One of the most difficult things for a business is encouraging their customers to leave a review, especially if the person has had less than a perfect experience.
Requesting an online review can work, but this method can be met with a sour glance and a person less inclined to leave a review.
The best way to try and encourage customers to write reviews is to offer an incentive. People love to be rewarded for their time and some will feel they deserve something for spending a few minutes of their day reviewing a business.
So, incentives can work by giving the reviewer something in return for what the company will hope is an honest and genuine review of the services they received.
Such incentives include, but are not restricted to, entering the reviewer into a prize draw to win cash or another prize, or special loyalty bonuses. These bonuses could be money off or free bets in the case of an online sports betting website.
To encourage customers to leave a review, without nagging at them or making them feel pressured, a company must include links or website addresses to review sites in advertising or promotional material.
A sports betting website could include links or hyperlinks to review sites on their homepage or throughout their site. They could send out e-mails to registered users requesting a review in exchange for a free bet, price boost, or entry into a draw to win a cash prize. Or, they could have a promotional banner on the site advertising an incentive for anyone who writes an honest and open review.
Another method is to have a review section on the website itself, or a pop-up asking for customers to leave a quick review once their session has ended. If people are visiting the site anyway, they may be more inclined to spend a few moments writing a brief review whilst they are there.
Unfortunately, it’s impossible to force someone to write a review although offering incentives, along with providing a fantastic service and a great customer experience can go a long way to encouraging customers to spare a few minutes of their time.
Responding to reviews in a professional and calm manner can also pay dividends. This isn’t recommending just responding to positive reviews or getting into a personal slanging match with a negative reviewer. It’s a suggestion that the company should respond to each and everyone of their reviews, in the same tone and within a set time period.
Saying thank you to a positive reviewer shows appreciation and other customers can see that, which will make them more inclined to write a review themselves. Also, if a customer posts a negative review, a company representative should be responding to ask what they could do differently next time or for customer suggestions on how to improve the service they provide.
This offers a personal touch and allows potential customers to see that the company has time for the people who pay for their services. Listening to suggestions also shows a willingness to improve and offer a better customer experience.
One other way of enticing or encouraging customers to write a review is to interact with them over social media. Companies should post or repost reviews, both good and not so good, and then post their response to it. Maybe even offer the reviewer the option of expanding on the review they left.
Sometimes though, it isn’t about how to encourage customers to leave a review. It can also be about how to prevent alienating a customer or putting them off leaving a review of the company.
A sure-fire way of forcing customers into not writing reviews, or intentionally posting a negative review, is to make them feel forced and obliged to leave a review. Constantly hassling them with e-mails, or leaflets, is not just asking a customer to leave a review, it’s borderline obsessive.
Send an e-mail once, to new customers who sign up to an online service or send a leaflet through the post once. Other than that, businesses must let the customer decide whether they want to leave a review or not.
Also, if the business has provided a customer with a poor experience or bad service, and the person isn’t the type to air their grievances online, a review is probably not going to happen. The customer may just want to put the experience behind them and move on from it.
Businesses must remember that reviewing is done off the customers own back, in their own time, and at their leisure, so the company must appreciate every review as long as it’s honest and open.