that field. Keep the form simple asking only for the necessary information so you increase the chance of someone submitting a review. Next, I would encourage all of you to visit to other websites to see how they have created their review system. Just like you can learn a lot from the content your competition has written, you’ll be able to learn a lot from the review form embedded on their website.
Indicate the Importance
Many times you’ll be bloggers and selling products for other people so your investment isn’t much since it’s NOT your product. When you have a variety of products just like an ecommerce website then encourage people to leave reviews by letting them know the importance. A few years back I owned an online electronics shop and sold over 500 products until I close it down in 2009. One of the best ways I encouraged people to buy the best products was by letting them know the importance. I would tell them to help people make the right choice when shopping by leaving reviews on products which will hep them invest their money in the right place. This works in two ways for you as a shop owner:
First, the customer will spend money on a product which they are happy with, and because it was purchased through you then it increases the chances of continued business increasing profits. Secondly, it’s a great way for you to earn money on every sale because the customer will now invest on a better item. Reviews have helped steer buyer decision which has been evident many times probably even with you. For example, think about how many times you went to purchase a product or tool online, but decided to read the reviews first. You probably had your mind set on one item but decided to purchase a different one because of the reviews…right? I’ll agree many will choose a product based on price however serious successful bloggers won’t worry about price and strictly look at the quality. This in the end will translate into enormous profits going forward.
Here’s where I lay down the action plan going forward. I believe when you write about a topic then it’s important to give your readers a course of action going forward. They’ll be those which are experienced, but others who need a quick walk-through on what to do next. With that said, let’s explore some of the vital points discussed.
First, it’s important to encourage people to leave reviews because sometimes they simply forget. However, those involved in eCommerce can automate the entire process with a few clicks. Test and tweak your outreach so you find a follow-up which has higher then normal conversions. Secondly, incentives work well because people always love free things. If you have store you can offer monetary discounts or free upgrades to encourage user reviews. Third, make the review process simple because readers are doing you a favour. Finally, please reiterate the importance so readers or customers understand the importance of leaving a review.
Get started now by doing the following.
It’s important to understand your business model and how reviews will help you going forward. Next, re-evaluate your current review system looking for ways to make it better and more engaging. For example, look for the following:
- How attractive the system is and what can you do to make it stand out more
- How simple is your review system and can you make it even more easy for your customers?
- Check if you truly ask for the necessary information or are you asking for more
- How can incentives help you get more reviews?
In the end, you have to have a tracking system so you can evaluate how well each system works. Soon you’ll be able to determine how well each system converts compared to the other in getting more reviews for your website. Never under estimate the power of reviews and the mere fact many of the top blogs have them should be a good indication. Visit your competition to find creative ways to use your current review system.