How many of us have noticed a new restaurant in our area, only to pull out our phone and immediately check the reviews? We do it so often that it’s become second nature. 

No matter how you slice it, reviews seem to rule the world around us. They can either make or break a decision to eat at a restaurant, buy coffee at a cafe, or make a purchase from an eCommerce store. 

If you run a business, product reviews instill trust in your brand and help improve your online presence. Email is one great way to collect them. 

Why do product reviews matter?

Collecting product reviews and feedback from your customers can help in many ways. They:

  1. Give your company a good reputation: Building a solid reputation is crucial for the success of your business. People want to buy from an online store that appears trustworthy and reputable. A staggering 88% of consumers say that they trust online reviews as much as they would a recommendation from a friend! 
  2. Build a rapport with existing customers: Asking returning customers for their thoughts on a product shows that you care and contributes towards building a rapport with them. Imagine how you would feel if your favorite brand asked for your feedback and then featured it on their website? You want your customers to feel important and that you care about their thoughts. Showing personal interest is an asset that can set you apart from your competition. 
  3. Provide you with testimonials: While you can work hard to create your brand, testimonials can speak louder than anything you could say. You can even create an entire area on your website or social media account dedicated to product reviews and what people say about your shop. This way, new visitors will know exactly where to go to find out what people think. These pages may even motivate them to buy highly-reviewed products, therefore increasing your sales.
  4. Gain valuable feedback. Reviews also help you hone in on areas that you can improve across your business. Perhaps multiple people comment that your return policy is hard to find or your shirts run large. You can gather that information and apply it in ways that benefit both previous and future customers.

Here are a few tips for requesting reviews:

1. Customize your emails 

Although you might use predesigned templates, this doesn’t mean that they need to be cookie-cutter responses. With all the spam people have in their inbox, you don’t want to get thrown in with unwanted messages. 

Start by customizing the email with their name. While you want to maintain a sense of professionalism, you also want them to view you as a friend. A simple “Hi there {subscriber name}!” or “How’s it going {subscriber name}?” will give your emails the personal touch you need to stand out from the crowd. 

Another way to customize your emails is by separating them by product and category.

2. Give a clear call to action 

Make it as easy as possible for your customers to leave reviews. The last thing you want is for them to feel that it’s another vague email that’s landed in their inbox. Instead, leave a clear-cut call to action at the end of your message. 

3. Timing is everything 

When using email marketing to increase product reviews, timing is everything. We’ve all been here: you download a new game app on your phone only to be accosted with a review request five seconds later. You haven’t even tried the game!   

It’s the same with product reviews. When sending emails, you want to wait long enough for the customer to get familiar with their purchase. This also means factoring in the time it takes for shipping.

4. Don’t annoy your customers 

While you want to get these coveted reviews, you don’t want to come across as pushy. It’s okay if some people don’t respond to your request for a testimonial. If they’re a repeat customer, there will be plenty of future opportunities to ask them for a review. 

Sending out requests for product reviews too often will have your customers unsubscribing faster than you can say “email.” Instead of spamming them, why not consider including an incentive in the subject line?

5. Thank them for their time 

Finally, and most importantly, you want to thank your customers for the time they spend filling out a survey or sending in their thoughts. Even a not-so-stellar review can give you some much-needed insight into how you can improve your products.  

Send behavior-triggered emails after a customer has filled out a product review. If you promised a discount, send it through. Otherwise, a simple thank you email gets the job done. 

Need a email marketing automation solution?  Speak to us!

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