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.
This is where Amazon Customer Reviews come in. 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!
Up Your Customer Service
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 personalisation 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 personalisation to your business.
One great way is to send a personalised 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.
We understand that putting in this level of personalisation 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 stationary (and not to mention delivery). With Scribeless, you can create personalised 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. 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 personalised customer experience. You decide what you want to say and who you want to say it to, and we’ll handle the rest.
Embrace All Reviews, No Matter How Little They May Glow
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 centre 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 the personal touch can make a world of difference and it shows that you care about your customers’ buying experience.
Keep Lines Open… But Don’t Be Pushy
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. Communications have gone cold. You’re missing out on a valuable review there, 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.
With Amazon, it can get a little trickier because your communications with customers are extremely limited and their email addresses aren’t directly accessible. So why not use what you have? If you still have the delivery address that you used to ship the customer’s order, try sending a personalised handwritten note to follow up with them. Ask them how they’re finding their product, or if there is anything that you can do to help improve your customers’ buying experience in the future. Here you can also mention how customer reviews help your business and ask if they’d mind just dropping you a bit of feedback. It’s always better to be honest. This technique would also be pretty effective with those that have left positive customer feedback, or asked questions during the purchasing phase, but did not leave a product review, as people who have already had communications with you are far more likely to reengage at a later time.
Alternatively, you could pre-empt this situation entirely by setting up some direct mail correspondence. It may come across a little too pushy to send a note the day after they received their products, and they may not have had opportunity to really test if it’s the right product for them, so I recommend waiting at least a week before you try and reach out to your customers again. Scribeless’ seamless integration with Zapier means that it’s simple and easy to set up automatic direct mail correspondences. If it’s been a week since your customer’s order was delivered, Scribeless can send a personalised handwritten thank you letter asking the buyer to keep in touch and let you know how they’re finding your product, or if you receive a negative review, Scribeless can automatically send a personalised handwritten apology, asking for the customers thoughts on how they could improve. Whatever works best for you. It’s your message, we just make it a reality. See if Scribeless can help you gather more positive reviews by delivering that personal touch to your customers.