The business card is an old dog that’s learned quite a few new tricks.
A lot of different print work comes through our doors at Paw Print, but business cards consistently remain the most popular order. Business cards trace their roots back to 15th century China, when visitors left “visiting cards” at the homes of businessmen they hoped to meet with. Over the centuries these cards evolved to convey a variety of information, but one thing remained constant: they were designed to make an impression.
Often a business card is one of the first things a customer or potential client will receive from you. A well-designed business card can go a long way towards creating a favorable impression of your business, as well as generating engaging conversations between you and your customers.
Storytelling is an essential and ancient part of human communication. Before the advent of writing, detailed stories were told orally, passed from generation to generation. Stories hold meaning for cultures, reflecting their histories, beliefs, and customs. We tell stories to learn, build relationships, and make sense of the world around us.
In fact, our brains are programmed to recognize patterns and find meaning in those patterns. A story is a kind of pattern, and stories are an effective marketing tool that you can use to build connection with your audience.
There are good stories, and then there are great stories, the ones we remember. But what makes a compelling, memorable story?
Recently, I enjoyed a delicious meal at a local restaurant celebrating with a friend. Despite seeing advertisements for this establishment, I had never been. But lately in conversation several people mentioned to me what an exceptional experience they had dining there.
After that, I couldn’t stay away. Recommendations from friends and colleagues spoke to me in a way that ads never had. I stopped in for a bite and was not disappointed.
While a conversation may seem like just another part of each day, in this case it functioned as a marketing device. Word of Mouth Marketing (sometimes referred to as WOMM or WOM), is a crucial tool in any business’ marketing kit. Consciously or unconsciously, you’re likely participating in WOMM frequently. Anytime you recommend a product, restaurant, establishment, service, or destination, you’re influencing whether another person decides to patronize that business or purchase that product.
You may be asking, is this really marketing? The conversations we have from day to day aren’t scripted and approved by a company’s marketing department. But they have just as much, if not more, power than traditional marketing channels to make or break your business.
It’s the season of giving, and as you celebrate the holidays with family and friends, you may be feeling a renewed sense of generosity and goodwill. At this time of year many of us give not only to those on our gift lists, but also to those who may be struggling to feel the same good cheer that we’ve come to expect during the holiday season.
Many companies choose to give back during the holidays as well. Your business can make an impact by making charitable giving a part of your business model, not only seasonally, but year-round. This kind of altruism isn’t just good for the spirit—it has important benefits for your business as well.
How Charitable Giving Helps Businesses
Giving Motivates Your Employees
While the good vibes of giving a gift may fade after a short while, long-term involvement with a charitable organization has lasting and powerful effects on employee satisfaction. A 2017 survey by Great Place to Work found that employees who had a positive experience of giving back at their companies were:
4 times more likely to give extra to get a job done
More likely to be brand ambassadors
More likely to want to stay at their companies long-term
Another study by the Cone Cause found that employees involved in causes through their company were 28% more likely to be proud of their company’s values and 36% more likely to feel a strong sense of loyalty than employees who were not involved. Philanthropy can also help employees bond as they work together for a cause, building a strong sense of teamwork and morale.
Generate Positive Vibes for Your Brand
When you make a long-term, involved commitment with a charitable organization, awareness of your brand spreads throughout the community. At the same time that you’re doing good, your community learns who your brand is and what matters to you. You’re building connections with members of your community, and your name will be talked about locally in a positive light. And, because word-of-mouth is the top way that consumers make decisions about brands and products, you’ll be generating positive conversations about your brand that will lead consumers to look to you for future needs.
Stand Out from the Crowd
Since not all companies are going to incorporate charitable giving, doing so differentiates you from your competition. The Cone Cause found that in the last year, 41% of Americans bought products because those items were associated with an issue or cause. Consumers, especially millennials, are more willing to purchase products or services from companies that support causes. There is an added sense of trust and of humanity that is present when a brand’s values align with those of consumers—which leads to increased customer loyalty.
Sometimes donations of funds, items, and some volunteer expenses can be deducted from your taxes. Ask your accountant for more specific information on how you might do this.
