Customer testimonials tactics for D2C eCommerce

Don’t underestimate the power of customer testimonials. Let the facts speak for themselves: 

  • Product pages with testimonials have 3.5x higher conversion rates 
  • These same pages capture 4.5x more revenue per visitor, on average 
  • 62% of consumers refuse to buy from brands that censor their reviews 
  • 9 out of 10 people trust customer testimonials over information from a business 

The case for using customer testimonials is strong. It’s time to start thinking about how you can optimize your content by using testimonials as effectively as possible. 

8 Tactics to Get the Most from Your Customer Testimonials 

Testimonials are part of your content marketing strategy. Use these tactics to get ahead of the curve and boost your conversions rate: 

1. Create Social Proof 

In 2020, 89% of people looked for and read online reviews before they bought a product. Social proof matters more than ever! 

Testimonials are the new word of mouth for many consumers, especially those in younger demographics. Overall, 79% of people surveyed in 2020 stated that they trust online reviews just as much as personal recommendations. When you just consider people aged 18-34, that jumps up to 91%. 

Don’t be afraid to use testimonials to convince others of the value of your products or services. There’s a good chance people are going to trust your previous customers more than you, even if you’re saying the same things. 

2. Request Testimonials 

Around 47% of consumers asked left at least 1 review in the month prior to being polled, according to research by Global Web Index in 2019. For people aged 25-34, that went up to 53%, and for those aged 55-64 it went down to 30%. 

What’s the best way to get more customer testimonials? Ask for them. 68% of people will leave a review if asked. 

Try these methods: 

  • Keep on the lookout for anyone who makes a positive comment about your product/service. When they do, reach out and ask if they’d be willing to give you a testimonial for your website. 
  • Send follow-up emails after a purchase has been made asking for feedback. 
  • Speak to customers at in-person events. 
  • Find existing reviews about your products and follow up with those customers to see if they will expound on their review. 
  • Make your requests short and personal. Do as much as you can to make it harder for them to say no! If possible, offer to write up a blurb that they can edit and sign off on. 
  • Offer some benefit in return, such as a link back to the person’s website, LinkedIn, or social media pages. 
  • Give example questions for them to answer, or send a testimonial template to help them get it right the first time. 

Although most testimonials are written, not all of them should be. Whenever you have the chance to interact with your customers directly, see if you can get audio or video testimonials instead. 

3. Reformat Testimonials 

Testimonials that are text-only are fine, but you can make them more impactful by focusing on the formatting a little more. 

Text paired with relevant images of the product/service or placed in video content showing the product/service in use make the words more meaningful. 

Make testimonials fit your content seamlessly. That means social media posts should be eye-popping, direct, and interesting. Testimonials on your home page can be placed on the hero image on top of something relevant. 

Wherever they are, they should look their best instead of just being a lump of text in a paragraph. 

4. Feature User Generated Content 

Out of nearly 1,600 surveyed from the US, UK, and Australia, 79% said that user-generated content impacted their buying decisions. This is compared to 13% for brand content and 8% for influencer content. 

If user-generated content (UGC) has the power to be so impactful, it’s a good idea to find ways to make it relevant. Customer testimonials are some of the easiest UGC to come by, so why not use them throughout your website, social media, landing pages, and other visible areas? 

The trick is to keep it relevant. Find relevant testimonials and trim them down to a digestible size that works well on your page. The ideal length for a testimonial is somewhere between 30-50 words.  

As short as they are, having these testimonials sprinkled around your content is likely to drive more conversions. 

5. Capture Tangible Experiences 

When you ask customers for testimonials, ask about specific things. Tangible experiences that name a specific feature, benefit, or use of your product or service are the best. 

Here’s an example of this using fake reviews. 

BAD: “Loved it! I will be ordering again.” – This is too generic and doesn’t tell why they loved it. 

BETTER: “I loved the ergonomic grip! I don’t get sore hands anymore, even after a whole day of work.” – This is better because it mentions something specific about the product and why the reviewer loved it. 

It’s great to ask for testimonials so you can increase your social proof, but make sure you’re asking questions that will lead to the most significant answers. You’re better off with a few well-written testimonials that name tangible benefits rather than a host of generic, non-specific reviews. 

6. Build Trustworthiness 

There’s a big problem today with fake reviews and testimonials. Avoid any suspicion on faking your good testimonials by optimizing their trust factor. 

You can do that in a few simple ways

  • Ask for reviews from specific, long-standing clients and state the length of the business relationship. 
  • Ask for permission to identify the writer, name, photo, and link to their website, LinkedIn, or social media page. Get this in writing whenever possible. 
  • Use testimonials with natural language and no exaggerated claims. 
  • Use testimonials that makes specific remarks. 
  • Don’t copy testimonials or reviews from third party sources. These are technically the intellectual property belonging to the other company. You have no control over their collection or use. 
  • Ask to include a company logo if no specific person is willing to be identified. 

If anyone feels your testimonials are fake, you’ll be doing more harm than good. Don’t make false claims, don’t write fake testimonials, and do everything you can to help your readers see the real person behind the words. 

7. Use Targeted Testimonials 

In a 2018 report, Nifty Marketing found that only 37% of top landing pages included customer testimonials. If testimonials are working for almost a third of the top performing landing pages, there must be something to it! 

Contents like landing pages, social media posts, and marketing emails are targeted to a specific group of people. By finding relevant customer testimonials, you can address the real concerns of your leads with the reassurances of your existing customers. 

At different stages of lead management, using relevant customer testimonials can give potential customers a push towards a buying decision by simply giving them the information they need right as they need it. 

8. Include CTAs 

When your visitors read a testimonial, the ideal reaction is “I want what they have.” 

Give your visitors a way to get the benefits your testimonials are boasting about with a custom call to action (CTA). A well-placed CTA can increase your conversion rate simply by giving people an immediate way to solve their problem. 

Putting CTAs after customer testimonials in your content is a great way to keep them moving in the right direction down the funnel. 

Final Thoughts 

Customer testimonials are another tool to enhance your content marketing. Learn how to use them strategically to build rapport with new leads and get your message across in way people trust.