Online reviews are personal opinions or responses to a business, product, service, etc. that are published on the internet. These can be posted by customers who have bought goods from a store, or even just researched it online. It’s becoming increasingly important because more people are looking for them when buying products and services these days.
These consumer reviews matter because they help identify what is good about brands, stores, etc., but also what needs changing, so potential customers know how good the company is before making their decision. Reviews can be written after just one visit to a business or after many years of being a customer — both ways could provide equally valuable insights into important aspects of brand identity.
Here’s why you should take them seriously.
The impact of online reviews on businesses
Reviews matter because they inform consumers about a business’s performance and help them decide whether it is worth buying from. A good review can attract numerous customers streaming through the business’ virtual doors, whereas a negative one may have the opposite effect.
As more and more people use online reviews to help them buy products and services, businesses need to follow suit by presenting an image of a brand with positive reviews. Most e-commerce businesses have a virtual community platform on which people can join and review the business, product, etc.
This platform is like a virtual shop window where potential customers can see what others think of both the products and services offered by the company. In this way, reviews have become an important part of a business’s reputation management strategy.
How to write a review that matters
Writing a review can seem like a daunting task, but it is not as difficult as you might expect. Before writing your review — whether positive or negative — you need to decide what criteria matter the most to you.
Once these have been decided, you can write a review that matters and find out how the business, product, service, etc. is performing in these categories. A review is not a place for general comments; it should be a response to specific questions or concerns.
For example, if the primary criterion for you is value for money, then ask yourself these questions:
- Is the price right for me?
- Are there any additional costs I should be aware of?
- How does this compare to other similar products and services I’ve tried?
- What is my experience of the price concerning the quality, size, weight, etc.?
This process will help you write a review that delivers valuable information to potential customers and can make a real difference to the reputation of an online business. So before you buy something online, make sure to read the reviews and if you are so inclined, you could write one too!
Tips for leaving online reviews
Even though writing online reviews may seem easy enough, you have to keep in mind that your opinions will speak volumes about the product or service that you’re reviewing. So, it’s important to be professional and unbiased. This is how you can ensure that your review will matter to the next potential customer who comes along.
Here are some tips that you can implement when creating your review:
- Be honest and fair. Make sure that you write a truthful and objective review so people can trust what you say.
- If you have a negative experience, try being diplomatic and focusing on the positive aspects of the product or service. Though a positive review might not seem as impactful as a negative one, it’s better than writing about the bad aspects only.
- Disagree respectfully. If you disagree with someone’s opinion, you don’t need to attack them. Instead, state why you disagree with them and be prepared for healthy dialogue.
- Don’t write more than your opinion. If you want people to take your review seriously, focus on the facts and don’t exaggerate what you’re writing about.
- Always make sure to review the product and not the business or service. This way, you’ll help the company work on their products instead of pulling them down.
- Reviews are often written when people are upset, so try to keep your cool. Angry people might write negative reviews that can damage the business.
- You can be creative when writing your review; you don’t have to stick to the traditional model. For example, you may want to use photos or video clips.
The most important thing is that you create a good review that matters so the business can benefit from it. Through this, you’ll be doing your part as a consumer to help both the company and other potential customers.