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According to industry research, 63% of shoppers are more likely to make a purchase from a store that has reviews (iperceptions, 2011) and 79% of shoppers trust reviews as much as a personal recommendation (BrightLocal).
Here at PureNet, review functionality has become an integral part of our Ecommerce Solutions built in our own bespoke platform WebPOS and Magento. We recognise that reviews have been proven to drive sales, while many shoppers expect to be able to read reviews before they decide to buy.
Why do you need reviews for your Ecommerce Solution?
The presence of reviews has been proven to increase conversions. Reviews can eliminate any doubts a customer has about a product and help their product selection. Improving your customer experience and the number of conversions should be the main purpose of user reviews.
There are also benefits to including reviews aside from conversions. Asking existing customers for product reviews can also help to make them feel as if they’re part of your brand or important to your business.
Reviews also allow customers to help you with your products’ SEO, as the content of their reviews can be indexed and used for search results. Many times, you may be targeting a specific keyword or set of words within your product descriptions. Customers usually write reviews using natural language which targets long tail keywords and helps to give you an SEO boost.
Can reviews improve SEO performance?
One clear potential benefit is ranking for searches including ‘product name’ + review. If a user is searching for your product and reviews the opportunity is there to rank higher than publishers. If you have reviews on your site then you stand a better chance of picking up this traffic.
Search engine spiders love unique content that is regularly updated and a customer review is a great way to attract fresh, relevant content. Most ecommerce solutions use the standard product descriptions often written by the manufacturer.
The addition of user generated content can differentiate your product page in the search results. This is important as it will make your pages more useful to relevant customers and will increase the chance of a higher ranking in the search engine results pages (SERPs)
What about bad reviews?
Even bad reviews can be helpful for your Ecommerce Solution. A poor review can help customers know what the worst scenario they can expect is. If all reviews are positive, customers tend to trust the reviews less. While it may be counter-intuitive, poor reviews help to give your customer reviews credibility and build trust between your store and customers. Customers will view you as more real instead of a scam site, which is essential for building a relationship as an online ecommerce store.
Studies suggest that an isolated poor review will influence 1 in 9 customers to avoid purchasing a product. However, 3 out of 4 customers deem reviews to be important to the purchasing process. While some negative reviews may cause you to lose some customers, you’ll lose a lot more who will avoid purchasing in the absence of reviews altogether.
So should I approve all reviews?
Set rules for review approval so if the review is libellous or uses obscene language, you can moderate or block it. Otherwise, we would recommend that you approve a review, even if it’s difficult to allow someone to speak negatively of your product.
You could always allow your team to respond to reviews in order to offer help or to resolve a situation. Always remember to be as polite and professional as possible. If you’re not asking a question in your response and are instead attacking the review it will look unprofessional to any potential customers. Use negative reviews as an opportunity to solicit feedback from unhappy customers and as another avenue for customer service.