11 Optimization Tips for Ecommerce Review Tools

Posted in CRO, Ecommerce Inspiration

Customer feedback plays a pivotal role in shaping the success of any business. One of the most powerful tools in an ecommerce owner’s arsenal is the use of review tools. These tools allow you to not only gather useful feedback about your product, but also help customers answer their own questions through reviews from others, while also showcasing how popular your products are with customers.

In this article, we will delve into the world of ecommerce review tools, exploring: 

  • their significance
  • the psychology behind reviews
  • essential features
  • optimization tips 
  • and their dual importance for both ecommerce owners and customers.

For ecommerce practitioners, review tools are more than just a means to accumulate testimonials – they are strategic assets that can significantly impact customer trust, brand credibility, and overall sales performance. Let’s dive into how you can better utilize your review platform. 

The Psychology Behind Reviews and Their Importance

Customer reviews aren’t just words on a page; they tap into the psychology of social proof and influence buyer behavior in profound ways. We all understand that potential customers often rely on the experiences of others to make purchase decisions. Positive reviews act as endorsements, building trust and alleviating concerns that potential buyers may have. Conversely, negative reviews provide valuable insights for improvement and showcase authenticity, as a flawless array of reviews can raise skepticism. This is something some stores tend to shy away from, but including negative reviews can improve trust in a brand. We don’t expect any product to be perfect, so seeing a handful of negative reviews lets customers know the reviews are authentic. 

The presence of customer reviews also lends credibility to your store. They indicate that real people have interacted with the business, fostering a sense of legitimacy. Additionally, the transparency of displaying both positive and negative feedback highlights the business’s openness and willingness to learn from mistakes.

Important Features of Review Tools

Not all review tools are created equal. When selecting a review tool, several essential features should be considered to ensure visitors get the most out of the reviews they read:

  1. Customization Options
    A versatile review tool allows customization of review display formats to match the website’s aesthetics and branding. It can throw visitors off if reviews look out of place on a page. A cohesive design can help instill trust.
Skims review filters
Skims.com review filters
  1. Sorting and Filtering
    Robust sorting options (by rating, date, relevance) and filtering by different criteria enable customers to find the reviews most pertinent to their needs. Increasingly, we are seeing reviews asking for information specific to the product they are reviewing, especially for clothing, such as the size purchased, their body measurements, willingness to recommend, etc. This allows potential customers to look for reviews that are more relevant to them.
  2. Multimedia Integration
    Beyond text, the inclusion of photos and videos submitted by customers enhances the authenticity of reviews and offers a more comprehensive view of the product. We often spend a lot of time and energy crafting the perfect product page photo, but visitors want to see more realistic images of how the product looks in real life. Sometimes these photos may even highlight something that visitors weren’t able to see in the product page gallery. These user-generated photos and videos are key to helping reduce fears and doubts for visitors.
  3. Verified Purchases
    A feature that highlights reviews from verified purchasers adds credibility, as potential customers can trust that the reviewers have actually bought the product.
  4. Review Moderation
    Tools that offer moderation capabilities empower you to manage and curate the reviews, ensuring inappropriate content is not displayed. This doesn’t mean deleting all negative reviews, but more-so removing reviews that aren’t relevant or may have been made in error (ex. A positive review that gives 1 star).
  5. Integration with Social Media
    Linking reviews to social media platforms extends the reach of positive feedback and encourages user-generated content sharing.
  6. Incentive Systems
    Some tools allow businesses to reward customers for leaving reviews, making it more likely they’ll actually leave one. Many stores often provide a discount on a future product or entry into a giveaway for a gift card to the store (be sure to look into rules and regulations around giveaways and sweepstakes).
  7. Review Request Automation
    Integration with email systems like Klaviyo to automatically send review requests post-purchase encourages a steady flow of feedback. Be sure that these are sent at the right moment. If the email is sent too early, visitors may not have had time to experience the product (or may not even have the product yet). If sent too late, they may wonder what the email is referring to. Be sure to also send follow up emails based on whether the visitor left a review or not. 