Walk the Talk
First, consider why you are giving back and what cause you will give to. The more personal your causes and reasons for giving are, the more genuine you will come across. And, the easier it will be to share your story. Maybe you or a loved one was helped by a cause, and you want to support others experiencing similar situations. Or maybe you recognize certain opportunities or advantages you’ve had and want others to have those same opportunities. It’s not the size of the gift but the sincerity of your giving that matters most.
Also think about how your chosen cause ties in with your company. If you sell pet food and supplies, you could support local pet shelters. At the same time you’re helping animals find loving homes, you’re creating potential customers for your business who will need to shop for their new pet. Or if you sell women’s clothing, you could sponsor a fundraiser for breast cancer research. Many of your customers may have had experience with cancer or know someone who has, so you’ll be deepening the connections you have with them.
Other Ways to Give
Have a portion of overall profits or overall proceeds from a certain product or service go to a charity.
Design a product or service specifically for the cause you want to support. You don’t have to give 100% of profits to the charity. But you can market the product as created with the intention of supporting a specific group or cause.
Market products as buy one, give one—consumers know each item they buy will be matched and given to someone in need.
Set up scholarships to help students succeed. If you’re a tech company, you could support a scholarship that allows students access to special opportunities like coding classes or workshops.
Whichever strategy you decide to use, it’s essential that you are consistent in what you give and when you give. Maybe you decide to give quarterly. You can tell your customers that in the last 3 months you were able to give a specific amount with their support.
Contributing financially to a charity is admirable. However, giving money alone will not have the same impact on your employees or your community as getting involved. Encourage employees to participate in events, serve food at a food shelf, or personally drop off donations. Some companies incorporate days into their annual schedule that employees can take off to volunteer. Consider closing the office for a day and being present to support your cause at a big event.
Being more deeply involved increases your company’s connection to your community, is more meaningful and enjoyable for employees, and helps build your story. Your contributions to an organization are more meaningful and impactful if they grow and evolve over time. And, if you personally interact with your cause, you’ll gain a deeper understanding of who your cause is helping and how they are benefitting from its services. The deeper that understanding, the better you’ll be able to share your story and gain more support for the organization and for your business.
But how much of your copy is actually being read? According to Hinge Marketing, visitors only read an average of 28% of the words on a web page.
The good news is, this is an average, and won’t be true for every website. While some websites aren’t user-friendly, your site doesn’t have to be one of them. You can increase the percentage of words read on your site, generate more traffic, and drive more sales using these 5 tips.
1) Know your SEO
Driving traffic to your web page is the first step, and it’s an important one. In order for this to happen you’ll want to know a bit about search engine optimization (SEO).
SEO involves implementing strategies on your website so that it will appear higher up on a list of search results. It’s based on how search engines like Google use words on a web page to locate the content you’re searching for.
Some places to implement SEO are:
Title Tag: Text that appears in the tab when a page is open in a web browser.
Meta Title: This is the clickable link that appears in a search result.
Meta Description: Text that appears under the meta title in a web search.
You can also use software like Google Analytics to track the number of visitors to your site. Analytics can tell you what pages visitors are looking at, what links they are clicking on, and how long they are spending on your web page. And you can test out different title tags, headlines, etc. to see if it affects the traffic being driven to your page.
2) Concise Content Converts
Next time you’re on a webpage, consider how you’re reading it. It’s highly likely that you’re skimming the content, looking for key words and important points.
The reality is, most web users skim. They are generally not going to read dense paragraphs of text, as it is time consuming and they are eager to get at the facts.
The layout of your page is key for ensuring the content is read. Too many words and not enough spacing will give you low read and response rates.
Strong copy relies on brevity. Make your web copy concise, removing unnecessary words and breaking it up into short paragraphs. Start with a solid lead, the most compelling and interesting sentence, so that readers will want to continue down the rest of the page.
You should use headings and bullet points to make it easy for visitors to find the information they’re looking for as they’re skimming. And present key terms you know your audience is looking for in bold so they will stand out.
Also include links to other pages on your site that offer in-depth information. While you help grab a visitor’s attention with short copy, they will eventually want more information about a product or service you’re offering. Links will bring them directly to what they want to know. External links are also helpful, as they can bring credibility to your claims.
3) Speak to the “Experience”
Copywriting is all about selling an experience, and that’s critical to your web copy, too. You may be tempted to write copy that focuses on the intricacies of your company and its products/services, because it’s what you’re dealing with every day. However, your website should have an outward focus rather than an inward focus.
