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Social Proof Examples from Clarins, Miracle Brand, and More [Video+Transcript]

We’re lifting the lid on conversion optimization with our brand new eCommerce Under the MiCROscope series.

The first episode is dedicated to a popular marketing tactic: social proof. Our conversion expert Théo Devred is going to dissect five eCommerce websites, including beauty brand Clarins, camping holidays website Homair, and bedding manufacturer Miracle Brand, looking for best social proof examples, mistakes, and untapped potential.

Watch the full episode on social proof:

Read the episode transcript below:

Introduction

[00:03:37.530] 

…Without further ado, let’s get on with what we’re talking about today, which is social proof. I am very excited to welcome Théo, our senior consultant, who is going to be doing all of the deep-diving into our websites today. Hi, Theo. How are you?

[00:04:03.390] 

I’m doing really well, thanks.

Good stuff. So tell the nice people about your journey so far through Yieldify and why you’re here today.

Yeah, sure. So I’m – as some of you guys might have noticed already from my little accent – French currently based in Singapore, where it’s 10:30 PM, and essentially to give you guys a bit of background, I started working for Yieldify almost four years ago in the London office. Started as an analyst working mainly French and UK clients in the retail and travel verticals.

And then last year, back in June, I moved to Singapore to build and grow the services team here to better support our clients in the Southeast Asian region and in the broader region as well. And just really excited to be having a chat with you about social proof today.

[00:05:00.810] 

Fabulous. Well, thank you so much for joining us. I know that you spend basically eight or nine hours a day analyzing websites. I’m glad that we can extend this to 10.30pm for you as well! OK, so so let’s get started, shall we? What’s the first website that we’re going to look at today?

[00:05:17.250] 

Yeah, so the first website we’re going to look at is Clarins Australia. But actually, before diving into that first website, I just wanted to give you guys a quick reminder of how we define social proof.

Social proof examples - Clarins Australia
Clarins Australia homepage

I’m pretty sure most of you guys here are familiar with the concept, but essentially we define social proof as the influence of other people’s behavior when we need to make a decision. And social proof in marketing is about leveraging that behavior to drive FOMO, urgency, popularity, and trust with your potential clients, and ultimately drive more sales and conversions.

[00:05:57.480] 

There are plenty of ways to leverage social proof, and it’s considered to be a very effective means to drive conversions overall in the digital marketing space. And this is why we’re here today.

Obviously, just want to kind of run you guys through a few websites, but essentially share some thoughts and feedback on some social proof related content we see across these websites and hopefully some actionable tips and recommendations that some of you guys will be able to apply on your own website or for your own use cases.

[00:06:31.320] 

Now, let me jump into the first website. So the reason why we chose Clarins Australia, this is one of our clients, but I personally think they are doing some very interesting stuff when it comes to social proof on product pages, mainly focused on driving mid-funnel urgency. And this is what we’re going to look at right now.

[00:07:04.530] 

So I’m currently on the home page and this is me live on their website right now. And what I’m going to do is just jump on one of their product pages. So if I jump on one, one of their best sellers, which is a Double Serum product page, this is what their page looks like when landing on it.

Social proof examples - Clarins Australia
Clarins Australia product page

Just going to wait a few seconds for everything to load. Essentially, there are four different types of social proof examples on that page that I want to highlight to you guys.

The first one, which is quite obvious, which you can see on the bottom left corner of the website and which has just disappeared, is a notification highlighting the number of users the product has had in the past 24 hours.

Real-time social proof example - Clarins
Clarins Australia – Real-time social proof

[00:07:49.090] 

You can see that it’s already faded out, which is quite nice because it’s caught the eye as soon as the user has landed on that product page. But at the same time, it’s not too intrusive. And now the user can focus on some more important stuff around the product.

Now, what I want to highlight around this type of tactic is that obviously back a few years ago, this has become pretty famous and standard in the travel vertical with the likes of Booking.com and other similar types of websites.

[00:08:18.190] 

In retail, it kind of followed. And this is actually something that works pretty well. There’s plenty of things that can be tested around those kinds of tactics. But essentially, to give you a few tips, it’s very interesting to try to test different types of time frames.

So you’ve seen that message. It was around a number of orders in the past 24 hours, but it might be worth testing the number of users in the past hour or the number of users right now on the product.

[00:08:50.920] 

Obviously, this will depend on the level of traffic a website has. But this is quite interesting. And obviously one thing to bear in mind is that the wider the time range, the higher the number. But at the same time, the shorter the time range, the closer we are to the notion of real-time social proof, which might be appealing to users.

So for those kinds of tactics, I think what’s interesting is really about testing and finding the right balance between having a number which is high enough to be appealing to users, but which is still related to a notion of real-time.

[00:09:29.500] 

The second tactic I wanted to highlight here, which is also pretty common and pretty standard nowadays when we look at e-commerce websites, is those number of reviews, plus the actual ratings that we can see on the product name.

So if I click on there, it’s going to drive me further down on the page and share with me all the details of different testimonials and feedbacks that some clients have had.

