October 16, 2015 by George Eberstadt
You probably know that sending an email post-purchase to request a product review is critical to getting a healthy volume of reviews. But you may not know that it’s also essential for ensuring that the sentiment of the reviews you collect fairly represents the sentiment of your customer base, overall.
Here’s an example from Jockey.com. After switching to TurnTo for ratings & reviews, there was a period of 6 weeks when they were not sending out review solicitation emails (RSEs); the only reviews they collected were from shoppers who returned to their site, on their own, to submit one. Then Jockey turned on the RSEs. Not surprisingly, the volume of reviews they collected increased by 7X.
But here was the surprise: the average rating also improved – by over half a star, from under 3.8 to over 4.3! That’s a huge improvement, with the critical benefit of accurately signaling to shoppers the high quality of Jockey products.
Why the improvement in average star ratings? It turns out that the people who go through the effort to come back to your site to write a review, without being prompted to do so, are disproportionately the unhappy ones – the ones with a complaint to vent. So if you are only capturing reviews from this group, you are over-representing the negative sentiment in your customer base and under-representing your happy customers. When you reduce the barrier to writing reviews by sending customers an email requesting one, you get a review-writing population that is much more representative of the overall sentiment of your customer base. In the case of Jockey, the before-and-after gain of over a half-star across their full catalog is the kind of improvement you might otherwise have to do a product-line refresh to achieve.
So in case the benefits of a much greater volume of reviews aren’t enough to convince you to send out a review solicitation email, keep in mind that you’ll be more accurately showing the positive sentiment of your customer base, too!
August 17, 2015 by John Swords
That’s exactly what Ian MacDonald, Director of eCommerce for Silver Star Brands has experienced leveraging TurnTo’s Community Q&A. Ian was looking to improve SEO performance, increase website traffic and lift conversion rates. He thought he’d find an answer using customer-generated content, but he already had ratings and reviews. He needed more.
Ian implemented our Community Q&A and proprietary “Checkout Chatter” products which immediately began creating Customer-Generated Content.
Silver Star Brands’ customers can get quick answers to their questions right on the product detail page from fellow customers, staff experts, and the store’s FAQ content from the help center. To maximize the usefulness of this utility, Ian strategically used an “input teaser” on the product page, enabling shoppers to submit their questions without having to scroll.
Additionally, at the time of purchase, Silver Star Brands’ customers are asked the simple question “Why did you choose this?” TurnTo’s Checkout Chatter enables the company to collect short, positive sentiments from customers, equating to more Customer-Generated Content for their sites that is indexable for search engines.
Here are just a few results Silver Star Brands have realized thus far (a link to the full case study is below):
As a “bonus” – this incredible volume of Customer-Generated Content from both Q&A and Checkout Chatter is indexed by search engines, which has greatly improved Silver Star Brands’ SEO.
November 6, 2012 by George Eberstadt
We don’t usually link to our competitors’ marketing collateral; they don’t usually link to ours. But when we saw PowerReviews’ latest case study of their “Social Answers” product running on Skechers.com, we thought it would be interesting to check out just how “Social” it really is. We figured: if this is the site they are featuring in their newest case study, it has got to be their newest product and a best-practice implementation.
So we did a simple test. We asked a normal shopper question on each of 8 products on Skechers.com through the PowerReviews tool and we asked the identical question about the identical product on Shoes.com, which also sells Skechers shoes and uses TurnTo for Social Q&A. Like usual, we kept track of when answers were posted, and if the answers were emailed before they were posted we counted the earlier email time. Half the questions were asked on both sites at around 9:00am eastern, and half were asked at around 1:00pm.
The bottom line: TurnTo generated >3X more answers total, >90% were truly “Social” (from actual past customers), most arrived in 1/3 the time, with 1/4 the staff workload vs PowerReviews.
- Just one hour after the questions were submitted, the 8 questions asked through the TurnTo system had generated 7 social answers. There were no answers to the questions asked through the PowerReviews system.
- At 8 hours, the TurnTo system had delivered 16 social answers and 2 staff answers. Still none through PowerReviews.
- At 24 hours, TurnTo was up to 20 social and 2 staff answers. PowerReviews delivered 8 staff answers – one to each question – but no social answers. In fact, even after 2 weeks, PowerReviews never produced a social answer.
- At 24 hours, 7 of the 8 questions asked through TurnTo had received at least 2 answers total, including at least one social answer. One of the TurnTo questions was unanswered. The 8 questions asked through PowerReviews received one staff answer each.
Skechers says they’ve seen a 30% increase in sales when Q&A is installed on their product pages. We believe it, and we congratulate them! Social Q&A is a powerful way to increase conversion and to create the sort of user-generated content that search engines increasingly favor.
But we also wonder: imagine how much better their results would have been if their Social Q&A system delivered 3X more answers with most answers coming from actual past customers in under 8 hours (many in under 1 hour), the way TurnTo’s does?
Appendix: here are the specific questions asked on each shoe type.
|Skechers Men Energy – Downforce||Can these shoes be worn in the rain?|
|Skechers Women’s Keepsakes Postage||Can I wear these outside?|
|Skechers Work Women’s Softie Med/Wide||Are these shoes good for running?|
|Skechers Women’s Dream Come True||I have a pretty wide foot. Will these shoes work for me?|
|Skechers Men’s Sparta||I need a good pair of shoes for street running and hiking. Do you think these shoes will work for both?|
|Skechers Women’s Keepsakes Boiling Pt||I have a wide calves and am worried these boots won’t fit. How wide is the calf area of the boot?|
|Skechers Women’s Dlite Clog||I have a pretty narrow foot. Do you think these shoes will fit me well? Are they good for lots of walking?|
|Skechers Work Men’s Galley||I’m on my feet at work all day… are these shoes very comfortable?|