Why? Web users take between 10 and 20 seconds to decide whether or not to stay on a web page. That means you have to communicate value to them fast. Your prospect is searching for an answer to the question, “how will this site help me?” If they’re not finding answers right away, they’re going to look to another website, and another company, to solve their problem.
Make your copy about the prospect and the experience they are going to get from your product or service. Simply listing the features offered is not going to keep the reader’s attention in the same way as showing the value the product offers, how it will give the prospect what they want.
This is a great place to include a link to a separate page with more details about the features and benefits of the product. Once you’ve emotionally hooked the reader with your initial copy, they’ll be looking for more information to rationalize why your product is a good buy.
4) Know Your Audience
Any copy you write needs to be understood by your audience. Your website is no exception. When you know your prospects and can visualize who will be visiting your website, you can write web content with that demographic in mind. What words are they using? What ideas/concepts are important to them? And why are they searching for your product or service?
Most businesses use internal, industry-specific language to refer to their products and processes on a regular basis. It may be easy for you to talk and write about your company this way. But technical terms mean little to your audience. Think about the search terms your prospects will use to find your page. Incorporate that kind of language into your copy, rather than writing jargon-filled sentences that are likely to confuse and lose visitors.
You also connect with your audience better when you write like you talk. While keywords are an essential piece of driving traffic to your site, overusing them or using them in a manner that reads awkwardly will make prospects stop reading.
5) Always Include a Call to Action
While some of your web pages, like blog posts or an About Us section, are meant to inform, your website’s main function is to generate leads and sales. Every page that includes a product or service you are selling should include a call to action (CTA). You don’t want your prospects to read your web page passively. Instead, you want copy that intrigues them and language that compels them to take action and make a purchase.
You should also make it easy for the prospect to take the desired action. Create a button in a contrasting color with text like “Order Now” or “Learn More.” You can make the CTA more compelling by adding value—try “Order Now to save 20%” or “Get Your Sample in 24 Hours.” A CTA becomes stronger when your webpage includes testimonials and reviews, guarantees, and/or generates a sense of urgency (buy now or miss out!)
Lead generation is an important piece of marketing any business. And writing compelling copy is essential for connecting with prospects. The right copy with the right message behind it will give your marketing campaigns a significant edge over your competition.
Quick! Stop what you’re doing and watch this video!
Did it make you laugh? Every time I see this commercial, it makes me smile.
It’s probably true that all of us can use a good laugh. Humor is a big component of what makes many advertisements successful. It can strongly affect the way we connect with and respond to marketing messages.
A key concept of marketing today is to not just provide your customers with products or services, but to also serve as a knowledgeable source of information about anything and everything related to what your company does. When you provide customers with helpful info, it builds trust in your relationship with them and gives you greater credibility.
That seems great, right? So much so that you probably want to focus the bulk of your content development efforts on generating information that will be the most useful to readers and help them to best achieve whatever it is that they are trying to achieve with your guidance.
But helpful information isn’t the only way you can build trust in your brand. Humor is an extremely effective piece of content marketing. And if you aren’t making use of it, you should be.
3 Key Benefits of Humorous Marketing Content
Think of the person you know who’s most likely to be the class clown. Is it sometimes hard to take them seriously? Probably. One of the arguments against using humor in marketing is that it can cause you to lose credibility and seriousness in the eyes of your audience. If you lose those, your brand is in bad shape.
But guess what? This isn’t true, at least most of the time. Humor is not just a laugh as we skim through funny cat videos. Rather, humor creates a human connection.
Humor is a natural part of conversation. It has an impact on our emotions, bodies, and brains. When you use humor in your marketing, it gives your business a human side. You’re not just a faceless source of information. You’re a real person who understands the emotions and problems of your customers and can help to solve them.
Because humor is so impactful, it has significant influential power. We watch funny videos of cats or ridiculous comedy movies because they are an emotional distraction, helping us to reduce stress. Humor inspires a feel-good reaction. When you can make your customers laugh, it creates a connection between you and them. If you can make your audience feel less stressed, you are giving them the impression that your business can help to relieve their stress in relation to whatever services your company offers. You create a bond with them that makes your business more relatable.
