Product reviews are a very common feature for eCommerce sites. Surprisingly, I encounter a lot of Magento shops that are not fully utilizing or managing the feature. This article seeks to highlight the benefits of using product reviews.
The Benefits of Reviews
They provide more information for customers. Fully 63% of customers are more likely to make a purchase from a site which has user reviews (source).
They provide more information to the business selling the products. If they are good products, customers will let the business know via reviews. If they are bad products, the business can stop selling them or find a better alternative if quality is low.
The can benefit SEO. Reviews can benefit ranking on search engines by offering fresh content. Consumers regularly search for terms like that include the product name + review.
Exercise control over your reviews. Within Magento, you have the ability to approve and deny publishing a review. Perhaps you think the review would not be helpful to other customers, you don't need to approve it. You should note that bad reviews can be helpful too. Research has shown that including some bad reviews can actually improve conversions by 67% (source). In fact, it has been shown that having products with 4.8 star review is more effective than having products with exactly 5 star review (source).
You have the ability edit or append a review. It is not recommended that you edit a negative review into a positive review, but you can edit incorrect spelling or grammar. In fact, it can be helpful to customers to have negative reviews on products so that they can anticipate potential problems should they decide to purchase it. Remember, products that only have 5 star, glowing reviews, will likely be viewed suspiciously by customers.
Magento allows you to restrict reviews to only Registered users, should you choose. Or you can allow anyone to submit a review.
- 50 or more reviews per product can mean a 4.6% increase in conversion rate.
- Consumer reviews are considered significantly more trustworthy than product descriptions (nearly 12 times more likely).
- Reviews produce an average 18% uplift in sales.
- 63% of customers are more likely to make a purchase from a site which has user reviews.
Sources: Econsultancy and Smart Insights
The Downside of Magento Reviews
About the only drawback to reviews is the time required for someone to manage them. Typically, a business my assign that task to a member of the marketing or someone on the customer service team. Depending on the volume of reviews being submitted, this could be something done once every other week for a few hours, or daily if needed. The person managing the reviews should understand your companies policies on approving reviews and have a good working knowledge of your product line.
It should also be noted that inbuilt Magento reviews do lack some credibility, due to the ease with which they can be edited. There are a number of Review extensions that reduce and eliminate some the credibility concerns - most notably, Yopto's review module. Other review modules from other respectable Magento Module makers like Amasty, aheadWorks, Reevoo, Trustpilot, and FEEFO are worth consideration.
If you are not currently using reviews, you are potentially missing out. Share you thoughts below.