Customer testimonials are extremely powerful in helping businesses drive more sales. But do you know how to ask for them?
Reading time: 5 minutes
Did you know that 92% of consumers read online testimonials and reviews when deciding whether or not to make a purchase? Furthermore, 88% state that they trust customer testimonials as much as personal recommendations.
Knowing this, it’s clear to see that businesses need to focus more attention on increasing customer testimonial volume as part of their strategy to drive more sales and higher conversion rates.
Read on to discover more about customer testimonials, including the reasons why they are so important and steps you can take to start collecting more reviews for your business.
What are customer testimonials?
Customer testimonials are quotes, personal anecdotes, reviews, or any other authentic endorsements of a business’s product or service offered in the customer’s own words.
They are recommendations from satisfied customers that affirm the value of said product or service.
Marketers have long since proven that customer testimonials have a higher effectiveness rating compared to other content types.
Recent studies on the impact of using testimonials in marketing also show that customer testimonials lead to massive benefits for businesses, including:
Social media reactions
More on-site traffic
… and various other KPIs.
For instance, this study from WikiJob shows that on average, testimonials on sales pages increase conversions by 34%.
Another study shows that if five testimonials are displayed on a landing page, conversion rates can increase by up to 270%.
Why are customer testimonials so powerful?
Customer testimonials are powerful for a number of reasons. They allow satisfied customers to address the doubts and objections that fill the minds of prospective buyers.
Nothing puts anxious minds at ease faster than hearing from other customers who are happy and satisfied after doing business with you.
This powerful marketing strategy works particularly well when selling higher-priced products as testimonials have a higher conversion impact in the pricier categories
Here’s a quick summary of the top benefits of using testimonials as part of your marketing strategy:
Improve Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Reviews help you win more search traffic with fresh, product/service-specific content naturally infused with important keywords.
Increase conversions: Emotion is a very effective way to persuade the mind and testimonials give you the opportunity to connect with customers on an emotional level.
Boost paid ads ROI: It’s been shown that when Google Ads include a customer review extension, they get increased click-through rates of up to 10%.
With positive customer testimonials, you’ll be able to establish your reliability and credibility as a business.
Even negative reviews can be of value by providing you with opportunities to show your audience that you take the time to make every situation right for your customers whenever you can.
But, before you can use customer testimonials to sway buyer choices in your favor, you first need to find effective ways for collecting them – and that’s precisely what we look at below.
7 tips on how to ask for customer testimonials
Listed below are some effective tips on how to ask for testimonials from customers. They are segmented according to different channels, and some of the channels discussed have multiple methods for requesting testimonials.
Choose what works best for your business and get started gathering positive reviews to boost your marketing results.
1. Use post-conversion feedback landing pages
An effective way to start gathering customer testimonials is to make your request on on-site elements like post-conversion feedback landing pages. Whether you’ve built your site from scratch, or use a trusted website builder, this is a simple task.
If a customer feels happy and satisfied with your solution and/or support process, it’s a good idea to politely ask for a testimonial as a follow-up to the transaction or conversation.
Just make sure to get the timing right. The customer needs to first get value from your product before you ask for a testimonial.
For example, suppose you’re selling software. In that case, there’s no point asking customers on a free trial or those who recently purchased the license to provide you with testimonials since their answers won’t be relevant to you.
A great time to ask for a testimonial is after the customer has gone through the whole buying process and had adequate time to familiarize themselves with your product.
So, for a SaaS company, this might be 30 days after the customer signed up for the license. For a digital marketing agency, the right time to ask for a testimonial would be right after a customer has achieved a specific goal.
2. Leverage email to ask for testimonials
Another effective way to get customer testimonials that rock is to use emails to inquire for testimonials after purchase.
As a marketer, you should always be following the customer’s journey. This way, you’ll never miss an opportunity to ask them for testimonials at the right time.
For instance, you can set up automated emails so every customer gets a testimonial request 4 weeks after their purchase.
Here’s an example of such an email:
As you can see, it doesn’t have to be long or complicated. In fact, the more concise it is, the more positive responses you’ll get.
You can further increase your chances of getting a positive response by setting up an initial email to ask customers how they are enjoying your product.
Make it easy for them to respond by including a call to action (CTA) button with the appropriate responses, such as smiley or sad faces, or even buttons with the options for “Great, thanks!“, and “Not so great“.