Humor is also memorable and enhances learning. A study by Chegg, a textbook rental service, found that nearly 80% of college students remember ads that make them laugh. The basic purpose of an advertisement is to tell your audience who you are and what you do, while inspiring them to purchase your products or services. If your ad is memorable, it will stick in people’s minds. Though their brain is remembering the amusement they felt from viewing your ad, they will also remember what you’re offering. And they’ll be more likely to go to you for their future needs.
Think about the above Volkswagen video, or the last piece of funny content you saw. After you laughed at it, what did you want to do? Since humor is such a key part of our conversations, it’s likely that you wanted to share the laughs with someone.
Humor has been cited as the key reason why content goes viral. When your audience shares your content, they are increasing your brand awareness as well as the positive emotions they associate with your business. Humor can also catch people off guard, lowering their defenses and making them more receptive to your message.
So, to recap—3 benefits of humor are:
It creates a human connection between you and your audience.
Humor makes your advertisements and content more memorable.
Funny content is more likely to be shared, leading to greater brand awareness.
Your Sense of Humor = Your Brand
There are also three reasons why marketers are afraid to make humor a part of their content development strategy:
That fear of not being taken seriously
The humor could fall flat, and no one will find it funny
Humor can be offensive
While these are all valid concerns, instead of focusing on if you should use humor, consider how you will use it. Humor is a spectrum. No single tone or joke is going to be appropriate for all businesses and audiences. This is where you need to know your brand—the level of humor you use should align with your brand values. If you make use of humor that is visible and shocking but ultimately offensive to your audience, you are more likely to lose customers than to gain them.
Your demographic is key to determining what kind of humor fits your business. Funny content is more likely to be shared, but if you are sacrificing your reputation to reach a larger audience, you’re alienating the customers that feel loyalty to your brand.
So, how can you be funny?
Keep it Casual
You can adopt conversational humor by sprinkling it into your content in small doses. Maybe you use some irony or exaggeration in your blog post, or add a funny component to your next advertisement. I like this ad from Amazon:
Amazon has become a popular online retailer for a wide demographic. This ad is heartwarming and made me smile. And, you don’t lose sight of the ad’s message, which is the ease and speed of ordering from Amazon. At the same time, Amazon comes across as a fun company to do business with.
Just for Fun
Separate your more serious content with posts created just for laughs. Share a meme or video with the sole intent of putting a smile on your customer’s faces. You can relate them to your brand in some way, or they can be totally random.
Rock the Boat
Some brands have the flexibility to be edgy in their marketing, while others need to stick to tamer content. If you feel confident your audience would respond favorably to shocking content, go for it. Create an ad campaign that makes you stand out from competitors in your industry, and will get your audience talking.
The most important thing to remember with humor is to keep it simple. If your audience has to think too much about what you’re saying, they won’t be laughing, and you’ll lose the chance to make that powerful connection. But if you can get it right, a touch of humor could be just what your business needs to increase marketing success and develop a stronger relationship with your audience.
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We are surrounded by words. They are spoken to and by us, written to persuade us, intrigue us, and inform us. Words are a major way that we communicate. Putting words together in creative and compelling ways is a big part of what marketing is all about.
But not all words are created equal. It takes time to come up with just the right copy to convey the value your brand or organization has to offer and make the case for why you are the perfect fit for your audience. Words have power. When you find the right combination, your marketing strategy can shine.
So, what do you need to know to make your copy more compelling and ensure it is read?
1) A Personal Touch
Try addressing your marketing copy from one individual to one individual. If you’re writing a direct mail letter or sending a marketing email, you can send that piece from a specific member of your organization. This makes it more personal. Addressing your copy to an individual member of your audience will grab their attention and give a sense of added importance to the piece. The recipient will feel that the piece was intended for them specifically, rather than as one of many. They will be more likely to read your copy, get the message you want them to receive, and, hopefully, act on that message.
2) Place Your Audience at the Center
When crafting a piece of marketing content, you want your recipient to be at the center of the letter, not your business. This seems counter-intuitive, right? Isn’t the point of marketing to show the value of your company?
