There are more than a million stores on Shopify. In fact, over 1.2 million people are actively using Shopify. However, getting your products and brand closer to customers is challenging nowadays — especially due to the vast number of shopping choices. But, here’s an interesting fact for the modern-day retailers out there:
“Shoppers read at least 10 online customer reviews before they feel they can trust a brand.”
Generating unique, high-quality content on every product page is a big challenge for eCommerce businesses. Scaling content for thousands of products in the inventory is a Herculean task that online retailers cannot possibly handle on their own as it demands a lot of time and resources.
In addition to the complexity of search engine ranking, Google algorithms are becoming more intuitive with every update. They filter out websites that do not have original content and those with duplicate content within the site. But on the bright side, when the content on a website is unique and valuable, Google recognizes it for being trustworthy. So, if a brand wants to stand out in search results, it is not enough to just generate unique content for the website but also to ensure that the unique content is compelling and valuable.
The Significance of Social Proof and a Few Ways to do it Right
A study conducted by Hubspot found that an average consumer reads 10 online reviews before making a purchase decision. What’s more, 88% of consumers trust user reviews as much as personal recommendations.
Predictably, customer reviews have emerged to be one of the most effective forms of social proof. Customer reviews and testimonials can be displayed in a number of different formats and also on different pages on your website to facilitate product discovery.
1. Showcase Reviews On The Product Page
Add more credibility with user-generated content
Almost 95% of shoppers read reviews before making a purchase on an eCommerce store.
Display customer reviews and ratings on the products category page as well as on the product page are how you should play your credibility card. Since customer reviews are such a commonly-used approach, look for ways to catch your customer’s attention or add to the social proof reviews naturally provide.
The product page should have all the right ingredients needed for anyone to make a decision – the aggregate star rating, number of customer reviews, and the entire collection of customer reviews should be listed at the bottom of every product page.
2. Promote reviews on your website
Improve the credibility of your products & brand through reviews
Use your customer reviews on the most important pages of your website. Research states that people trust the same and take them as “product recommendations”. Reviews play a crucial role in influencing a person when it is placed close to the CTA button. Remember, the buyers read a minimum of ten reviews before making the final decision.
3. Deploy smart pop-ups to collect reviews
Get 11 times more positive reviews with intuitive eCommerce pop-ups.
Collecting high-quality user-generated content is a challenge for most online stores. So how can constructive user feedback be collected?
Less intrusive pop-ups are one of the best ways to educate your visitors about your business. And most importantly, tailor your popups to specific sections of your Shopify store.
Ecommerce pop-ups are critical not just for collecting user reviews, but they drive user engagement and convince potential customers to take the first step toward conversion. Use a review pop-up that engages with customers at a strategic touchpoint without impeding their user experience.
4. Incorporate Picture reviews
Attract more customers with customer review photos.
Reviews from customers serve as authentic endorsements to shoppers. Integrating user-generated photos into the eCommerce store helps shoppers find the social proof they’re looking for. Visual user-generated content, when used strategically, drives conversions and improves customer engagement. Here are a few ways in which user-generated images can help brands:
- Acts as Social Proof: Shoppers love seeing reviews from fellow users who have purchased and enjoyed a brand’s products. Picture reviews visually engage shoppers through authentic storytelling; they feel personal and real.
- Makes the brand appear real: Research shows that more than half the visitors to a website leave without purchasing because the images are not very helpful. User-generated photos can show shoppers what the products look like in action. This is especially useful for fashion eCommerce, where the pictures can help shoppers decide if the product is right for them.
- Lowers marketing costs: Brands optimize their marketing efforts by making the most of available content assets. The struggle of creating new content can be offset by smartly using the visual content created by consumers. User-generated images perfectly complement the professional product photographs on the website and infuse unique characters to the products.
5. Leverage Google Rich snippets to display user reviews
Build your organic traffic and take it to the next level.
Score more on your organic traffic and increase your user engagement!
The ranking is not simply about how well you’ve optimized your site. It is also about updating fresh, original content periodically. The SEO advantage of user-generated content can simply not be overlooked.
Ecommerce brands can structure their websites to match Schema standards so that all the search engines can display relevant results with UGC like the aggregate of ratings. Customer-centric search results or rich snippets can improve click-through rates (CTR) significantly.
Updating customer reviews will help you gain Rich Snippets and Google Seller Ratings.
Drive Customer Engagement with Shopify Email Marketing
Shopify Email marketing is crucial for eCommerce businesses because it’s a way for you to reach your customers directly — without relying on social media or search engine algorithms. Furthermore, Emails outperform all other marketing channels when it comes to selling online. However, the success of your email campaigns relies on how well your recipients interact with your emails. By tracking the key performance indicators (KPIs) — such as email open rate, click-through, unique-opens, etc., you can understand whether or not your emails are successfully engaging subscribers.
Powerful abandoned cart emails
Recover your lost shoppers with smart and personalized email marketing.
Online shopping cart abandonment is inevitable. As they say, abandoned carts are a daily occurrence for online retailers. You can, however, reduce the numbers to a great extent.
Shopify abandoned cart email is one of the best ways to increase user engagement and to recover the carts. You can figure out ideas to pull the customers back even after they’ve left your Shopify store without making a purchase. This could often turn out to be a goldmine of endless sales waiting to be tapped in.
Since these emails have personalized recommendations, the chances of upselling and cross-selling are invariably high.
