Have you ever been offered store credit or coupons to leave a positive Yelp review? You're not alone.
Customer reviews have always been vital to an online reputation. As the internet and ecommerce grow even more, most consumers won't even consider spending their money on a brand they can't find reviews on.
According to Nielsen's Global Trust in Advertising report, 84 percent of consumers surveyed said they trust recommendations from friends and family over anything else when they research brands. Yet even with that being said, it's tough for businesses to know how to leverage all those faithful reviewers and their valuable user-generated content.
Sure, customers can use Yelp and Amazon reviews to learn more about products or services. However, there are many other review sites out there that might work just as well for your business and customers alike, across a bunch of different industries.
Let's examine some of the cool (but lesser known) customer review platforms on the market.
Word of mouth has been (and always will be) one of the best, and most trusted, forms of advertisement. Modern Comment embraces this fact by providing businesses with a social media marketing platform that allows them to promote the reviews they receive well beyond their current customer base.
The site starts by sending an email to customers containing a link to request feedback. Then, customers are provided with incentives to take mobile-friendly surveys specific to the industry; an example would be the opportunity to be entered to win a $100 prize Modern Comment sponsors.
The next step is where social media comes into play: the customer's chances of winning that $100 increase if he or she posts that recommendation on a social media platform like Facebook and Twitter. This opens the door to widespread exposure for the business involved, as a good review can be shared with each customer's unique community.
With this program, businesses can use their individual dashboard to examine, track and respond to all customer feedback, to ensure that the experience that they, the businesses, are providing is satisfying, and that they are leveraging social media sufficiently to spread the good word.
Trustpilot is a community-driven platform that spans 65 countries. It provides a global open-review community for businesses of all kinds. In addition to sending emails encouraging customers to write reviews, Trustpilot implements automated follow-ups to customers who have abandoned their shopping carts or have already made purchases.
Perhaps the best feature this platform offers businesses is its in-depth level of analytics to increase website traffic. By collecting customer feedback, Trustpilot uses search engines to publicize satisfaction ratings. This means that the data will factor into a brand's rankings on Google, Bing and Yahoo! to give more exposure and increase click-through rates.
Trustpilot is great for brands to showcase what makes them stand out. There are currently more than 13 million reviews posted on Trustpilot, with hundreds of thousands being posted each month.
Get Five Stars allows brands to get better insights on third-party opinions by helping those brands keep close tabs on their customers' experiences. Get Five Stars automates the entire customer feedback process, capturing things like testimonials, online reviews and their Net Promoter Scores
The automation involved starts with a customized email encouraging customer feedback after an interaction. Customers are asked to do things like answer questions on how likely they are to recommend the brand to a friend or to comment on their overall experience.
The customers that give high ratings are encouraged to review the business on one of the bigger sites such as Yelp or TripAdvisor, so the brand gets more exposure.
Get Five Stars also enables brands to embed a testimonial widget on their websites with manual control so only reviews above a certain score are shown. Further, brands are alerted when a customer rates below a specific threshold. This allows customer service to act immediately to resolve any issues or grievances.
This all-in-one platform is great for all businesses of any size. Get Five Stars currently is helping 15,000 businesses manage their online reputations.
Which? is a unique type of review platform. Whereas most online review sites leave the content creation in the hands of the everyday consumer, this independent organization tests and reviews products itself. It does not accept submissions from the public. Which? does, however, encourage businesses to communicate information about their new products so it can provide its expert opinion.
Which? further reviews all sorts of products ranging from kitchen tools to wearable technology. The rationale for this type of review platform is that it leaves the content creation in the hands of the expert customer (themselves). While most of the site's reviews are free to access, members can pay a monthly fee for extras like in-depth recommendations on what to buy or not buy.
Reviews can make or break a company. They can do wonders to boost brand awareness, credibility and even search rankings. Consumers love to hear what other like-minded individuals and experts have to say. And, for businesses, customer insights are among their most important pieces of information and are critical for future growth.
So, if you run a business, what are you doing to gather those insights?