Conversion Optimization Tips for Ecommerce Review Tools

We’ve all been there, setting up a new review tool and updating the design to match the site, but not taking any further steps. Optimizing the use of review tools goes beyond implementation. Here are some strategies to make the most of these tools:

  1. Encourage Detailed Reviews
    Prompt customers to share specific details about their experience, product usage, and benefits gained. These reviews provide valuable insights for potential buyers. A five star rating is great feedback, but it isn’t as valuable as detailed feedback touching on different product features.
  2. Prompt Responses
    Engage with reviews by responding promptly, whether they are positive or negative. Addressing concerns demonstrates attentive customer service. Visitors will appreciate seeing that their potential future comments are attended to.
  3. Leverage Negative Feedback
    Negative reviews are opportunities for improvement. Mine these reviews in order to further improve your product and/or service. Publicly acknowledging and addressing them showcases a commitment to customer satisfaction.
Nomadgoods.com - User generated photos
Nomadgoods.com – User generated photos
  1. Rich Media Utilization
    Encourage customers to share photos and videos of their product experiences. This user-generated content acts as compelling testimonials. Be sure to promote these reviews, as they contain more information for visitors.
  2. Regular Updates
    Keep the review section dynamic by regularly updating featured reviews. This shows that the business is thriving and continuously delivering great experiences.
  3. SEO Optimization
    Implement relevant keywords in review titles and content for better search engine visibility.
  4. Aggregate Ratings
    Showcase aggregate ratings for categories or products. This provides quick insights to customers browsing the site.
  5. Filterable
    Allow visitors to be able to filter based on certain review features. For apparel stores, these can be things like the size someone ordered or the reviewer’s body type (height, weight, etc.). This helps visitors find the reviews that are relevant to them.
  6. Mine Reviews
    Don’t just collect reviews to showcase on your site. You should be actively mining reviews in order to understand what customers do and don’t like about your product, customer service, shipping, etc. Use this information to better tailor your marketing and copywriting, using the words your actual customers use when talking about you.
  7. Purchased Product Info
    Reviews should be as detailed as possible, and this means showcasing what the user actually bought. If someone leaves a review for a sneaker and says it was too tight, there should be information collected about what size shoe they purchased. Otherwise the review can be difficult to gain any insight from.
  8. Include Positive & Negative Reviews
    As mentioned above, including both positive and negative reviews adds a sense of trust and authenticity to the company. If you only have 5 star reviews, it can give visitors a feeling of distrust, as there are almost always going to be people who have a negative experience. Seeing a handful of negative reviews will help them understand why some people didn’t like the product, but most likely all of the positive reviews will outweigh the negative.

Why Ecommerce Review Tools Matter

The significance of review tools is two-fold: they are crucial for both business growth and customer satisfaction. It may feel like a review tool is just a way to gather ratings and show customer comments on a product page, but these tools are much more than that.

For Ecommerce Owners:

  1. Boost Conversion Rates
    Positive reviews influence purchasing decisions, directly impacting conversion rates and revenue.
Knix - Product reviews featuring details on sizing, comfort, quality
Knix – Product reviews featuring details on sizing, comfort, quality
  1. Data-Driven Insights
    Reviews offer insights into customer preferences, pain points, and product performance, guiding business decisions. Unless you do customer interviews and surveys, it’s difficult to gain insights. But reviews provide that for your team to learn and improve.
  2. Brand Credibility
    A collection of genuine reviews enhances the brand’s credibility and trustworthiness, setting it apart from competitors. Someone clicking an Instagram ad to a product page but seeing no reviews may worry that the company has no sales or isn’t trustworthy.
  3. Continuous Improvement
    Negative reviews provide constructive feedback, driving improvements in products, services, and customer interactions.
  4. Marketing Amplification
    Positive reviews can be repurposed in marketing campaigns, ads, and social media to amplify the brand’s reputation. Utilize review content across your store, as well as mining the reviews for useful copywriting content.

For Customers:

  1. Informed Decisions
    Reviews equip customers with firsthand information to make well-informed purchase decisions. They can see what actual customers think of the product, a more reliable source of information than from the company selling the item.
  2. Authenticity
    Reading about real experiences from fellow customers fosters a sense of authenticity and transparency.
  3. Reduced Risk
    Positive reviews mitigate the perceived risk of buying a product online, especially for first-time customers. If you’re not a household brand, customers are going to rely on reviews to reduce their fears and doubts about purchasing.
  4. Community and Engagement
    Review sections often create a sense of community where customers interact, share experiences, and offer advice. We increasingly see review tools offering question and answer sections where visitors can pose questions that are either answered by the company or by other customers.

Ecommerce review tools aren’t just accessories for online stores; they are indispensable instruments that can make or break a business. As someone in the ecommerce industry, you understand that these tools are not just about accumulating feedback; they’re about harnessing the psychology behind reviews, integrating essential features, optimizing their usage, and leveraging them strategically across your business. By recognizing the dual importance of review tools for both the business and customers, you can continue to build trust, enhance satisfaction, and drive growth in the competitive ecommerce landscape. Go check out your review tool and see where you can optimize today!


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