According to Spiegel, roughly 95 percent of online shoppers read reviews before purchasing a product. The number is a clear indication that an eCommerce store should look to incentivize its customers to submit feedback and generate interest for future shoppers. Besides, it is not just about impacting future customer decisions.
In-depth reviews are part of user-generated content that can do wonders for search engine optimization and raise brand awareness, which is an added bonus.
Customer feedback could serve an online business not just in the form of writing product reviews. No, more and more brands are discovering the value of asking people to provide feedback on their customer support.
Positive words about customer support work attract new shoppers because people like good experiences when they are shopping. For example, if someone expects to have a problem shopping online, knowing that there is trusty customer support to help provides some peace of mind.
On the other hand, a business can also collect negative feedback on its customer support and make adjustments to it by considering what the customers are saying.
However, the problem with generating feedback is that most customers do not want to bother spending their time writing a review. They need an incentive, a hook that will encourage them to dedicate a few minutes to submit feedback.
Ask for Reviews
The first suggestion is to simply ask customers to leave feedback. People are more likely to bother with providing feedback if someone asks them to do it.
For example, when someone receives an order confirmation in their email, you could include a link to a customer feedback page and kindly add a proposal to leave their thoughts.
Reaching out to customers on social media could work as well, though some might find such requests annoying, so keep that in mind
Prizes are perhaps the best incentive that will lead to customers leaving detailed feedback. The stuff you give can range from various knick-knacks, such as full wrap print custom notebooks, custom t-shirts, and custom hoodies, to more solid goods, such as electronics or perfume.
Besides, it does not have to be physical goods. You could also offer free shipping or a discount on the next purchase.
Finally, why not organize a raffle for everyone who leaves feedback? For raffles, you will need something bigger as a prize because there will be multiple participants and only one winner. After all, the person who wins should feel special.
Focus on Satisfied Customers
The approach of focusing on happy customers is worth consideration because they are more likely to help a business. But how does one figure out whether a customer had a positive or negative?
Well, asking them privately would make sense. Send an email or a message on social media and inquire how they find the overall customer experience on the website. If they are happy, you could then encourage them to submit feedback that you would publish on your website.
Turn Negativity Into Positivity
For customers who give a bad rating, ask them what you can do to improve. Not only will it give you information on how to change customer support for the better, but an honest concern might also be taken positively by an unhappy customer.
If they see you strive for improvement, they might change their stance and realize that your customer support is not as bad. You then suggest whether they would be willing to write a review and wait for their response.
Personalize the Requests
Personalization in digital marketing works and customer support feedback requests are not an exception. Now, the question is how to personalize the request and incentivize the customer to send their feedback.
Some companies go as far as creating personal videos and thanking them for the purchase. At the end of the video, they ask for the customer to share their thoughts on the overall satisfaction with customer support and provide a submission link.
If a company goes as far as sending a personalized video and asks to spend a few minutes writing a review about their customer support, it is quite difficult to say no to that.
Phone calls are another example of personalization. Customers who consented to provide their mobile phone number could receive a call that will ask them to share thoughts on the customer support experience. A person calling from the company could provide step-by-step instructions on how to submit feedback if the customer struggles to find the details themselves.
Tell customers why you want feedback
Customers who want to support your business and see it grow and improve might not be aware of how important such feedback actually is. On your proposal, tell them directly that you wish to hear their thoughts about customer support because it helps with improving the department. Also, mention that positive feedback on customer support builds trust between the brand and its customers and encourages new shoppers.
A business could create a review campaign and send mass emails or messages to customers on social media, asking them to take a bit of time by participating in the campaign.
Remember that a customer might be more apt to help others like themselves rather than give a business a 10 out of 10. It is quite valuable to push the idea that such reviews benefit other customers more than the brand itself.
Simplify the process
It is not the time that it takes to submit the feedback that is the biggest problem for some customers. No, certain brands fail to create a simple feedback submission system. In doing so, they discourage customers.
To start with, the submission itself should not take a lot of time, or rather clicks. Once a customer writes a review, they should be able to post it with a couple of clicks at most.
If the feedback location is not visible, it is another problem to counter. Whether it is an email, a message on social media, or a text message to their smartphone, providing a link that redirects to the feedback submission landing page is bound to make things easier.
Writing a detailed review might also put off some customers from actually doing it. Not everyone has the skills to translate their thoughts into writing, not to mention how some of your customers might not be native English speakers.
To accommodate their needs, why not create a template and make it easier to write the feedback?
When it comes to such templates, do not think about preparing the text yourself and leave some gaps for customers to fill. Doing so would lead to negative backlash as customers would not engage in submitting feedback that would have such an ingenuine look to it.
Instead, offer a few bullet points and highlight what you want from the review. You will still get to influence some part of the review, but the majority of it will depend on the customer.
Check out Prospero’s proposal templates here.
Create a survey
There is a method other than asking for feedback in writing. Change the approach by creating a survey that asks questions. A customer will need to fill the survey by rating their experience from bad to good. Clicking with a mouse and picking one of the available options is easier than writing a paragraph.
It is worth noting that a survey has certain drawbacks. The results from different customers will likely be the same, meaning that the business will have less content for publishing. A roundup of survey results from the last week or month in the form of an article will hardly cut it either.
Perhaps the best approach is to have both surveys and reviews written by customers from scratch. The two available options will offer flexibility. Those who want can partake in a survey, and those who wish to stick to a more traditional writing method can go with that.
Engage with existing feedback
Replies and feedback from the business itself are a great encouragement for customers to leave more reviews. Seeing a response is an indication that the brand actually cares about user feedback and pays attention to it.
You could hire someone new who will engage with customer feedback or promote a person from the customer support department and give them a new job or additional responsibilities.
Figure the best time to send requests
Some say that timing is the most important element when asking for customer feedback. The problem is that it varies from business to business and from customer to customer. In other words, what might work for some might not work for others.
Determining the best time to request reviews will take time and testing. However, there are a few rules of thumb to consider.
If the requests are made via emails, it is recommended to send a request email right after the purchase or include the request in the original purchase confirmation email. Follow-ups should come after a day or two.
Another thing to consider is how soon a customer will try your product and how soon they will notice the effects.
For instance, if you sell beauty products, wait for the customer to see the difference after they start using your products.