Yes…but you want to show your audience that you know who they are, that their individual needs and contributions are important, and that you can provide a relevant solution for them. This shows the value you have for your customers and gives them a reason to value you. Use words like “you” and “your” in your marketing material. Avoid using “we,” as it can work to separate your audience from you. Instead of “we improve children’s lives” try “you can improve children’s lives.” Which one encourages you to act?
Compelling copy will show your audience that you understand their needs and emotions and can address and solve those needs with your products or services. It may take more time to consider things from your customers’ standpoint. But it will pay off in the end when you’re able to connect with your audience on a deeper level.
Nonprofit copy shows the value of this. When it comes to communicating with donors, you want to empower them so that they feel their support is making a positive impact, and that their continued help will allow that positivity to continue. Using “you” gives them an active role in your mission, making them feel more connected and powerful. Show them they’re the superhero that’s saving your cause, and you’ll help to ensure their continued support.
When you give your recipients a sense that they can make a difference, you’re tapping into their emotions. Maybe your copy makes them laugh, feel sad enough to want to change something, or relieved that you can provide a long-awaited solution. The use of emotion is a powerful marketing tool. Whether you are looking for someone to donate to or purchase from you, they are compelled to act due to the emotional response your marketing gives them.
3) Grabbing Attention with Marketing Copy
Effective marketing copy stands out. Maybe it causes your audience to see things in a different light, or cites a surprising fact. It may seem like writing copy in the same way as everyone else is a safe bet for maintaining a conflict-free relationship with your audience. However, you shouldn’t be afraid to be edgy or striking in your marketing campaigns. You want your marketing, and by extension your business, to be remembered.
The best place to kick-start your unique copy style is in the headline. Media company Upworthy found that readership of an article can vary by 500 percent just from changing the headline. The first sentence of a piece is where you are going to either lose your reader or pique their interest, keeping them reading on. Your message will not be received if you don’t hook your reader in the headline.
4) Keeping it Simple
Interesting doesn’t have to mean long-winded. It certainly means cutting out exaggeration, overused words, or excessive business lingo. Don’t feel like you have to make your company or product sound extra impressive, using cliched words like “revolutionary” or “groundbreaking.” If you understand the needs of your audience and can speak to them using the same language they’re using to describe your business, you’ll be more effective. Choose the fewest words that are truly going to say the most, so that every word counts.
5) Style Choice
We all want to believe that our marketing copy is going to be read from beginning to end. But that is not often the case, at least at first. You should assume that pieces like your newsletters will only be scanned by recipients. This doesn’t mean your message will be lost. It means you have to make the most important information you want to convey the easiest to find. Recipients are most likely going to scan the headline, any photo captions, pull quotes, and bold or bulleted information. If you can make these parts intriguing, readers will go back and read more in order to dive into the context.
The most important takeaway about writing good copy? Make it count. The copy you produce is your main way of communicating with customers, both current and potential. If you want to be a successful marketer, you can’t afford to have bad copy.
What’s the most powerful and effective way to engage your clients and prospects in your marketing message? Speak to them one-on-one. Communicate in such a way that each person you mail to knows, or better yet feels that they are special to you; that you have something to say that they’ll be eager and enthusiastic to hear about.
One of the best ways to do so is by using one simple word… “You”.
The following real-life example and images are used to illustrate just how valuable it is to speak to your target audience when conveying your brand in your sales and marketing messaging.
And by “brand”, I don’t mean just the logo, which is only one graphical representation of your brand; but your BRAND – that special something about your company or organization that defines who you are, what you do, and how you do it. It’s what attracts customers to your company, converts them to customers, and prompts them to spread the word.
I’m a car guy. I am a big fan of sports and performance cars, both vintage and new. Back in the day, I drove a bright yellow 1973 Triumph Spitfire; one of those teeny-tiny British 2-seat roadsters that helped define the classic wind in your hair (when I used to have some) description of top-down motoring. To this day I’m still an enthusiast and enjoy driving cars for more than mere transportation. My current Audi has a manual transmission with a stick shift that for me, is simply fun!
So when this mailer arrived in my mailbox from Berlin City, the local Alfa Romeo dealership for this Italian car manufacturer’s reintroduction into the US market, they had done their homework by identifying me as a member of their target audience – someone with an interest in fun sporty cars.
Let’s breakdown this mailer…
First, the iconic Alfa logo and branding is front and center on the outside of the mail piece. They don’t design logos like this much anymore.
