If you own a business, you know how important great online customer reviews may be the bottom line. In fact, one 2013 study found that eight out of 10 customers trust online reviews as much as they trust personal recommendations.
So how do you go about creating online feedback? Here are some simple things to get you started:
Get social: If you do not have a Facebook page and Twitter account, now is the time to get one. If you already have Facebook and Twitter accounts, make sure you are checking them regularly for comments. You need to keep a close eye on social sites and responding to customer comments – good and bad – as they arise. And of course, you have to make it easy for people to find your social sites, as are links to your website and your email.
Make it easy to be good: Sure, you want to go on and on about how great your product or service, but customers may not be chatty. For verbally shy, make reviews easily by adding non-verbal features like multiple choice options or star-rating system.
Get your game: Ever heard of gamification? Basically, the term refers to websites that incorporate some form of game play in the design to make it more fun for customers to participate. You can get as complicated as you want, but even simple things like adding virtual badges trophy for customers who reviews can increase feedback.
Be generous: Everyone likes to score something for free, and offer free samples or free trial period can be very effective in getting customers to leave reviews.
Follow-up: A customer made just buy. Is it the end of the transaction? Not if you want to create some (mostly positive) reviews. When the acquisition is completed, touch base with clients to discuss both items they purchased and buying experience overall. When you get positive feedback, ask if you can share those stories on the site.
OK, so those are just a few ways to make judgments and opinions, but what should you do if some of the feedback is negative? First, set aside your anger and fury, and not stress: Every company is going to catch a little flak once in a while. Do not ignore the negative reviews; Instead, respond politely to deescalate and help calm customers. Try not to get into discussions about social site; Instead, invite customers to contact you by phone or email, or offer to contact them. Be sure to thank them for their feedback and apologize for the inconvenience they have found. And of course, if the review is on target, use it to make the necessary improvements.
Engaging customers and generate positive reviews takes work, but it is work that can yield big returns. Take a few minutes today to think about how your company can improve reaction and start building your own base their fans.