Social proof examples - customer reviews
Clarins Australia – Customer reviews

[00:10:06.370] 

I think some of that information is pretty interesting because, first of all, we can see here that actually Clarins replies to some of those posts, which is not the case with every e-commerce website. And I think that kind of creates interesting proximity between the brand and the existing clients.

[00:10:41.980] 

The second thing I did want to highlight here is a testimonial, which I found very valuable in the sense that there’s a lot of information here.

Social proof examples - testimonial
Clarins Australia – Testimonials

First of all, there’s quite a lot of information on who that person is, gender, age, a skin type, which can be extremely valuable when it comes to beauty products. And then there’s also images which have been uploaded.

I think this really personalizes and humanizes the experience and that feedback, which at the end of the day is a great way to provide social proof and give reasons for users to actually buy those types of products.

[00:11:21.580] 

The third tactic here, which is very interesting, too, and it’s actually quite rare, is that bottom right chat feature with which you can see. Now, the reason why I want to highlight this is because it is not a standard chat feature where you just have a chat with the customer service.

If you click on it, you can see that in reality, you’re going to chat with the community and that’s other users navigating on the website, other clients navigating on the website.

Social proof examples - live chat
Clarins Australia – Community chat

[00:11:59.950] 

I can ask any question. It’s those users that are going to reply to my question, and I can even answer some of the questions from other users. So to be completely honest, I don’t know if that’s a strong revenue driver, if that’s a strong conversion driver, I’m not sure how other users’ feedback is, I mean, whether other users’ feedback is more valuable than feedback from an expert, from the customer service of Clarins. But I still believe that from a transparency perspective, it’s very interesting and there’s nothing like having your your your own users openly and transparency, sharing thoughts on whatever they want.

[00:12:49.490] 

So that’s, I think, really interesting. And I’d be keen to have a chat with the Clarins team just to understand as well in terms of potential filters or control on these questions and answers what the rules are because this is pretty new and I think it’s really interesting.

[00:13:30.800] 

And the fourth tactic I wanted to highlight is Olapic content. So that’s essentially sharing some Instagram posts, which, as you can see here, is related to the exact product we are looking at.

Social proof examples - user generated content
Clarins Australia – User generated content

So it makes it very relevant. And we all know how user-generated content (UGC) content is important. It makes the experience a bit more relatable, visual. And this is definitely something that will drive users to engage a bit more with that agent and the content and ultimately potentially give them more reasons to convert. So, yeah, that’s it for these guys in terms of tactics I found interesting and all very different with different objectives, obviously there’s a bit more, but the idea was just to focus on a few.

[00:14:08.830] 

Not sure if you have any questions.

I do. There is a lot going on on this site in terms of social proof examples. And that chat functionality is really interesting, is something that is, you know, community-driven. And, you know, you think about Clarins, there’s a brand that is in this case, going direct to consumer. And a big part of what they’ve got to do is build an experience. And a community is a big part of that. So that’s super interesting.

But actually, I want to ask you about the UGC stuff in particular, because this is something that we see a lot in sort of beauty and fashion in particular, but it’s probably a newer form of social proof, whereas we think of traditional forms of social proof as needing reviews and star ratings and fussbudget. Do you think UGC is as effective as those traditional forms we mentioned?

[00:15:01.020] 

Yeah, that’s a really good question. And I would say yes, I think so. Which doesn’t mean you shouldn’t keep on using more traditional tactics, as you say. People today, I’m sure we can all agree on that are far more likely to trust a recommendation that comes from other people over branded content. And I think this is all this is what UGC is all about.

[00:15:31.620] 

It’s all about putting the customer at the center in front of the websites. And this is what also from a brand perspective really creates authenticity and transparency. UGC is broad and I think different types of tactics around UGC might work better for fashion, while others might work better for beauty.

[00:16:22.300] 

If we look at a beauty brand, I do agree the photos are powerful, but I think as well that there’s plenty of information that you can get through testimonials and feedback of other clients, that you don’t necessarily get through the photo when it comes to beauty products.

On that note, we’ve spoken about UGC as something that gets used a lot within fashion and beauty, and this is where it seems to be mostly adopted. But do you think there are other verticals or other sectors that could or should be making better use of UGC?

Yes, I mean I mean, every sector should be using UGC. I mean, I don’t have any specific example in mind. Obviously, they need to adapt and not every single type of content is going to work for every sector.

But if you look at insurance or finance websites, I don’t think something like that would be valuable at all. Like, there’s nothing from social proof that would really push users to actually convert and give them reasons to make a purchase from that perspective. However, for these type of websites, I think testimonials and other people’s thoughts is extremely valuable and probably even more valuable than on beauty or fashion websites.

[00:17:55.160] 

Yeah, interesting stuff coming through on the chat as well about the use of UGC. And I think that Shari saying that this is something that could be particularly powerful for newer and smaller brands as well, which I think would make a lot of sense just from a wider marketing perspective. If your customers are generating content for you, it’s a very cost-effective way to generate content.

