When it comes to selling online, trust is your most valuable currency. It’s what convinces consumers to choose your product over another. It’s also an indicator of your brand’s performance.
It’s not news that online reviews can play a significant role in your online marketing strategy, but can they also influence the growth of your business? In other words, can negative comments or the lack of reviews make or break a sale?
Well, as it turns out, reviews are vital to establishing trust.
Here’s the thing: consumers that shop online can’t touch, smell or taste your products. That’s why you need to provide them with a similar in-store experience and show them why you are worth their attention. As such, everything from how easy it is to browse your website to the product description and customer reviews can contribute to establishing trust in your brand. Without it, consumers will stop over 70 percent of online purchases, shows one Taylor Nelson Sofres study.
Do you need more proof that reviews can impact your company’s bottom line? Here are 10 staggering statistics that you need to keep in mind if you want to sell smarter and better in 2018.
- Buyers Trust Online Reviews Just as Much as Recommendations from Friends
According to one study, 88 percent of consumers read online reviews to determine the quality of a product or service and trust them just as much as recommendations from their friends and family. While consumers value reviews, they value authenticity even more. In other words, if the reviews seem fake, then they can backfire and create more damage than good.
2 Customer Reviews Can Increase Sales
According to one study cited by conversionxl.com, customer reviews can generate an 18 percent increase in sales. When prospects see that others have tried your products and were pleased with what it delivered, then their conviction that they are making the right decision increases.
3 Positive Reviews Can Have a Significant Impact on Prospects’ Purchasing Decisions
A BrightLocal study found that 73 percent of consumers will be more likely to trust a business if it has positive reviews. Don’t get the wrong idea, though, although positive reviews can certainly have an impact on your bottom line; it doesn’t necessarily mean that negative comments will lead to the doom of your sales. We’ll get to that in a second.
4 A Higher Review Volume Can Lead to an Increase in Sales
According to one interesting case study, a thorough online reputation management strategy that includes an on-site review system, as well as third-party platforms, can lead to a 50 percent increase in sales. The results of this study make it abundantly clear that asking for reviews, even if it feels like a nuisance, is worth your while.
5 Consumers Become Suspicious If a Page Features Only Positive Reviews
It may sound counterintuitive, but negative reviews can actually benefit your business. In fact, studies show that 95 percent of consumers will suspect that the reviews are either fake or censored if a page features only positive comments.
Think twice before deleting reviews that you perceive as damaging. While you may think that you’re maintaining your brand’s image, you may, in fact, sabotage your sales. A healthy share of both negative and positive comments can boost conversion by a staggering 68 percent.
6 Negative Reviews Will Impact Purchasing Decisions
According to one survey, 86 percent of consumers admitted that they avoid purchasing from companies that feature too many negative reviews. And, it makes perfect sense. Negative comments can diminish your reliability and poorly reflect on your product or service’s quality, especially if they’re unresolved.
A negative review doesn’t necessarily mean the end of your business, but how you handle it can make a world of difference. Instead of ignoring or deleting the complaint, address it head on and try to find out what caused the dissatisfaction.
7 Unhappy Buyers That Post a Complaint Want an Answer
People don’t post negative comments just to bash your business. Seventy-percent of them do so hoping they will receive a solution or, at least, an answer from a company’s representative. However, just 38 percent of complaints receive a response.
What most companies don’t realize is that a negative comment can be an excellent opportunity to showcase your stellar customer service and show prospects how much you value their business.
8 Bad Customer Service Experiences Can Affect Sales
Not everyone will like your products – that is a fact. As hard as you are trying to create high-quality products or services, some people are just going to dislike them and share their opinions with the world. How you handle these customers can say a lot about your business.
Here’s why: bad customer services experiences can drop sales by 59 percent. Don’t assume that if a prospect was unhappy with your product, then he is forever lost. Stellar customer service has the power to turn dissatisfied customers into loyal buyers.
9 Customers Will Refer Your Business After a Positive Experience
You may have noticed a trend while reading these statistics – it’s not about what people say about your brand but about how you manage their comments. As such, delivering positive customer experiences to your prospects can increase your sales. That’s because studies show that 83 percent of them are willing to refer your business to their friends and family – if you ask them to do so.
10 Nine Out of 10 People Will Opt for a Local Business That Has at Least a 4-Star Rating
Something as little as a one-star bump on review platforms can lead to a revenue increase, studies show. In other words, the reviews your business gets on these sites can have a major impact on your sales and are worth your attention.
Monitoring and responding to online reviews may seem like a hassle. But, hopefully, these stats have made it clear that this effort is worth it and can help you scale your business. Put aside at least one hour each day to managing reviews and addressing complaints. Sooner rather than later you will notice a significant change in your revenue.