The majority of customers (94%) claim they have consulted online reviews before making a purchase. Therefore, online reviews are an essential factor for attracting new customers and developing trust.
Not only do reviews influence purchasing decisions, but they also contribute to brand discovery and visibility on search engines. And of course, valuable customer feedback is what helps to continually improve customer experience.
So how to collect feedback from customers and build an outstanding overview of customer experiences that draw in others? Keep on reading to find answers to these questions.
Table of Contents
- Effective ways how to collect feedback from customers
- Send a thank you SMS message with a review request
- Follow up with an email after their purchase
- with customers while doing so:
- Encourage feedback via customer service
- Some feedback questions to ask after correspondence with your customers:
- Add a customer reviews section to your website
- Include your business up on third-party sites
- How to increase your chances of getting a review?
- Extra tips on how to build trust with customers
- How to deal with negative feedback?
Leveraging customer service omni channel approaches can help to gather well-rounded feedback. Here are some of the most effective options for how to ask for a review after an encounter with a customer.
79% of customers have shopped online on their mobile phone and made a purchase in the past 6 months. As people are so active on their mobile devices, it’s a perfect place to reach them and offer a quick and convenient way to submit a review.
Implementing anSMS marketing strategy helps to develop a personalised relationship with your customers. Text messaging is used by many businesses due to its high open rate (98%) and responsiveness (3 minutes on average).
Sending a thank you message is a nice gesture to show your appreciation of customers choosing to shop with you and encouraging them to leave a review on their shopping experience.
However, before starting contacting customers via SMS, you need them to opt-in.
But once you have successfully built a subscribers list and have familiarized yourself with the anatomy of a perfect text message (Introduction, body, CTA, short links, opting-out), SMS is a great tool for developing long-lasting relationships with your customers who are likely to put a good word out there for you.
Most of us check our emails every day and for 58% of people, email is the first thing they open when they come online.
To effectively collect feedback via email, send it out a few days after the order is delivered. This way you will be able to receive more meaningful feedback as the customer has received their order and hopefully has had time to test out the product.
Some guidelines to follow for succeeding with your review request email and building enhancing your relationship
with customers while doing so:
- Keep it brief. We live in a fast-paced world where information is easily lost among everything else. Keep it simple and on point.
- Be polite. Customers are helping you out by writing you a review. Always say “please” and let them know how much you appreciate their feedback.
- Showcase your brand. It should be absolutely clear who the review request email is from and what was ordered from you for boosting the chances of receiving an honest review.
What is more, hosted ecommerce platforms like Shopify offer plugins to ongoingly collect feedback about each product from your store customers.
Another way to build trust in business is via effective and reliable customer service. In fact, even after a business has made a mistake, 78% of customers are willing to forgive the company and come back if they provide excellent customer service.
Therefore, once someone has reached out to you with their inquiry and you have been able to solve their issue, it’s time to act.
Some feedback questions to ask after correspondence with your customers:
- How satisfied were you with our service today?
- Were you able to get answers to all of your questions?
- Was your issue solved in a timely manner?
- What would have made your experience better?
- Did we meet your expectations while solving the problem? If we didn’t, what else could have we done?
Such questions help your customer service team to enhance their performance in the future and can go hand in hand with a review request especially if you feel confident your customers felt satisfied with the service you provided.
Your business website is your digital storefront and making a good first impression is crucial to stand out among the competition.
As almost every visitor will be consulting reviews before deciding if they want to shop with you, make it very simple to get access to what others are saying about you. For this, you could add reviews to different sections of your store:
- Consider placing a few reviews or testimonials that have given valuable insight right onto your homepage. Usually, the review about the brand is in quotation marks clearly showing who the client is. To establish credibility you may link to the person’s website or a case study.
- Publish reviews on product pages if you have received feedback on specific items. This will speed up the purchase decision process.
- Set up a separate review section where customers can have a good overview of all the reviews submitted.
