Wave your hand if want more sales leads from your website! It’s frustrating when you’ve invested a lot of time and resources building a website that isn’t returning revenue. Changing your website from a brochure to a revenue-generating machine is possible. Let’s start by putting social proof on your site.
Social Proof Influences Decisions
Why is social proof important? Because it can sway the choices we make. When we are unsure about a decision we often seek opinions from others. Those opinions are social proof and they help us choose an appropriate course of action. Positive social influence becomes a trust builder between a business and its prospects. Once a bond of trust is created a sale usually follows.
Just about all of us have consulted social proof in the form of a review before making a purchase. I always check reviews before I buy a book. Recently I consulted the choir of Amazon reviewers for their opinions about a sequel to a fabulous book I had just finished. To my surprise the sequel was a huge disappointment to the author’s fan base. Despite the warnings I bought the book.
As it turned out, the choir was preaching the truth and I never finished the sequel. The testimonials were spot on.
Customer Testimonials Can Turn Website Visitors into Prospects
Customer testimonials are social buzz that can move first-time website visitors to the next step in the sales cycle. So load your website with plenty of them.
Are you nervous about collecting client recommendations? Well, don’t be. I’ve laid out four attainable steps that will put your jitters at ease. You’ll learn how to capture client testimonials and effectively use them to gain prospects. And, how to get the most out of recommendations by publishing them on other venues.
How to Use Customer Testimonials to Get Website Leads
1. Ask Satisfied Clients for a Testimonial
Timing is everything when asking for a recommendation so pick the right opportunity to extend your request to a client. Here are some prime times to ask:
- After a client sends you positive feedback in email, over the phone, in person or on a social network.
- Add the request on a customer survey. A good place would be right after you ask a client if he/she is satisfied with the service or product received. It can be built as a conditional question that only appears if the client answers favorably to the satisfaction question.
- After you do a big favor for a client.
Not everyone will reach you on your website so think about other places you want a review such as LinkedIn, local search directories or other social networks. Now is the time to tell your client every place you’d like to put the testimonial so include all venues in your initial request.
2. Make it Easy for Clients to Provide a Recommendation
Make it easy for people to recommend you by following up and offering to write or edit the testimonial for them. I’m not advocating putting words in their mouth. Make sure your happy clients craft their own testimonials by asking them to list a few reasons they enjoyed working with you.
Here’s another tactic you can use to help your clients discover good reasons your work was top notch. Ask them to answer these questions. Keep in mind that not all of them may apply to your project, so only send clients questions that make sense for your situation.
- What product or service was provided?
- What benefits did your organization receive from the product or service? If applicable please supply data (the service decreased costs by x amount, or increased sales by x percent, or reduced service calls by x amount).
- What problem or headache did the product or service solve?
- Did you receive any compliments about the product or service from your customers?
- What was the person or team like to work with?
- Were there any situations when the person or team went above and beyond your expectations?
Then compile your client’s feedback into a well-written testimonial that flows nicely. Make sure the client reviews and approves the recommendation before you use it.
3. Put Customer Testimonials on Your Website
Put testimonials in various areas of your website, such as the Home page or pages that explain your services. Not all of them have to sit on a Testimonial page. Plus Your Business created a lot of social proof by putting their testimonials on the front page.
They added photos to the testimonials which adds a human touch and makes the recommendations more trustworthy. The testimonials are well branded which communicates the professionalism and high quality this community delivers.
Can’t get photos for your testimonials? Don’t worry. Here is another creative idea used by Boulder NeuroMovement The organization had so much social proof the testimonials were spread throughout the website and branded with a design element from the logo.
4. Get Additional Mileage from Customer Testimonials
If you get the green light from your client to publish a testimonial elsewhere, research the publication process. Most platforms outside of your website will require that the person recommending you puts the testimonial on the network. In these cases, send your client thorough publishing instructions along with the content so the person can easily put the testimonial on the platform.
Positive comments about your work and client relationships are social proof that can tip the scales in your favor when prospects visit your website.
Think of testimonials as happy customers talking to folks who visit your store or business. The customers are there 24 hours a day, every day of the week. Even when you are not around.
By timing your request well and making it easy for your happy clients to form around your website, you can make lasting impressions that build trust and bring in more business.