The Value of Client Testimonials
Reviews from real people can truly resonate with potential customers.
Wondering if it’s a good idea to put client or customer testimonials on your website? Not sure how to go about identifying patrons who have something positive to say about your business?
The answer to the first question about placing testimonials on your website is a loud and clear “YES!” Having customer reviews on your website is an excellent idea and one that can resonate with visitors who are unfamiliar with your offerings.Customer reviews on your website can make the difference in selling to visitors who don't know your business. Click To Tweet
How to Use Testimonials from Customers
If you’re like most businesses, you have competition in your market space – there will likely be other restaurants serving similar food, stores selling similar clothing, offices providing similar services. When a person is searching online for a particular item, place, or service, they want to know that previous customers have had a positive experience and would gladly offer their opinion to others.
A customer testimonial does not need to be a big, long story filled with details – in fact, it’s better for a customer testimonial to be short and to the point, communicating the key reasons why they’re recommending your business.
Take a look at these examples:
“We were looking for a restaurant to host my father’s 65th birthday party for 20 family members. At Joe’s Family Restaurant we were able to book a private space, have our own designated servers, and select menu choices that fit within Dad’s dietary restrictions. Everyone had a great time!” ~ Jane Smith
“I buy all of my suits for work at Winterson’s Department Store because the customer service is excellent. The sales staff really goes the extra mile to help me find the best fit and style – and they offer free alterations. For me, there’s no reason to shop anywhere else.” ~ Joe Latrobe, Esq.
“Spot-On Janitorial is our #1 choice for post-event clean-up and maintenance services. Their crews are very professional and pay attention to every detail – the next day you’d never know that there had been 400 people celebrating a wedding! Highly recommended.” ~ Sheyla Rodrigues, Wedding Planner
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How To Get Testimonials From Customers
Wondering how to go about getting testimonials from the people who patronize your business? Here are some examples of ways to get testimonials for use on your website:
- If you’re a restaurant, try enclosing a comment card with sufficient room to write a few sentences with every customer's bill.
- You can email a request for a review from those customers who are “regulars” that shop frequently at your store or who have contracted with your business for a specialized service or event. Send individual emails or email your whole mailing list.
- If you are connected with clients on LinkedIn, request that they write a recommendation of your business with LinkedIn's built-in recommendation feature.
- If your customers have written positive reviews of your business on social media or review sites, such as Yelp, Trip Advisor, Facebook, or on your business's Google Plus page, you can take the text from that public review to use on your website.
Typically, repeat customers would be happy, even flattered, to share their positive experiences - after all, that’s why they keep coming back! It also doesn’t hurt if you offer a small incentive - perhaps a certain dollar amount off their next purchase - as a way of saying “Thanks!” for taking the time to write down and share their experiences.
Some specialized review sites have widgets that can be embedded directly on your website to display customer reviews and ratings. Our client, Annaliese & Co., for example, includes both on-site testimonials that they control and also a widget from Wedding Wire which displays up to the minute reviews from their wedding hair and makeup clients. As a third option, they included a button that links to their reviews on The Knot.
When you use WordPress for your business’ website it’s quick and easy to update pages with fresh new testimonials or create entire blog posts highlighting customer success stories.
Like all other website content, it’s important that the testimonial quotes be routinely updated and refreshed so that your current menu items, merchandise, or services are highlighted. Who knows, you may even start a friendly competition between customers to see whose reviews will be published next on your website - that’s a guaranteed way to keep them coming back for more!