I turn the piece over to find the headline at the top that reads:
YOU ARE INVITED TO EXPERIENCE THE ALL NEW 2017 ALFA ROMEO GIULIA.
This could have easily been written to read: CHECK OUT THE ALL NEW 2017 ALFA ROMEO GIULIA INSIDE; and while I still would have been curious, the actual headline speaks to me by using the word “YOU”.
They also used another very powerful word in this headline… EXPERIENCE. Let’s face it, the fundamental function of a car is transportation; carrying people and things from point A to point B. Any car can do that and for many people, that’s all they need, want, or expect out of a car. But for the driver of a hot Italian red car like this, the point, or more aptly the unique selling proposition, shifts from utility to emotion, and the experience you see, hear, and feel when behind the wheel of this automobile.
Next, I open the mailer and the very first thing I notice are the letters VIP – with the “V” creatively crafted using the V-shape of the Giulia’s classic signature Alfa Romeo front grille.
We’ve been trained through language and marketing to put a high value on the letters VIP, and it works every time. Then, right below the VIP is the coupes de grace… the Call-to-Action – Schedule your personal Test Drive Experience, employing an equally influencial derivative of the word “you”… “your”.
Yes, there’s more throughout the mailer that visually shows off the car, along with an attractive lease offer, but the REAL call-to-action is the invitation to experience driving this car; because Alfa Romeo and the dealership are pretty confident that once driven, the sales process gets much easier from there.
People buy on emotion
So THIS is a great example of the power and attraction that direct mail has and will continue to have so long as marketers know how to use it and apply direct mail marketing’s three fundamental best practices:
Know your target audience and focus your time and budget on them
Include a compelling offer that speaks to the person and evokes emotion
Design the mail piece to be relevant and attractive to the target audience; integrating personalization and the word “you” whenever appropriate.
For the best experience and results for your direct marketing projects, Contact Paw Print & Mail to discuss your objectives and needs with us.
So you’re eager and ready buy that new range for your kitchen. Or hire a photographer for your wedding. Or you’re in the market for a new SUV. Or want to know where the best Thai food in town is. If you’re like most people, what’s one of the steps you take before plunking down your hard-earned cash?
Read a review
As a consumer, when looking to buy something your decision is most likely influenced by reading reviews, especially as the price tag rises. EBay was one of the pioneers to implement an online review-based transaction process that turned out to be brilliant yet simple, and the foundation to their sustainability after all these years. Maintaining a positive review score encourages the buyer to give preference to those that rate high, while motivating the seller to do what’s necessary to please the buyer and earn a positive review. Simple, efficient, and generally very reliable.
How often do we see and hear the word value or phrase delivering value when reading or discussing what makes a business successful, success that’s not differentiated solely on price. It’s easy for a seller to “say” they deliver value, because it’s one of the right things to say when in front of a potential customer, but it’s quite another to actually deliver value, which can be measured in so many different ways. What’s perceived as value to one may not be considered value to another. In today’s marketplace, where the customer possesses virtually all the power, especially in an online marketplace, identifying and delivering value to a wide array of customers can be tricky and perplexing.
Enter the review
Customer reviews are the great equalizer in the marketplace. For the buyer they build confidence in the purchase decision, provide peer feedback data, and move them along the buying cycle. For the seller, reviews help get inside the customers’ head, they can (should) cause a business to level-up their game, and they can help to define what value means to the customer. Reviews can also result in a learning, if not humbling, experience.
About five years ago I was introduced to a simple and easy to use automated online survey service for Paw Print & Mail made available to me through one of my trade groups. The service, provided by Survey Advantage, has turned out to be one of the most valuable tools I’ve ever implemented over my 26 years in business. Not only has this tool influenced my sales and marketing efforts, but also my customer service standards; which in turn comes back around to influence sales. Do good work, earn good reviews, and build more sales. Repeat, then repeat again, and again. I call it the circle of business life!
But if you choose to solicit reviews, be prepared for a little surprise, if not disappointment, now and then. Sorry to break the news but life isn’t perfect and sooner or later, no matter how hard you try to please, a sour review will come along. Maybe you really screwed up an order, or maybe it’s not a screw up at all but a miscommunication or perception that has influenced the bad review; but that’s the checks-and-balance part of the equation and the part that makes you better, if you care and pay attention.
