Thursday, 16 August 2012

The unappreciated strength of buyer promotion

A number of articles I have posted over the last few weeks have stressed the importance of creating a positive customer experience, as it is these customers who will determine future success of your ecommerce store.

However, once you have created these great customer experiences that will result in others talking about your store, you simply do not want to just sit back doing nothing, waiting for customers to come to your store. You can look to be proactive and make use of these satisfied customers by placing testimonials from those customers on to your store for future visitors to read. If you are unsure that a tesitmonial is, it's basically a short sentence or paragraph produced by a customer that states how they found their experience with the store. The great thing about a testimonial is that it is positive advertising but from a third party, unbiased source. This is important for two significant reasons:

  • Trustworthy - Rather than you posting content about how great your store's service is, a testimonial doesn't sound like it is from someone trying to sell them something. For this reason, their opinion will be much more trustworthy in the eyes of visiting customers, as they have nothing to gain by providing the comment. 
  • Great Tiebreakers - If you have a customer that is on the fence, it could be the smallest thing that makes their mind up as whether to purchase from your store or not. A good testimonial could be just the thing to push a customer off the fence and make them purchase a product.

While all positive testimonials will improve the standing of your store from the stance of a customer, some testimonials will be more effective than others. For this reason you need to take your time when selecting your testimonials, ensuring that you select ones that will not only put your online store in a positive light, but also highlight the many benefits a customer can gain by purchasing for your store. Whatever you do, don't edit a testimonial so that it says what you would like. If a testimonial isn't 100% truthful and honest, it shouldn't go up on your site. 

So you've selected the testimonials which you think will best showcase your store to visiting customers, the next question you should ask yourself is where do you place them? When a customer visits your store, most of the time they will do so by visiting your home page. For this reason, you want customers to see these positive endorsements, as it encourages them to delve further into your site, rather than bouncing straight back off the page. Still, you don't want to just have testimonials solely on your home page. Place them throughout your site, allowing customers to read different options as they navigate through your various pages.

What you should also remember is that if you run an eBay store you already have a ready made source of customer feedback in the form of a customer's DSR review. If you find that your seller rating feedback is rather low, you can look to combat this negative feedback by placing more positive testimonials throughout your store. What this will do is alter the balance of positive and negative views, allowing you to continually portray your store in a positive light no matter other feedback may suggest. However, this is only a quick fix solution. If you do have a number of negative customer comments, you need to review your own store and service to determine why you are getting these negative views.

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