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The power of testimonials on your website

Positive testimonials can be a powerful tool for gaining new customers and increasing sales, Kate Webster offers some useful advice to help you incorporate them into your business' website
 Using testimonials to your advantage is not always easy
 
 

Written by Kate Webster

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A good reputation and loyal following is imperative to the ongoing success of your business. It’s no secret that your customers tend to believe what their friends, family and online reviews tell them.

“A recent survey by Chicago marketing firm Ryan Partnership found 36 percent of 8,000 shoppers polled used online reviews and recommendations this year, up from 12 percent two years ago,” reported FamousBloggers.net.

Because of this, positive testimonials on your website can be a powerful tool for gaining new customers and increasing sales. If you have a good relationship with your clients, embrace their satisfaction with your service and use their good words to boost your business.

Here are some examples of ways you can use testimonials on your website and benefit:

Help Build Trust

Often customers are confronted with too many options when looking for a product or service; making it difficult to determine what’s trustworthy and what’s a scam. Including testimonials on your site will put your potential customer at ease and assure them of your product or service quality.

  • Be sure to display the client’s first and last name (or at least last initial), city and state, and their business name to increase credibility. Also consider using a thumbnail picture so that the potential client can better relate to the satisfied customer
  • Make sure your testimonials sound natural. Be sure to use the client’s own words, but it should still sound cohesive and conversational

Types of Testimonials

Testimonials come in a variety of forms, all of which depend on who the person is. Usually, the greater authority the individual has, the more credibility and attention their testimonial is given.

  • Expert opinions are great if you work in a specific and competitive industry. If you have access to an expert, or someone who is respected for their extensive work in your field, a testimonial from them could be very effective. Be sure to include their credentials or business affiliations
  • Celebrity testimonials (endorsements) can be very effective for swaying public opinion, as people tend to imitate the trends and acts of their favorite social figures
  • Customer testimonials are from any customer who is happy with your service. It’s important that you don’t underestimate the power of their opinions. Clients tend to relate to others from similar demographics as them, and may find the opinion of someone in the same situation even more valuable than that of a celebrity

Use Them Effectively

It may seem fairly obvious that testimonials can be beneficial for business, but using testimonials to your advantage is not always easy. You want to be sure that you include all of the essential information, yet avoid being too aggressive in your quest for credibility.

  • When asking for testimonials from clients, only ask those who you formed a particularly strong connection with. Be a good judge of character when deciding who to approach for a testimonial and which customers you might want to skip
  • Don’t overwhelm your homepage with lengthy testimonials. Overcrowding your page with exaggerated pitches and reviews might come off the wrong way, so instead consider featuring the best testimonial (with a “read more” link) on your homepage, and then design your website to provide an option in your menu where the rest can be found
  • Be sure to keep collecting them as you go. Adding new testimonials is a great way to keep your webpage updated and continue to display the quality of your service

Reviews on a site can boost conversion by 20 percent. If you are providing a quality service and maintain good relationships with your clients, use their kind words to your advantage and include them on your website. If used correctly, testimonials can be a very powerful tool in gaining the trust of potential customers and informing them of the benefits of your service.

Kate Webster writes for lead generation resource, ResourceNation.com. She focuses on a variety of topics including Marketing, Human Resources Procurement and Software.

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