How to nail asking your customers for reviews

It can be daunting to ask your customers to leave a review, but the benefits far outweigh an awkward moment. Asking for reviews from customers is one of the most powerful customer acquisition and retention strategies you can have up your sleeve. That’s because online reviews can do wonders for your company.

They help build your online reputation, strengthen your brand credibility, and provide the kind of social proof  needed to influence consumer behaviour. Reviews are also one of the most significant factors affecting a company’s local SEO performance.

When you are already delivering exceptional experiences and products that customers love, they won’t hesitate to vouch for you. All you have to do is ask.

We’ll share some examples and techniques to help you achieve great results and response rates.

Ask for reviews via email

One of the most effective ways to generate new reviews is via email campaigns. Some campaigns may be in the form of a customer survey or a simpler email message containing a link to a page where the recipient can write a review.

If you’re just getting started with asking for reviews, email should be at the top of your list. Close to 70% of reviews come from post-transactional review request emails.

Email requests for reviews also enable you to evaluate customer loyalty and satisfaction levels and identify customers who are likely to recommend your business to others versus those who aren’t.

Get personal

You can design the most striking email in the world, but you won’t achieve high open and response rates if the message feels impersonal. Put thought into your emails and write them in a way that acknowledges each recipient.

Keep it short

If your review request email or survey takes too long to complete or even read, you risk respondents losing interest. Keep your message short and simple. If you would like them to review your business on a specific website, say so and provide clear instructions on how to do it.

Navigating negative responses

If you receive negative feedback after asking for reviews from customers, act quickly and respond to let them know you are working on the issues they pointed out. We share more helpful tips in our Tips and tricks to respond to negative online reviews blog article.

Test, measure, and adjust

You shouldn’t launch a review request campaign then leave it running untouched for the next several months. Test, measure, and adjust to achieve the best response rates and collect valuable feedback. Try a different subject line to generate interest or trial sending the email at a different time of day.

Email examples to get you started

Not sure what to write in your review request messages? Here are some subject line and message ideas to get your creative juices flowing.

Subject line examples:

  • “How did we do?”
  • “We’d love to hear your feedback!”
  • “Got a minute to share your experience with (Company Name)?”
  • “Your opinion matters, and we’d love to hear it!”

Message example:

“Hi (First Name of Customer)!

Thank you again for choosing (Business Name). We love providing top-notch service to customers like you. Please leave us a review on our profile on (review site, with a direct URL to review website profile). It will only take a minute. Your valuable feedback will help us improve and make a massive difference to our company. Thank you!”

Request reviews via SMS

If you send customers a text message survey or a review request via SMS, there’s a better chance they’ll click on that link than an email, with 56% of all online reviews posted from mobile devices. Responses from mobile devices can be more immediate. Additional research shows that 90% of SMS messages are read within 3 minutes.

Crafting your review request for SMS requires careful thought because of the character limitations. Here are a few review or feedback SMS templates to help you achieve high response rates.

“Hi (First Name of Customer), thank you for doing business with us. Do you have 1 minute to leave a review on (review site) about your experience with us? Just go here: (review website profile link). Thanks for your help!”

Dedicated landing pages for collecting reviews

More and more companies are creating dedicated landing pages to generate new reviews, improve customer experience, and collect valuable feedback.

It’s a great way to encourage customers to be more vocal about their experiences. These landing pages can be facilitated by using review generation / local SEO software, survey forms, and embedded reviews widget on your company website — or you can also build one on your own.

Once you have set it up, identify key touchpoints to most effectively drive customers to the page. You can even share the link to the page across your social media profiles or give customers a friendly reminder post-transaction.

Ask for reviews at the point of sale

A more immediate, personal, and direct way to ask for reviews from customers is to make the request at the point of sale.

Picture this scenario: during checkout or towards the end of a customer’s visit, you ask a customer to scan a QR code that takes them directly to a short form to complete. Any feedback they share via the form can then be set up to be published as an online review.

Asking for reviews at the point of sale is a great way to capture reviews and customer insights just moments after the sales experience. It’s also a valuable opportunity for your business to strengthen customer relationships. Not to mention, it’s a helpful review request tactic in situations where you don’t yet have your customer’s contact information.

This strategy minimises privacy and security concerns while also preventing reviews from being generated using the same IP address as your business location. It also lets customers act on the request at their convenience, using their own devices.

Campaign automation makes things easy

An efficient way to ask customers for reviews is by using review request or review generation tools. The Smart Reviews dashboard, for example, allows you to generate new reviews via email campaigns, SMS, on-site QR codes, and customisable landing pages.

Companies who automate their review requests can often double or triple their review volume – minus the time and resources spent on manually chasing reviews.

When to ask for reviews

If you’re trying to get more reviews, you’ll want to consider the time of day that you ask for reviews from customers.

The two most effective times to ask for reviews are between 2-3 pm and 6-7 pm. These are the times consumers are most likely to rate a business on Google, which makes sense. People often visit businesses during their lunch break or after work, so these hours are the exact times consumers reflect on their experiences.

It’s always best to test, measure, and adjust. But if you stick to sending your review requests out in the afternoon or time them, so they occur shortly after a transaction, you’ll be off to a good start.

I’ve got some killer reviews. Now what?

Say thank you. Show customers that you appreciate and value their feedback. And remember always to say thank you when you respond to reviews (even the bad ones).

Spread the word. Amplify their feedback. Go social. Share your customer’s experiences across your social media profiles. Upload a screenshot of the review as part of your business’ Instagram stories or photostream.

Many people research information about businesses, products, and services using social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok.

Make customers happy

At the end of the day, the best way to get reviews is to deliver excellent customer experiences consistently. Focus on providing what they want and need. The 5-star reviews and testimonials may come without the need for you to ask. Just remember that it doesn’t hurt to try.

Want to learn more about Smart Reviews and how we can take care of the grunt work for you by automating the reviews process from start to finish?

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