From deciding whether or not to purchase the latest technology to what to order for lunch, we can all testify that peer reviews play a major role in our buying decisions. While word-of-mouth might be one of the most ancient forms of organic marketing, it hasn’t lost its charm today - rather, it’s disguised in this digital age under the name “social proof.”
Since peer opinions are just as effective as ever, it’s no shock that customer testimonials are the golden ticket to enhancing your website and overall business reputation. The powerful selling tactics we’ll present in this article will help boost your credibility and lead to conversions. That’s why we’re here to tell you what customer testimonials are, the most common examples, and how you can obtain them from your customers. Let’s begin.
What is a customer testimonial?
This is a review in verbal or written form left by a consumer about your product or service, and that you (as the business) decide to display on your page as a testimonial because it positively enhances your purpose. People write customer reviews for several reasons, one of the most important ones being to help other consumers make good decisions. Other motives relate to their relationship with the brand, as customers want to explain their pain points and what improvements they expect, leave a rewarding note for a satisfying service, or simply need their voice to be heard.
More descriptively, testimonials don’t always come out of an ordinary, everyday experience, but also, an exceptional encounter with a business. For example, a customer support representative going above and beyond their normal job responsibilities to hand deliver a customer’s product overnight. Once you receive customer testimonials, you should place them throughout your website - whether this will be on a page of their own, next to products and services, or at the bottom of your home page. There are different reasons to put customer testimonials in these locations, from boosting the credibility of a particular product, to emphasizing your business’ functionalities as a whole. No matter your intentions, customer testimonials are certainly worth your time.
Examples of customer testimonials
Whether you’ve asked for your customers’ feedback or they provided it to you out of pure gratitude, the review is only the first step. The raw material needs to be shaped in order for it to become a valuable testimonial. Testimonials can indeed come in many formats. Although your business industry, size, and personality can play a role into which ones you request, the following are the most popular to choose from. Likewise, you can choose as many as you like:
Starting simple, quotes are one of the most straightforward forms of testimonials. As users often speak of your company on different platforms and outlets, discovering these testimonials will only require a bit of searching. To make sure that your process is nearly effortless, you can sign up to receive alerts directly to your inbox by typing your company name as the keyword for Google searches (via Google Alerts) and social channels (via Social Mention).
When using a quote on your website, it’s best to include both the writer’s name and a picture of the user - although, only after obtaining customer approval - to strengthen the reliability for the readers. Nevertheless, not all customers will agree to that decision. If this is the case, you’ll need to keep the quote confidential.
Social channel testimonials
Since the world lives on social media today, this is one of the most common forms of testimonials - and one of the most convenient places to ask and receive customer feedback. Typically customers will leave social media testimonials after purchasing a product or interacting with your customer service department. These are usually presented in the form of a picture and/or written caption on a tweet, Instagram Story slide, or Facebook post - although all social platforms are fair game.
These can be found anywhere from Facebook to LinkedIn recommendations on employee pages, or home pages and product pages of business websites, and more. Customer reviews are directly related to consumers’ experiences with a business’s products and services, making them the easiest form of a testimonial to obtain. Customers usually like talking about how they were treated by a company, both positive and negative reasons included. According to a study, this statement is so true that 68% of consumers have left a review after it was requested by a local business. And according to another study, 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as they do personal recommendations. Are you convinced yet? We certainly are!
These are the game changers of today’s market. They’ve even replaced the power celebrities once had in terms of endorsements. Social media influencers are trend-setters because they have managed to establish large followings and credibility in their specific industries. People value their opinions on a very serious level. Therefore, receiving testimonials from them can be very advantageous. Additionally, they are more likely to work with you than the average customer if an incentive is put on the table. So, if you’re looking to gain valuable insight that your customers will care about, reach out to some of the influencers that are both popular and relevant in your industry and ask for their endorsements.
In testimonial terms, these are in depth analyses of customer experiences with a particular company that usually result in positively transformative behavior. Depending on your industry, a case study may or may not be worth your time. For example, if you’re a consulting company that provides expensive, long-term services for your clients, then your customer might find this information highly valuable. However, if you’re an online t-shirt store, a couple customer reviews might just take care of the persuasion efforts for you. It’s a lengthy process, but this form of storytelling can truly help you connect with your customers, as well as benefit your brand, by providing meaningful insights that you simply cannot express in other forms of testimonials.
Adults in the US spend an average of 5.5 hours watching video content everyday. As human consumption moves into the video streaming world, marketing tactics have shifted focus too. On top of that, user generated content is becoming a major trend in social media marketing. These facts alone can provide reason to reach out to your consumers and ask for video reviews of your products and services, then send them over or upload them to YouTube. On YouTube, you can create a playlist and share all of your reviews in one place. And since your website is the pivotal element of your online presence, it’s also crucial that you add a video section. A tool like Wix Video can come in handy here, enabling you to showcase your videos in the highest possible resolutions, whether uploaded directly on site or linked from a social platform like YouTube or Facebook, and enabling for social shares to make sure your testimonials are spread across the Internet. Learn how to shoot a video testimonial with this guide.
Taking the time to write out thoughtful questions, then spending some quality one-on-one time with your customers will be favorable for both sides - whether over phone, video chat, or in person. Interviews can include questions about the customer’s experience with your company: How did you feel about your interaction with our customer service department? Are you satisfied with your product or service purchased? What could’ve been done better? What shocked you the most about our business? There are many questions and many ways to frame them, just make sure to keep the conversation relevant. Overall, personally interviewing customers shows them that you truly care about their opinions. And from your business’ side, it’s inarguably great content for your testimonial page or blog.
How to obtain customer testimonials
When skillfully planning how you will obtain testimonials, consider how you can provide praiseworthy service to your customers beyond all other actions. The following are ways to obtain them:
Request it immediately after you’ve delivered on a promise.
Timing is everything. Once you’ve delivered on a service to your customer, you should follow up with a request for feedback. This can be anything from a customer just receiving their order to assistance from your support team, and anything else that provided value to them. If your company decides to offer live chat on your website, a great place to position this request is through a link to a survey at the end the conversation. At this moment, above any other, the customer will feel the most obliged to return the favor and leave a testimonial.
Send out an email one month after the purchase.
First of all, email marketing is free. And if you’re a Wix user, it’s extremely simple to design and send out customized emails thanks to Wix Shoutout. So, why one month and what should you send? If you’ve ever studied marketing, you know that a purchasing funnel ends with the “closing,” or “sale.” That’s certainly informative, but what about getting the customer to return and purchase more? To do that, you’ll first want to know how their experience went - but, without badgering them too early in the process. One month is usually plenty of time for your customers to test out the product or service and form an opinion on it. You can create a simple email that asks something along the lines of “Do you enjoy your new product or service?” and provides the options of “yes” and “no.” From here, the two answers can link to a website which includes a place for customer feedback. For more email tips, check out this customer service email guide.
Follow-up after you’ve improved.
So your customers won’t always be happy with you, but that doesn’t mean you need to give up just yet. In fact, you shouldn’t give up. This is the time to truly impress your customers and show that you’ve put forth the extra work to make them happy. Turn their frowns upside down by making the necessary changes to their experience. Only then can you access their true feelings about your company and request feedback.
Tune in to our guide.
There are many more strategies and outlets to get in touch with your customers and ask for their valuable feedback. From polls to comment boxes, social media, surveys and more, we’ve compiled an effective list of ways to ask your customers for feedback here.
Ready to provide testimonial-worthy customer support? Give the best customer service software a go!