Before the internet, word of mouth was the primary source of information for potential customers on businesses and services. Today, that has changed. Reviews from past customers are now an essential part of selling your business online.
With the help of social media sites such as Reliable Reviews, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, and others – it’s easy for users to share their experiences with products and businesses in a matter of seconds. These user-generated reviews are also known as product reviews or customer feedback, but no matter what you call them they are extremely important to your business’s growth.
If you want to succeed in today’s digital world, you need to understand why online review sites are so important and how they can help sell your business online.
Definition of Online Reviews
A review is a general overview of an experience someone has had. In business, people leave reviews about the products or services they use. A review might discuss the pros and cons of a product or service. It might also include information about the price, location, and availability of the product or service. Reviews are often found on websites.
When customers leave a review on a business website, they are providing feedback that could be helpful to other customers. Reviews might discuss features and functionality, any problems that occurred, and suggestions for improvement.
Alternatively, reviews can be left on product-specific websites such as Amazon, Best Buy, etc. If a customer buys a product, they can leave a review about the experience.
History of Online Reviews
Online reviews have been around since the early days of the web, but it wasn’t until the mid-2000’s that businesses and services started to see their true value of them. At this time, the average person had access to the internet and started to purchase goods and services online, which meant that reviews and feedback started to be left on various review sites. Before the internet, the primary source of information for potential customers on businesses and services was word of mouth. If a company had a great product or service, people would tell their friends, family, and colleagues who would then buy from them as well.
However, as the internet became more popular, it became easier for businesses to set up shops and sell their products or services. This caused a shift in how customers made purchasing decisions – customers started to rely on online reviews to see what other people thought about a product or service before they bought from the business.
Online Reviews Role in Today’s Market
If a customer has purchased from you in the past, there is a good chance they will do it again. Research has shown that customers who have had a positive experience with a business are more likely to make future purchases from that business than from a new or unknown business. This is because they feel comfortable buying from businesses they know and trust.
In the past, word of mouth was the primary way for customers to hear about products and services that they could trust. Today, online reviews play the same role. Several review sites allow customers to leave their feedback on products and services. Once they have left a review, it appears on their review site and is then visible to other potential customers.
Once a review is posted, it stays on the site indefinitely – unless the business owner contacts the review site and asks them to remove the review. This means that the review will be visible to new customers and potential customers for years to come.
5 Ways Product Reviews Help Grow Businesses
1. Boost Sales
One of the best ways to boost sales is by leveraging your product reviews. Whether you’re selling a product online or in-store, online reviews can help give your customers the confidence they need to buy. When visitors to your site read reviews left by other customers they feel more connected to your brand.
This connection can help the reader trust your products and boost conversion rates when they decide to make a purchase. Boosting sales doesn’t stop with online purchases, however.
In-store sales can also be impacted by online review sharing. Customers who already bought your products online and have positive product reviews can be encouraged to make a purchase in-store as well.
2. Increase Engagement
Engagement is a key indicator of success in the digital world. If your brand can increase engagement rates, you’ll be more successful. One way to do this is through the inclusion of product reviews. Product reviews encourage engagement from your customers.
They want to know what others think about your products and services, and they want to be a part of the discussion. When you have product reviews on your site, you’re encouraging customers to engage. By including product reviews on your site, you encourage interaction between your customers. By allowing them to share their thoughts and opinions, you’re helping your brand grow as a whole.
3. Increase Online Presence
Having a strong online presence is incredibly important in today’s digitally-connected world. With social media sites, review sites, blogs, and more. There are a variety of places where people can interact with your brand.
When you have reviews on your site, you’re increasing your online presence. Having product reviews on your site gives your visitors a chance to share their thoughts about your products. When a potential customer reads a review and then shares it on their social media site – you’re increasing your online presence even more.
When visitors see that others have already reviewed your products and services they feel more compelled to share their thoughts. As more and more people share their reviews, you’ll see your online presence grow even further.
4. Increase Brand Awareness
One of the best ways to raise brand awareness is by encouraging customers to leave reviews. When you allow your customers to leave reviews and share their thoughts, you’re helping bring your brand to a larger audience. When you encourage reviews, you invite your customers to share their thoughts with the world.
Their reviews have the potential to reach thousands of people and raise awareness about your brand as a whole. Having product reviews on your site benefits your brand as a whole.
Visitors to your site can read reviews from real customers who have used your products and services. They can see what others have to say about your company, and this can help boost brand awareness.
5. Decrease Customer Service Costs
Having positive reviews on your site can actually help you save money on customer service costs. When you have product reviews on your site, you can use them as a reference point for future customers. Customers want to be reassured that they’re purchasing from a reputable and trustworthy brand.
Having reviews on your site can help provide that reassurance. Potential customers can read reviews written by others who have used your products and services and then make a more informed decision. Having product reviews on your site not only helps grow your business but can also help you save money on customer service costs.
4 Strategies to Utilize Reviews to Sell Your Business Online
1. Ask For Reviews
Customers are more likely to leave reviews if they are prompted to do so. If you want to encourage your current customers to leave reviews, simply ask them to do so.
2. Increase Your Review Score
You can increase your review score by responding to negative reviews or comments on your review sites and thanking customers for their feedback. You can also leave reviews for other products and services in your niche.
3. Focus On Positive Reviews
While you do want your customers to leave reviews, make sure that you’re not focusing on negative reviews. It’s okay if you have a few negative reviews, but make sure that they’re not outweighing the positive. Negative reviews can be damaging to your brand.
When one negative review outweighs five positive reviews, you’re doing yourself a disservice. You want to make sure that positive reviews are the ones that stand out. When you see negative reviews on your site, don’t ignore them. Instead, make sure that you respond to each and every review.
4. Don’t Ignore Negative Reviews
When you see negative reviews on your site, you don’t want to ignore them. Instead, make sure that you’re responding to all reviews, positive or negative. When you respond to negative reviews, you have the chance to make things right for the customer.
You can also use their feedback to improve your business and make it better. Negative reviews are not something that you want to ignore. They can be used to your advantage and can be incredibly helpful to your business.
Reviews have become a vital part of selling products and services online. According to research, customers who read reviews before purchasing are more likely to buy from brands with positive reviews. If your business is not currently receiving reviews, it’s time to take action and start encouraging your customers to leave reviews.
If you want to take your review strategy even further, you can utilize review sites that allow you to showcase your products, track your progress, and receive helpful analytics.
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