The online marketplace has grown to become an absolutely colossal industry, and it is only getting bigger. While online purchases only made up 7% of all retail sales in 2010, in 2019 nearly 20% of all retail sales were done online. It only makes sense that so many people are trying to get a piece of the action, and a great way to do that is through selling with Amazon (the site holds 49% of US e-commerce sales).
2 million people are trying to do this, in fact. The problem is that, with all these sellers vying for attention in a marketplace flooded with alternatives, it can be hard to stand out. The same problem falls on the other side of the checkout, as having so many options available means it can be difficult for the consumer to identify the best choice.
The best way to gain traction is through reviews. They let customers know that you are a reliable seller, that you provide both excellent products and excellent customer service, and that you are certainly worth buying from.
In fact, 93% of buyers say that their decisions are influenced by reviews, so it is crucial for you to put your best foot forward if you ever hope to increase sales, and more than that, maintain repeat customers.
I’ve included a few tips below on how to make sure that your customers are vocal about their satisfaction, and how to make those who weren’t quite happy with their experience, VERY happy with their experience!
While the numbers that your customers bring may look pretty good through the eyes of a salesperson, you need to remember that they are people behind the screens, and people want certain things from those that they buy from, now more than ever.
Recent studies have shown that customers are wanting more and more of that personal touch with their shopping experiences, and only 22% of customers are currently happy with the levels of personalization that they’re receiving. This means that you have the opportunity to make yourself known as one of those very few sellers who go that extra step to make sure their customers are delighted with their service.
While it may sound like hard work, particularly if you already have a high number of sales to process, there are a few easy things you can do to add that extra level of personalization to your business.
One great way is to send a personalized handwritten thank you note with your order. This makes the buyer feel like their purchase was unique, that they’ve just received something special and meaningful from you, and it gives you the opportunity to really flex your creativity and come up with something that will stay with them.
The sentiment here is up to you; you could simply thank them for their purchase, emphasise your hope that they are happy with the product, and that if they’re not then you are more than happy to resolve any issues they may have.
This is also a fantastic opportunity to remind them to leave you a customer review, as Amazon has no problem with its sellers asking for feedback so long as it does not solicit positive reviews specifically.
A study conducted by the Spiegel Research Center on the impact of online reviews on sales figures uncovered a number of interesting facts about the online market. Chief among them was the effectiveness of a strong review presence (having available reviews on a site can lead to a 270% conversion rate), and the ideal quality of those reviews in building customer trust.
You may be surprised to learn that it is not necessarily five-star reviews that encourage further sales. In fact, if your reviews are ‘too perfect’, all hitting those maximum five stars, then customers are likely to become suspicious of the product, or even the seller. They’re seen as too good to be true.
Naturally, you’re going to want to have as many great reviews as you can get and show them off front and center of your product, but if you find that there’s a couple of black spots among them hitting maybe two or three stars, there’s still no cause for concern. Generally, you only want to average out at about a four-star rating, and having those few little sub-par reviews on show actually testifies to the legitimacy of you and your product.
But that’s not to say you should just let the bad reviews roll in. You shouldn’t panic, but you should still be proactive. If you receive a negative review from a buyer, try reaching out to them. Ask them why they were dissatisfied with their purchase and if there is any way that you could improve upon your service in the future.
You’ll be surprised how much this little step will go in turning your unhappy buyers around. Adding that personal touch can make a world of difference and it shows that you really care about your customers’ buying experience.
So you’ve processed a customer’s order and shipped the product. They’ve received it… and that’s it. No product reviews, no seller feedback, nothing. Communications have gone cold, but it isn't time to give up yet. You’re missing out on a valuable review there, and it’s absolutely worth trying to reconnect.
There’s nothing wrong with reaching out to these quiet customers - in fact it’s common practice for many sellers. Some companies have even found that 80% of their follow-ups resulted in a review. These customers often have valuable feedback, and a polite, personal follow up is sure to show that you really do value their opinion.
That being said, there's a time to stop. If your outreach isn't working, it's best to call it quits before you annoy your customer too much. Some customers simply want to buy and be done with things, and by relentlessly chasing for comment, you may be putting them off future orders.
A handful of well spaced-out, personal correspondence can win a customer back round, but make sure you know when the gig is up.
We understand that putting in this level of personalization can be a lot of work. After all, writing out all these letters by hand is going to take a whole lot of time, and it won’t be long before you start to feel the growing cost of stationery (and not to mention delivery).
With Scribeless, however, you can create personalized handwritten letters at scale. Our use of a unique Artificial Intelligence and Advanced Printing technology means that we can create handwritten notes, indiscernible from the real thing, quickly, while keeping things affordable.
Scribeless also has the added benefit of being partnered with Shopify, which alongside other integrations can set triggers for notes to be created automatically. You can choose those triggers yourself, but we'd suggest an automated thank you and review request after a first order goes a long way to building a lasting relationship with your customer which is sure to benefit you both!
So if you’re writing an intimate thank you note for one or one thousand customers, you can rest assured that you will be giving them the best personalized customer experience. You decide what you want to say and who you want to say it to, and we’ll handle the rest!