How to Leverage Social Media Reviews for Ecommerce Success

If you don’t make a point to win customer reviews on social media, you’re shooting yourself in the foot.

Why? Because reviews help build brand reputation, generate credibility and provide social proof that helps influence consumer behavior.

Need some numbers?

Good news: you're a quick scroll away from learning how to win social media reviews for your ecommerce business.

Focus on the Right Social Media Channels

Consider this: there are 2.7 billion social media users in the world. That makes social media platforms a goldmine for ecommerce business owners.

But which social media channels to use for maximum ROI?

Facebook and Google reviews perform best for B2B and B2C businesses.

True, you can pinpoint which social media channels bring in the most traffic via Google Analytics (here’s how to do it). But chances are, you already know — or will figure out via Google Analytics — that Facebook and Google reviews perform best for B2B and B2C businesses.

Read on for some quick tips on how to set up Facebook and (if you also have a brick-and-mortar shop) Google reviews to solicit customer feedback.

Facebook

Enable customer reviews on your ecommerce store's Facebook page. This will help you gather social media reviews on autopilot (here’s how).

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Google

Verify your business via Google’s My Business. If you have a traditional (physical) store, Google reviews will help you reach a wider audience and allow for a constant stream of customer reviews (here’s how.)

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Know when to ask for reviews on social media

Approaching customers at the wrong time is like tossing your reviews atop a blazing bonfire. You need to be smart about timing.

First, approach customers when they are the happiest: within two to three weeks of purchase. That’s usually when they already test-drove and enjoyed your product.

Approach customers when they are the happiest: within two to three weeks of purchase.

Second, according to ReviewTrackers, it’s best to ask for a review between 2-3 PM and 6-7 PM.

When shouldn't you ask for a review on social media? Based on the ReviewTrackers data — an analysis of over 150,000 reviews — skip the dead hours of 2-3 AM.

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As with any research, it's important to only take the above findings as a starting point. Run your own experiments to see what works best for your ecommerce business.

Solicit Social Media Reviews via Email

So far, so good: you know which platforms to target and when to approach customers. Now you need to get your first social media review to start driving sales to your site.

One of the best ways to do this is through email campaigns. Just send customers a message with a link to either your Facebook page or Google business listing and ask for a review.

Need proof that it's worth the effort?

A whopping 68 percent of consumers will write a review if you ask them.

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Here’s a bulletproof formula for asking for a review via email:

  • Personalization is key. No one likes generic messages, so take the time to personalize emails for each customer. For example, you might mention the product(s) purchased and put the customer's name in the body and/or subject line of the email.
  • Don’t beat around the bush. Keep the email snappy and go straight to the point. Most people have neither the time nor the attention span to read long emails.
  • Drop a call-to-action. Including a direct link with action-oriented language ("Click here to let us know!") will prompt customers to follow through and max out your success rate.

Need some real-life inspiration? Check out this Coschedule guide to see 20+ email examples from top brands.

Put a call-to-action on your homepage

Wouldn't it be nice if you could get social media reviews on autopilot? Fortunately, there's no need to dream about it.

If you plant a CTA on your homepage, customers will leave reviews without you lifting a finger. However, as Thomas Gerencer, journalist and career expert at Zety, puts it:

You need a stellar CTA. Otherwise, it’ll have the same impact as a fly on a windshield

We recommend checking out The Daily Egg's guide on creating the perfect CTA button.

Handle negative social media reviews like a pro

It's easy to think that negative reviews are automatically bad for your ecommerce business. But here’s the thing — when there are no bad reviews, a jaw-dropping 95 percent of customers will think that something is fishy.

That might dent your brand credibility and push your revenue off a cliff. So instead of deleting negative feedback, make friends with it.

Instead of deleting negative feedback, make friends with it.

Here’s how:

  • Always respond to negative social media reviews. You’ll win the trust of the 78% of customers who think businesses care about their customers when they acknowledge negative feedback.
  • Apologize for the customer’s bad experience. You can start by saying something along the lines of, "Hey [name], I'm really sorry to hear that you had a bad experience with [issue]."
  • Take the conversation offline. Don’t air the dirty laundry, and try to keep things private between you and the customer. Make it clear that you want to learn more and can better help them when communicating directly. For example: "Could you please contact me at [max@ecompany.com] so I can better understand your issue? I’ll be happy to invest every ounce of my energy to solve it for you as soon as possible."
  • Analyze the problem and implement changes. It'll make the customer experience better and prove that you take actionable steps to solve your customers' issues.

So there you have it: five juicy tips for winning customer reviews on social media.

What's your experience with getting customers to leave reviews? What strategies work best for you? Let us know in the comments below!