There are many other options for customers to review your business besides on your own website. Happy customers are willing to write reviews as soon as they’ve had a positive experience, so leaving feedback should be made very simple.
For this reason, you should set your business up on third-party sites that customers are used to using. Start with the most known such as:
- Google My Business
You can also expand to industry-specific platforms that are relevant for your business (e.g. Tripadvisor and Trustpilot).
77% of customers would be willing to leave a review if asked. To boost your chances of receiving a review, make sure to follow these steps, no matter your communication platform:
- Adjust your approach. When sending out feedback questions, tailor them to the customer or customer segment in question. Always give out a specific reason why you’re asking them for the feedback (e.g. they purchased from you, had correspondence with your customer service reps, were a beta user of a new product, etc.) and how the feedback will be used.
- Be clever about the timing. It’s not effective to ask for product feedback if the customer has only just made a purchase or send a review request email if it’s been a long time since your last correspondence. Try to see the process from the customer perspective and figure out when you yourself would be most likely to leave a review for a product or service.
- Make it easy for customers. Always include a clear call-to-action together with a link or a button, and emphasise that the process won’t take long.
- Show your gratitude. Whenever a customer leaves you feedback, thank them either via automated email or through a personalised thank you gift.Customers are doing you a favour by taking time to leave you feedback. Sometimes a little gift for their contribution such as a small discount, a coupon or a personalised perk (e.g. product bundle) can go a long way in building trust.
86% of customers are willing to pay more for a great customer experience. While other customers’ reviews can back up that this is exactly what your business provides, you want all the visitors to get a feel of a great customer experience as soon as they arrive on your website.
In order to get new customers interested in you and perceive your brand as trustworthy, some e-commerce strategies to use are:
- Combining aesthetics with functionality. While the look of your website is a crucial element to show professionalism and your brand uniqueness, all aspects of your site need to be functional, making customers’ shopping experience easy and pleasurable. This can be done by categorizing products, using collapsible sections, search bars, etc.
- Providing a multi-channel experience. Send email newsletters, run social media competitions, deliver great personalised deals via SMS and make your brand more noticeable.
- Creating personalized product recommendations. Know what your customers are into by identifying shoppers with similar purchases and recommend something relevant and thus increasing your sales. For example, you could display extra items under “others who bought this also bought…” or “we think you might like these too…”
- Personalize your messages. To create a stronger connection with your customers, targeted messages are proven to be more effective and contribute to higher engagement rates.
No matter what you do, sooner or later you will receive some negative feedback. Unfortunately, customers who have had bad experiences tend to be more likely to leave reviews than those who have had a positive (or a neutral, therefore uneventful) experience.
The first step to take in case of negative feedback is to understand what and where went wrong. Think if there’s anything you can do to make the specific situation better while also thinking about how to avoid similar situations in the future. As stated above, great customer service can make up for a negative experience.
In case the negative feedback comes in the form of a review visible to everyone, personally reach out to the customer who left the review and try to resolve the issue. At the same time, reply to the review online promising to find a solution to the problem.
By replying to your reviews, you show prospective customers that your goal is not only to make a sale but provide a good experience altogether.
Once you have been able to solve the issue, you could:
- Add a new public response. Outline what you did to solve the problem and what was the outcome. Always keep a friendly and positive tone and avoid coming across as accusatory or negative no matter the situation.
- Ask for a revised review. If you have been able to work together with the customer who left the negative review in the first place and have built a relationship of trust, you can consider asking them to leave a new review or edit the one they left previously.
Avoid simply deleting reviews that you don’t like but use them as learning points to improve your product and services as well as your relationship with the customer who left the review.
Without a doubt, consulting customer reviews have become an essential part of customers’ shopping habits. This means that businesses have to master the art of collecting feedback and dealing with negative feedback to attract new customers and at the same time use it for product/service improvements as well.
By implementing the strategies covered, it’s possible to build a great online presence for your brand that makes prospective customers feel they can put their trust in you.