Depending on the customer’s answer, you can then send an automated email to either ask for a testimonial or, in the case of a sad face, send an email requesting feedback on how you can improve your product or service.
3. Use well-designed landing pages to collect testimonials
Another tip to help you collect more testimonials from your clients is to ensure that your landing pages are designed effectively, both on-site and through email.
Whether you are sending a targeted newsletter to request testimonials or if you have calls to action on your website, you might add something like a call now button because the landing page you use will play a huge role in the number of conversions you get.
It’s important to follow best practices to optimize your landing page to gather as many testimonials as possible.
Here are a few important ones to keep in mind:
Always put a face to the customer: Consumers typically trust testimonials more when they can put a face to a name.
Use customers’ own words: Let customers speak in their own voices. Although this may cause some discrepancy among the different testimonials, it also shows authenticity.
Use video testimonials: Although they are a bit more complex to produce and host, using video testimonials on your landing pages will do a marvelous job of conveying customer stories.
The best part is that when done right, your landing page testimonials will help to boost your SEO.
Reviews are naturally infused with longtail keywords that customers use to search for products and services.
Testimonials also create fresh and relevant content that proves to Google and other search engines that customers interact with your brand on a consistent basis.
The graph below shows the results of a survey performed by Yotpo. After testing 30,000 e-commerce businesses in different industries, the study found that average search traffic increased by about 45% after websites started using customer reviews.
Make sure your testimonials are in plain HTML and not Java or Flash to allow search engines to read them.
Also, use rich snippets or schema markups to make it easier for search engines to sort and understand the different testimonials and share relevant information on the results pages.
To supercharge this strategy, encourage users to leave longer testimonials by creating multiple fields on your forms or asking a series of questions so customers can describe your product or services.
4. Get reviews from Google My Business and Facebook Business
You can use platforms like Facebook Business and Google My Business to get more reviews from your customers.
In fact, both sites are equally beneficial for your business. While Google is ideal for helping you rank higher in search, Facebook can be instrumental in helping you connect and change people’s mindsets by conversing with them and solving queries on the social platform.
You can also get your Google reviews on the radar of your Facebook fans to make the strategy even more powerful.
Remember, every positive review you receive is valuable publicity to boost your brand and attract more leads for your business. So make sure you capitalize on all excellent customer feedback by showing it off to different audiences on different platforms, particularly vast networks like Facebook.
5. Encourage user-generated content on social media
Brands know that social media is one of the best places to share customer testimonials. Businesses that share authentic user-generated content (UGC) on social channels are constantly developing more trust with their audience.
Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and other sites offer great opportunities to publish customer reviews and testimonials alongside customer profiles and photos. What’s even better is that social media also offers a great opportunity for you to get users to offer reviews on those channels so you can create a consistent stream of customer reviews.
Video testimonials, in particular, can be extremely effective in increasing your conversions. That’s because they help users visualize the product details more easily and give them a clear picture of the impact the product or service will have on their lives.
6. Incentivize customers to leave testimonials
Sometimes customers need more encouragement in order to leave testimonials. One way you can do this is by incentivizing that action in a variety of ways.
For instance, you might create a social media challenge to encourage user-generated content from customers. You can then use this content across multiple channels as part of an effective customer testimonial.
You can run a promotion or sweepstakes to incentivize testimonial submissions. Share via social media or promote it through your email.
Prizes can be anything that your subscribers will find valuable, such as free T-shirts for anyone who leaves a video testimonial, or even an online course you build that provides a ton of educational value. Alternatively, you might offer them a discount on specific products or services.
This tactic works well because people are busy and if you want them to take time out of their day to record a video testimonial or submit a testimonial on your site, then you need to make it worth their while.
7. Use tools to drive increased reviews
A quick search online will reveal plenty of one-click integrations and apps designed to help brands increase their review volume.
One thing’s for sure, you must never underestimate the power of reviews and testimonials.
Sites like Amazon and Google place heavy merit on positive customer reviews — and with good reason. On both platforms, testimonials increase your search ranking and it’s well worth learning from this example to drive review volume for your own business.
And now that you have 7 effective tips on how to ask for conversion-boosting testimonials, it’s time to start collecting the reviews you need to reassure prospective customers that your product is tested and works great.
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