Here’s an abandoned cart email example with the product recommendations:
Tips for Encouraging Email Engagement
- Content relevance is everything, so make sure your email subject line conveys the value of the content in your email message.
- Create personalized email content and offers to keep subscribers opening and engaging with your emails. (Adding relevant product recommendations is a great way to personalize your emails).
- Segment and target your recipients based on factors such as demographics, geographics, purchase history, and website browsing behavior, and more.
- CTA’s are the gateway to the sales funnel. This is why it’s imperative to pick the right placement, use action-oriented words, create a sense of urgency — when you design the CTA button.
- Optimize your emails for mobile devices.
- Say yes to email automation. A/B testing, personalization, and dynamic content are some of the automation features that you can use to help boost email engagement.
Invest in customer relationship
This is an easy way to re-engage with your customers. You get to interact with them as a brand and establish a strong relationship over time. In this way, they will recognize your brand as relevant and helpful.
Happy customers turn loyal. Optimizing your customer relationship can have a positive impact on retaining loyal customers and also helps in new user acquisition through referrals.
Above all, if you could add your brand’s personality to your emails, and they will start identifying you to be unique.
The Role of Emotional Intelligence in Building Better Customer Relationships
Robust customer relationship is absolutely central to customer engagement. By fulfilling the customers’ demands for a high-level customer experience, brands can develop a strong and loyal customer base. One negative experience is enough to persuade 51% of customers not to do business with your company again. Now, what is the role that EI plays in nurturing customer relationships?
If a customer purchases your products repeatedly, it’s because he/she feels great about buying those products. That feeling stems from the product quality, how your customer service agents treat them, and even your brand’s personality and culture. The bottom line is that simply using technology for real-time support is not sufficient. Brands must invest in emotionally sensitive and intelligent agents who are capable of establishing personal connections with customers.
Moreover, go the extra mile for your customers. It’s the way how meaningful relationships are made.
Optimize your Back In Stock Marketing
Stop losing sales to stockouts.
One of the best ways to increase customer engagement and bring back your customers is through back-in-stock or restock alerts. Customers get notified when products are available again in an eCommerce store.
Studies show that “Return shoppers to the shop more easily with automated notifications of the items they want to buy.”
Don’t lose customers to stock-outs. Re-engage interested shoppers by sending back in stock notifications via email, SMS, and Facebook Messenger as soon as the product is restocked. Use back-in-stock notifications to win back your customers through email, SMS, Facebook Messenger, and even web push notifications when they come back to your store.
Additional tip: It’s all about loyalty
Reward Customers for their Loyalty and Encourage them to Keep Coming Back.
Loyal customers mean more and consistent business.
When a customer is loyal to a brand, they aren’t easily swayed by price or availability. They would rather pay more and ensure the same quality service and product they already know and love.
But, do you know loyal customers aren’t born; they are made?
Long-term loyalty starts with a smart plan. As part of their plan to cultivate loyalty, retailers offer free goods, discounts, and special buying opportunities to regular customers. Some other means to reward loyal customers include:
- Discounts for high-spending customers: Offer price reductions to customers when they reach a specific spending target.
- A Simple Points-based system: Allow frequent customers to earn points, which further translates rewards such as a discount code, freebie, or special offers.
- Use a tier system: Offer tiny rewards as a base offering for being a part of the program, and then inspire customers to keep coming back — by increasing the value of the rewards as they move up the loyalty ladder.
- Non-monetary rewards: Consider featuring a customer as the best customer of the week or month — on your website, social media, or in your next email.
Social Media and Customer Engagement
While it’s true that social media platforms can be effective for promoting products and services, it’s also just as important to leverage these channels in order to foster customer engagement.
Over recent years, social media platforms have evolved substantially and are now used across the world for both personal and business purposes. When used for personal reasons, these platforms allow users to communicate with friends and family, share media, and keep up with recent trends. On a business level, they facilitate customer engagement and communication, making them crucial for businesses of all sizes.
How social media helps with customer engagement?
Social media channels help boost customer satisfaction levels and engagement in a number of ways. This is the reason why they have become enormously popular among modern-day businesses.
- Build a social media community. Communication is key to building an active community. 57% of consumers say they will stay loyal to a brand if there is more human communication. If you want to build an audience around your brand, you can’t hide behind your website any longer. You need to meet your customers where they are.
- Develop an engagement strategy. While knowing what your customers care about is one thing, using that information to strengthen your relationship with them is another. To succeed in this, make sure you have a consistent engagement schedule, know what type of content, offers, and discounts you need to provide, start conversation activities like contests, polls, etc.
- Interact with your most active social advocates. Constantly engage with your most loyal social advocates so that they will continue supporting your brand.
- Make your loyal followers feel special. Make your audience feel special by offering special deals and promotions. For instance, you can offer some exclusive benefits for repeated customers.
Text reviews or picture reviews certainly increase user engagement. They establish strong emotional connections between brands and consumers. Textual user reviews, when paired with photos from customers, generate more conversions. Gift cards or discounted gift cards, on the other hand, can help to strengthen the services and/or products you offer to your shoppers, resulting in a win-win situation for both brands as well as consumers.
Follow the steps outlined in this guide to quickly and easily boost your Shopify store’s user-engagement. You’ll find it is simple to engage your prospects, and it’ll drive unparalleled results for your business.
About the author
Narendar Rajagopalan is the Director of Marketing at TargetBay with a passion for MarTech and all things eCommerce. When he’s not at work, he will be busy drinking Madras Filter Coffee or green tea (without sugar!)