Sar ReviewsIf you are searching for a stellar approach to accelerating your company to the next level in sales, then consider tapping into customer reviews. There are a number of excellent benefits such as: sales, SEO, brand management, etc. all from acquiring online reviews.

As technology advances and people are becoming increasingly capable of researching smart purchasing decisions with consumer reports and listening to customers and friends online. As this tactic builds, you need to embrace reviews or feel the sting of lost opportunity. Reputation Advocate comprised research data and discovered that 87% of consumers say positive reviews guided their purchasing decision!

Infographic_Customer-Reviews

So how can you, a Magento user, tap into the world of reviews? Take a look at these techniques designed specifically for Magento stores:

Adding Reviews

Magento, by default, offers product reviews for you. See these instructions on how to enable product reviews for your store.

If you would like to jazz-up your reviews a bit more, checkout the Recent Reviews extension that allows you to showcase reviews on your home, category, and product pages.

Emailing After Purchase

This is a very classical and simple technique to building reviews. Once a customer purchases a product from your website, an email is then sent to them requesting a review of the product. Depending on the extension you use, you can generally configure the number of days after that must pass before the email is sent.

YOTPO has a good product that you can integrate into your Magento store for this purpose. Aside from sending the email requesting a review, YOTPO allows users to share their review socially - an added seo and brand development benefit!

OPC_Yotpo Reviews

Since the search engines are starting to include social signals into the search results, it is important that you consider a strategy that maximizes your benefit. With YOTPO, you can manage your reviews before they are published on your website. You can even share the review on the company's social media platforms.

Complementing Your Customers

It can be argued that offering rewards in exchange for reviews seems unethical, and I agree. However, it is perfectly permissible to reward someone after they leave a review.

To build a quality brand and customer base, consider thanking your customers when they write a review of your products and services. This could be as simple as personally sending them a thank you message with a coupon or discount code. Let them know that you value their opinion...this can apply for negative reviews as well.

You can also automate the process with a Discount for Review extension. Similar to YOTPO, an email is sent to the customer after they purchase your products requesting a review. Once you approve their reviews, they are emailed a special discount code to use on their next purchase.

Filtering Reviews

Be sure to keep a close eye on your reviews. If you automate your review system to publish reviews without an approval process then you will definitely want to monitor your reviews.

Watch out for spammy reviews that contain links to dangerous sites. Search engines might penalize you for linking to these bad sites so be careful. For the most part, you will be able to identify these messages. It is best to not allow links in your reviews section.

Here is a spammy review left on a clothing apparel's store:

Spam Review

Don't be afraid to approve bad reviews of your brand. The goal with reviews is to build trust between the customer and your product so don't hide reviews from them. If there are negative reviews, take the time to respond to them individually. This will show your customers that you are concerned about their comments and seek to provide the best product for their need.

Time to Talk Benefits...

SEO

Google Panda & PenguinThis has been a very busy year for Google. Google made big algorithm changes when both Panda and Penguin rolled out. Since then, Hummingbird has been released though this is not an adjustment to the algorithm...it is the new engine powering the algorithm.

What does this mean for you? Fresh content is the beloved of these updates. Adjusting or writing new content for your product pages requires a lot of time that you probably don't already have. Thus, adding reviews that are scalable for the search bots eliminates your worries.

With new reviews constantly being added to your pages, Google will take the fresh content and start using it for your rankings.

You can implement review rich snippet to better label your reviews for Google (learn more about rich snippets). The major benefit to adding this snippet is to get your review rankings to appear in the search results with individual or aggregate reviews:

Individual Review

Individual Review

Aggregate Review

Aggregate Reviews

 

How will this help sales?

It is easy: 87% of customer's use reviews to make purchasing decisions. All you are doing is providing them the reviews so they don't have to hunt them down on other websites (if they are that determined to research your product).

Sales will increase if you start rewarding your customers for their reviews. Think about it, you are giving them an incentive to come back and purchase your product over your competitor's. Invest in your customer's and they will invest in you.