The key to handling a poor review is to respond immediately, clearly understand the nature of the complaint, ask what it would take to fix the problem, then do the right thing.
Reviews keep sellers honest and on their A-game when done well and implemented as part of a strategic marketing plan. Great for SEO ranking too!
Looking to grow and generate more leads for your business? Take a look at the following statistics to better understand the full potential of making and managing reviews for your business or organization.
50 stats that show the importance of online reviews
92% of consumers now read online reviews vs. 88% in 2014
40% of consumers form an opinion by reading just one to three reviews vs. 29% in 2014
Star rating is the number one factor used by consumers to judge a business
44% say a review must be written within one month to be relevant.This highlights the importance of recency in reviews!
68% say positive reviews make them trust a local business more vs. 72% in 2014
43% of consumers search a business by reviews at least one time per month vs. 38% in 2014
60% of consumers have searched a business at least six times per year vs. 56% in 2014
There has been a considerable decrease in those that “never” search for a local business online, down from 22% to 9%, and an increase in those that search for a local business every day, up from 7% to 14%
73% have read online reviews on a desktop
29% have read reviews on a tablet
33% believe all local businesses should have websites designed for mobile vs. 25% in 2013
61% are more likely to contact a local business if they have a mobile optimized site
40% of consumers form an opinion by reading one to three reviews, vs. 29% in 2014
73% of consumers form an opinion by reading up to six reviews ,vs. 64% in 2014
88% of consumers form an opinion by reading up to ten reviews vs. 84% in 2014. This means it’s important to have a large body of reviews, as customers are reading more reviews now than in all years past.
Only 12% are prepared to read more than 10 reviews vs. 16% in 2014
26% of consumers say it’s important that a local business responds to its reviews
Only 14% of consumers would consider using a business with a one or two star rating
57% of consumers would use a business with a three star rating
94% of consumers would use a business with a four star rating
51% of consumers will select a local business if it has positive reviews
88% trust reviews as much as personal recommendations, vs. 83% in 2014
48% will visit a company’s website after reading positive reviews
23% will visit the business premises directly after reading positive reviews
9% of consumers will phone a business after reading positive reviews
95% of consumers suspect censorship or faked reviews when they don’t see bad scores
Reliability (27%), expertise (21%) and professionalism (18%) remain the most important attributes to consumers
More consumers are interested in “good value” than before, while less are concerned about the “expertise” of a business
Word of mouth is still the most popular method of recommendation for consumers despite a 2% drop year over year
On average, a consumer will look at over 10 information sources before making a purchase
Over half of young people aged 18 to 34 say they trust online reviews more than the opinions of friends and family
88% of online shoppers incorporate reviews into their purchase decision
Consumers who read reviews on a smartphone are 127% more likely to buy than those who read reviews on desktops
Reviews are especially important for local searches as they influence up to 10% of the ranking
Only reviews from friends and family are trusted more than online reviews. Reviews from experts and celebrity endorsements are less trusted than online reviews
30% of consumers assume online reviews are fake if there are no negative reviews
The three online platforms dedicated to reviews with the most global traffic are: yelp, tripadvisor, foursquare
58% of consumers said they have recently (within the past five years) began leaving more and more online reviews based upon customer service
100% of customers who make over $150,000 annually claim to leave reviews when it comes to a poor customer service experience
Reviews of 50 or more, per product can mean a 4.6% increase in conversion rates
63% of customers are more likely to make a purchase from a site which has user reviews
105% customers are more likely to purchase while visiting, when site visitors interact with both reviews and customer questions and answers, and spend 11% more than visitors who don’t interact
Reviews produce an average of 18% uplift in sales
64% of consumers would read online reviews when purchasing technology items
68% of consumers trust reviews more when they see both good and bad scores
Between one and three bad online reviews would be enough to deter the majority (67%) of shoppers from purchasing a product or service
86% of people will hesitate to purchase from a business that has negative online reviews
Number of reviews posted every minute by Yelp users is 26,380
If a business resolves its issue quickly and efficiently, 95% of unhappy customers returns back to your business
38% have read online reviews on mobile internet vs 24% on a mobile app