Asking your customers for feedback and testimonials is something that today’s businesses can do to get an edge over their competition. Online reviews are great for building up your company’s e-reputation, showing that your brand is credible, and providing social proof that consumers often look for before making a purchase decision.
A high number of reviews is preferable to a low number — unless, negative feedback predominates. A small amount of reviews is better than having zero.
- A whopping 80% of Americans read reviews before deciding whether to make a purchase, as stated in Online Reviews Statistics.
- People read product and service reviews for various reasons, the most popular being to ensure quality (79%), that it works as intended (61%), or to avoid getting scammed (53%).
- According to recent studies, 83% of shoppers discover new products through reviews every month. In addition, 7% of consumers need to read at least 20 reviews before they feel comfortable trusting a company.
Asking customers for reviews is one of the best ways to improve your company’s local SEO performance. By learning how to ask for reviews and encouraging customers to leave them, you can ensure that your business gets more and better reviews on a regular basis.Keep in mind that if you’re already giving your customers amazing experiences, they’ll be more than happy to leave positive reviews. All you have to do is remember to ask them! Oftentimes, this is the simplest way to get more five-star ratings.
If your goal is to improve or establish an online review management system, this tactic will help you whether you have 0 or 100 reviews. Asking customers for reviews (as long as you’re not being too pushy about it and aren’t offering rewards in return) is a strategy that can work well for businesses of all types.
Benefits of Asking for Reviews
Reputation boost. A stream of 5-star reviews from customers is not only a free way to advertise your business, but also increases social proof – resulting in more sales.
On average, businesses who request reviews receive 4.34 stars out of 5 from consumers: a higher rating than unprompted reviews (3.89 stars out of 5).
Usually, brands that ask for reviews produce more 5-star ratings; These are probably going to stay consistent. Meanwhile, unprompted reviews have a bigger amount of 1-star ratings; However, the overall rating is prone to decreasing eventually.
By proactively asking for feedback, you can strengthen customer relationships and connect with the voices that matter most. Asking for reviews at the right time can also turn your happiest customers into promoters and word-of-mouth catalysts who will write positive reviews about your company on business review sites.
Google and other industry experts agree that a company’s reviews (count, ratings, text) play a role in its organic and local search ranking. In other words, the more reviews you have, the higher you’ll rank on search engine results pages (SERPs), making it easier for customers to find your business.
According to research, if you increase the number of reviews on your website, it will lead to a significant improvement in conversion rates. If review volume increases by 8 to 100 reviews, not only will conversion rates improve, but natural search traffic will as well.
Customer reviews can be used as data assets for your marketing efforts, just like tweets and Facebook posts. However, reviews have a longer shelf life.
A tweet’s shelf life is minute, with the median lifespan being only 18 minutes. Furthermore, 75% of engagement on a Facebook post occurs within the first 5 hours. As for reviews? They stick around for 3 months until they become irrelevant to consumers–or at least that’s what 69% of them believe.
In other words, what customers said on Yelp or Tripadvisor two weeks ago is more credible than what another customer said on Twitter or Facebook two days ago.
If you’re monitoring social reviews and conversing with social media users about your brand, why not also learn how to ask for reviews? With their long shelf life and ability to expand your digital footprint, they can serve as an integral part of marketing infrastructure.
How to Ask for a Review: Keys to Success
If you want to reach out to your customers and ask for a review, here are some best practices and techniques that will give you the best chance of success.
Ask for Reviews via Email
You can generate new reviews effectively by sending out review request email campaigns. These campaign emails often take the form of customer surveys, though they can also be simpler and more direct, with just a link to a page where your recipient can write a review.
Email should be your top priority when asking for customer reviews. According to research, as much as 70% of all customer reviews come from post-transactional review request emails. Not only that, but by asking for reviews via email, you can tie them to specific transactions—making them more authentic and valuable.
Evaluating customer loyalty and satisfaction levels is only part of the benefits you’ll reap when you request reviews via email. You’ll also be able to identify which customers are likely recommend your business versus those that won’t, based on their replies.
Best Practices: Asking for Reviews through Email
Having defined goals is crucial if you want your survey to be successful. What are your objectives? Do you merely want more reviews, or do you also want to assess customer loyalty and satisfaction with your customer service? If so, then make sure that net Promoter Score questions are included in your survey. By taking the time at the beginning of your project to identify its goals, you will be able save future headache by making sure that only relevant information is collected throughout the process.
If you want a more comprehensive guide, read our post on the best customer feedback questions examples you can ask in these types of surveys. It’s important that your email feels personalized so that recipients will be encouraged to open and respond to it.
