The Customer is Always Right: Why Your Website Should Include Reviews

If the customers are always right, why not invite them to share their experience with your business or website? You can use online reviews to help your customers make purchasing decisions — and it's a great way to grow both traffic and sales.

Nearly nine in ten consumers read online reviews and 88 percent say they trust those reviews as much as personal recommendations, according to BrightLocal.

In the same way consumers check with their friends on social media before deciding on a brand or product, they'll skim reviews on product pages before making a purchase, writes digital marketing pro Adam Fridman, in Inc. Magazine.

“People love other people's opinions," he says. “Even if the other people are strangers they've never met, they will take their advice over anything they read from a company's website."

While online shopping offers incredible convenience to consumers, the hands-off approach to shopping also creates uncertainty about the quality of the products and services purchased, points out tech blogger Yoav Vilner.

“This is where customer reviews play a vital role in eCommerce, providing online shoppers with a sense of security that encourages them to make a purchase," he writes on Business.com.

Here are some best practices for adding customer reviews to your Weebly store or site.

Be Authentic

A key factor in winning customers' trust is for them to believe that your reviews are authentic. No one wants a bad review. But any critiques you receive can help you improve your product – and demonstrate to customers that you're truly interested in listening to their feedback.

The Culture Sock store, which sells trios of socks with different pictures, uses customer reviews to put a positive spin on a common misconception with its products:

“Realized after I received them that there were 3 socks, not 3 pairs. But I love them!!!!" wrote customer Berry.

Being authentic enables the store to both educate consumers about the product, and make connections with potential buyers.

Make It Easy

Don't make customers jump through too many hoops in order to leave a review, Fridman says. Instead, stick to the basics. A name, email address and rating system are really all you need to get started, he says. “Otherwise, you'll lose their interest before they finish reviewing the item."

Realtor Michaela To makes it both easy and fun for her clients to review her services by adding humor to her "Reviews" page:

“Want to become semi-Internet famous by having your own space on my website dedicated to you? Write your review HERE."

The link takes readers directly to her Yelp site where they can see recommended reviews – and perhaps add one of their own.

Drag and Drop

It's easy for you to include customer reviews with great apps from the App Center that you can simply drag onto your website's product pages.

  • Broadly's free Reviews app will display your store's three most recent Yelp Recommended Reviews directly on your Weebly site. The mobile-friendly app can be placed anywhere.
  • The Social Reviews app ($6.99) from Kudobuzz collects social reviews from a wide range of social media platforms such as Facebook, Yelp, Twitter, G+ and Instagram to provide social proof to potential customers.
  • 5 Star Rating System by POWr Plugins ($0 - $3.99/month) enables you to collect and display ratings using a 5-star scale. You can use custom colors, fonts, and backgrounds to show off text in any language. Premium features also let you approve new comments before posting and invite customers to reply to favorite posts.

Do It Yourself

If you don't want to use an app, you can easily add your own customer reviews into product pages by dragging text and image elements together into the long description section. You can offer product suggestions in this area as well.

One benefit to creating your own customer reviews section is the ability to get creative, like Paiwen, which sells stand up paddle boards for women. The store features a page with reviews from customers who purchased a Stand Up Paddleboard Package -- a great way to call attention to a premium product. Paiwen also includes photos of happy customers with each review.

​Customer reviews are an easy and inexpensive way to build trust, increase sales, and spread the word about the amazing products on your store or site. So don't hesitate to include the voices of the people who know your products best – your loyal customers.​

Ready to get started? Let's go.