How To Get Customers To Review Your Business Online

Published on 06/02/2020 by Caroline Rousseau and Anna Hammond

No business feels indifferent toward customer reviews—especially, SMEs. Positive or negative, it’s hard not to have an emotional reaction.

From the consumer’s point of view, it is a way of ensuring that they make the right choice when making a purchase. But for SMEs, it is a way to take the pulse of its business, measure its popularity and attract new customers. It is then a question of setting up a strategy to track down and analyse customer opinions distributed on the web. 

In this article, we explain how to get customers to review your business and reveal what Aussie shoppers expect to learn from the information shared about your business.

how to get customers to review your business

How many customer reviews should small businesses aim for?

There are two obvious concepts that will quickly lead to unprompted online reviews: offering an extremely good service, software or product, or an extremely bad one. Between these two extremes, businesses can take a certain level of control. 

It can be a daunting task trying to obtain your first customer review, particularly if some of your competitors have hundreds. However, small businesses needn’t feel such pressure. Having just five reviews on a product review site is enough to catch the eye of potential customers. The ideal number is between five and twenty reviews, according to our survey.

The importance of customer reviews on the Internet

Last September, we surveyed Australian buyers to look into the importance of online reviews to Australian customers. The survey revealed that customer reviews have a considerable influence on buying behaviour.

Here are some key findings:

  • 98% of Australian’s check online reviews before making a purchase.
  • 84% have left a review at least once in their life.
  • More than half of Australians who leave a review did so because they were asked. 

More results can be found in the infographic below:

Australian reviewing behaviour

There are a few types of platforms that enable you to collect software product reviews, including:

  • Google My Business
  • Product review sites
  • Social media platforms.

How to get customers to review your business

Today, we offer a list of ten proven tips that will allow you to collect your first customer review. Alternatively, you can use them to obtain more!

1. Set up an automated email campaign

Ask your customers to share their opinion right after their purchase or your service. A simple, email automation that invites the recipient to answer a few questions (or to give a star-rating) is sufficient. 

2. Send a customer satisfaction questionnaire

If you already have tools that allow you to understand the satisfaction rate of your customers, why not ask happy customers to share their experiences? Australian shoppers want to make the buying decisions of other customers easier. 

3. Publish on social media

If you have a presence on social networks, it is worth posting a message for your followers. If they have time to scroll, they will have five minutes to evaluate you!

4. Offer an incentive

Offer a reward to the first few customers who leave an online review, be it the initial ten or hundred. Test several types of rewards (no need to spend a lot) and see which works best. 

Depending on your field of activity, this can be a voucher or reduction, or free access to your product. 

5. Post a call-to-action on your site

Dynamic content allows you to target existing customers to leave a review through a simple message at the bottom of your homepage or product listing.

Only your customers see this message, rather than all site visitors. So you will collect the opinion of people who already know your product. Look for a marketing automation software that includes dynamic marketing as part of its platform.

6. Leverage Live Chat 

If your company has a chatbox application integrated into its website, you can ask customers for a review. Program the pop-up chatbot at the right time: we are naturally more willing to make a gesture in a serene moment. Instagram, for example, occasionally asks its users to rate the app after posting an image on its network. 

7. Collect reviews during an event

Does your business participate in events? Take the opportunity to invite visitors who use your platform to assess your business on a tablet or laptop on your stand. You can then point them to your landing page on product review sites or social media pages.

8. Print out leaflets

If your business involves a physical location (a cafe or coworking space, for example, or simply the reception desk), a small card printed with the appropriate message will subtly attract the attention of customers.

9. Ask your account managers for support

Your sales team and account managers can ask customers directly to share their opinions. Your team understand the history of customers, and can politely ask for a review. 

Try asking for the review at the end of a successful client call. Prepare the links to your relevant reviews sites ahead of time, so you can share immediately afterwards. As they say, strike while the iron is hot!

10. Make the process as simple as possible

Keep this in mind: the simpler the procedure, the easier it will be to get your customers to leave a review. Include a link to your reviews landing page across all your customer touchpoints.

Remember:

Not all reviews have to be positive. Negative reviews can actually benefit a business in several ways. Perfection does not exist, and having only 5-star reviews may seem unauthentic. Plus, what is negative for one buyer is not necessarily negative for another. 

In the event of a negative review, here’s how our survey respondents said they’d prefer businesses to react:

How to respond to a negative review

You now know how to get customers to review your business, so why not give them a friendly nudge. Check out Capterra’s directory of the top review management software platforms today.

This article may refer to products, programs or services that are not available in your country, or that may be restricted under the laws or regulations of your country. We suggest that you consult the software provider directly for information regarding product availability and compliance with local laws.