Make it brief. Likely, you can’t remember the last time you took a 30-minute survey. If your email asking for feedback or your survey takes too long to finish or even read, there’s a chance respondents will stop before they’re done.
Keep your message clear and concise. omit unnecessary questions or terms that will probable confuse your customers. If you want them to leave a review on a particular website, say so directly and provide easy-to follow directions on how to do it.
It’s best to ask for a review score or star rating at the beginning rather than the end. Why? Because it’s a crucial question that requires an immediate reaction, and if you wait to 5-10 minutes after asking other questions first, the customer might not give an accurate response.
Give your reviewers a middle ground. If you’re using a rating system in your review request campaigns, make sure to give them a way to say they are unsure or have mixed feelings. Not only does this provide better data (which is backed by research), but it also gives the respondents an easy way out if they don’t know how to answer.
If you don’t plan on using scales, restricted your questions to those that can be answered with a simple “Yes” or “No.” If your questions are more complicated than that, provide respondents with pre-selected answers instead. This will make it easier for them to understand and answer the question.
If you receive negative feedback, address the customer’s complaints right away. Timely responses are essential; if you wait too long, the mad customer might never come back!
Always test, measure, and adjust your campaigns to get the best response rates possible and collect feedback that is most useful to you. In today’s customer-driven market, people will have different interactions and experiences with your company at various times.
How to Ask for a Review: Use These Templates for Email
If you’re unsure of what to write in your review request message, here are some subject line and message ideas that may help inspire you.
Subject line templates and examples
“How did we do?”
“We’d love to hear your feedback!”
“Got a minute to share your experience with (Company Name)?”
“We want your feedback.”
Message templates and examples
“Hi (First Name of Customer), Thank you for visiting (Business Name)! It was our pleasure helping (service you provide). Reviews help our business build an online presence and helps others learn about us. Would you be willing to take a few minutes to leave us a review? You can click this link (direct URL to your review website profile) to leave us a review. Thank you in advance for taking time to share your experience. We appreciate your business!”
“Hello there, (First Name of Customer)! I hope that your recent visit to (Business Name) exceeded your expectations. We would appreciate it if you would take a few minutes to share your experience on one of the review websites linked to in this email. Your feedback helps us improve our ability to provide you with the best service possible. To write a review, click one of the links below and you will be sent directly to the correct page for posting your review. Thank you again for your support. (direct URLs to your review website profiles)”
“Hi (First Name of Customer)! Thank you again for choosing (Business Name). It’s our priority to continue providing top-notch service to customers like you. Please leave us a review on our profile on (review site, with direct URL to review website profile). It will only take a minute, but your valuable feedback will help us improve and make a huge difference to our company. Thank you!”
Request Reviews via SMS
A majority of online reviewers use mobile devices, which is unsurprising considering the increase in voice dictation typing and social media platforms that favor shorter reviews. With this technology, consumers can easily write reviews for brands straight from their phones or tablets.
If you send customers a text message survey or a review request via SMS, there’s a better chance they’ll click on that link than emails. Text messages are opened at a 98% rate, whereas email typically has a 40 to 50% open rate. Additional research shows that 90% of SMS messages are read within 3 minutes.
Still, crafting your review request for SMS requires careful thought — perhaps even more so because of this channel’s character limitations. Here are a few review or feedback SMS templates to help you achieve high response rates.
How to Ask for Reviews: SMS Templates
How to ask for a review with a text message? Here are some actionable feedback SMS templates to inspire your text surveys and review request campaigns via SMS.
“Thank you for being a customer.” This basic template is great to help you get started. It doesn’t require your customer to give up a lot of data or make a big effort to post a review. “Hey (First Name of Customer), thank you for visiting (Business Name) today! To help us best serve you and others, could you click on this link (review website profile link) to answer one question about your experience today? Thanks!”
“Will you review us on (Review Site)?” This template helps you increase your reviews on a specific online review website where you might be performing poorly. “Hi (First Name of Customer), thank you for doing business with us. Do you have 1 minute to leave a review on (review site) about your experience with us? Just go here: (review website profile link). Thanks for your help!”
“Review our location.” Thank your customers for visiting your outlet or local branch and ask for a review as well. “Hello (First Name of Customer), thank you for your recent visit to our location in (City). We here at (Business Name) want to provide you with the best experience possible! To help us, please take a moment to leave your feedback. Click here (review website profile link) to review. Thank you.”
“Your opinion matters.” Establish a stronger relationship with your customer by allowing them to feel like they have a voice. “Hello (First Name of Customer), your opinion matters to us. Could you take 1 minute to leave us feedback on your visit to (Business Name)? This link will take you to a quick survey with 3 questions. We appreciate your help!”