Buying products online has a bad reputation from the many people who have really treated their customers badly. Since you can not just walk into a store talk directly to the manager or force the owners to speak with you, you are limited to phone calls, emails, or maybe not even this much in some cases. People online will not hesitate to tell others about their poor experiences to keep others from buying from any company that did not treat them right.
Since people are so skeptical of online businesses, they will frequently visit review sites before ever making a purchase. In fact, some will go to the degree of going to review sites before ever checking out their products or going to their website. For example, lets say I know that hundreds of business are selling computers online. I want to go with one of the more reputable businesses, so I will go find reviews on sites. Then I may go to their site and see if they have a computer that I am looking for. This is not an uncommon practice which means that your reviews can be crucial to your businesses success.
Reviews can help your ecommerce business gain credibility in the marketplace. This is especially the case if you are in a packed market where you are competing with several businesses. You should look forward to having numerous reviews, even if all of them are not positive. Others will note that you are doing business with other people, and therefore, you are not new to shipping items properly or handling online buyers.
The biggest thing you want to do online is create a buzz about your products or services. You want others to talk about what you are doing, how you treated them, and about where they purchased their product or service. This is referred to as “going viral”. If you find that others are talking about your business without you having to force them into a conversation, you will likely find your traffic growing substantially, and in return, more conversions into sales. This is the overall goal, and it can be jumpstarted by positive reviews about your business.
So you may be asking, how do I get positive reviews or keep from getting negative ones? The biggest key to keeping your business on track is to go above and beyond in customer service. There is no doubt that you will run into some problems on occasion. You may ship a product and it might get smashed in shipping. You might get an email that they even received the wrong product. You will have some angry customers every now and then but you have to find the best way to deal with them. This may cost you some money out of your pocket, but this is far better than scratching it up as an unsatisfied customer. Rather, send them a free shirt, if you having shipping issues, let them mail it back, you cover costs, send the next item as a high priority mail and try to get it done as quickly as possible. You will find that instead of a negative review, they will more than likely take what was a bad situation and let others know how well you treated them when things were out of your own control. When going above and beyond what you have to do, you will see the appreciation given from your online buyers.
By Aaron Goldberg
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