[00:18:26.030] 

We’ve gone through one website. They’ve got a hell of a lot of social proof going on. I think we should move on to our next one now. So I think we’ve got something quite different. What have we got coming up, Theo?

[00:18:37.370] 

Yeah, just give me a few seconds that I can share my screen again. This is the technical fun part, of course. And yeah, so can you see my screen?

[00:18:54.980] 

We can indeed.

The next website we wanted to analyze is Best Price Nutrition. So this is essentially an online retailer that sells products around bodybuilding and workouts. And we don’t work with these guys. But I know they have submitted their website so that we could review and get some feedback. So here we are.

Best Price Nutrition homepage
Best Price Nutrition homepage

And I found this website pretty interesting for one specific reason. They are using social proof across the whole customer journey, which is quite interesting in the sense that we tend to focus mainly on mid-funnel urgency when it comes to social proof.

[00:19:37.610] 

So mainly on product pages, sometimes on category pages. But I do think there are other interesting use cases when it comes to stages earlier in the journey as well as stages later in the day.

So I’m currently on the homepage and obviously we can consider that when a user arrives on the homepage, he’s in a kind of discovery mode. He hasn’t shown any sign of engagement yet. And this is where brands, in my opinion, need to focus on building awareness on the different types of products they are selling, but also educating their users on their own brand, the values they have, etc.

[00:20:18.430] 

So I’m currently on the homepage scrolling down. And what we can see here is what looks like social proof of existing customers. In terms of feedback, it’s pretty good. It’s very relevant.

Social proof examples - customer photos
Best Price Nutrition – Customer photos

One thing I would highlight here, and I don’t know if it’s the case or not, but this kind of content is interesting if it is uploaded on a regular basis. If I come back on the website as a random user in a couple of weeks and I still see the same photos, my feeling might be that actually there’s not that much that customers can say about the brand and therefore we’re sticking with the same images.

[00:21:07.460] 

So I really don’t know if it’s the case or not, but that would be my piece of recommendation here when it comes to that type of content.

And then the second point I wanted to mention on that specific step is those Trustpilot reviews. I think this is very good. These guys have excellent reviews. As you can see, on the left, they’ve got around four point five stars out of five, which is great. And they are sharing three testimonials here, which are generic testimonials, not necessarily focusing on one specific product, but focusing on the brand in general.

Social proof examples - Trustpilot reviews
Best Price Nutrition – Trustpilot reviews

[00:21:48.200] 

This is extremely valuable, whether you’ve seen how I had to scroll down the page to actually reach its contents, I’m pretty sure 90% of users on the home page don’t scroll down to that level and miss that type of content, which is extremely valuable. So if I had to give another tip here, I just recommend having that banner in the middle of those products, for instance, just to make sure I get the exposure it deserves.

[00:22:19.670] 

And I’m sure that would drive awareness and push some users to actually go further down in the funnel. So that was it for the homepage.

Now, if I go a bit further into the kind of customer journey I’m going to navigate to a product page. And we’ll see what these guys have here, but I know there are a few interesting things already. So same here, let’s wait for it to load completely. So the first thing we can see here, which is quite obvious, is the number of reviews. OK, I’m not going to repeat myself in terms of reviews.

[00:23:12.460] 

One thing I did notice, though, is that when you click on it, it actually drives to those same Trustpilot reviews that I mentioned a few minutes ago. Now, these are quite generic and they’re not related to that specific product, which should be the information users are looking for at that stage.

Social proof examples - reviews
Best Price Nutrition product page

So if we scroll down a bit further, we actually reach that level where we’ve got reviews and testimonials related to that specific product. That’s good.

[00:23:43.600] 

I just think having both might be a bit confusing for the user, especially having the generic one before. So in that specific scenario on product pages, we’re looking at users who are starting to consider a purchase, who are showing a certain interest in a specific product. We need to share with you focusing on a specific product.

And then if I go back up. another type of social proof example here is the number of products that have been sold, that is interesting.

[00:24:18.100] 

And that could be far more interesting in my opinion if we are giving a range because I’ll be a bit extreme here. But if that’s the number of products that have been sold in the past week, let’s say, then this is amazing and they should really be shouting about it. Now, if that’s the number of products that have been sold in the past 20 years, for example, then obviously it’s not the same ratio. And currently, with that piece of information, I’m not too sure what it actually means.

[00:24:50.770] 

And I don’t think it drives as much of value as it could from a social perspective. And so I actually want to go back to one of the things that you said a little bit earlier.

I want to talk about Trustpilot, because this is one of that kind of trust badges that I guess a lot of us would associate with social proof, and that’s been around for a while now. Do you think they’re as effective as they used to be when people first started using them, like five years ago?

[00:25:23.040] 

Definitely, and I think they are more relevant right now than five years ago because Trustpilot has become more famous today than five years ago. It’s very well known. There’s not only Trustpilot, but there are also a few other similar trust badges that exist today. But I’d say there are four or five in the industry that are considered standard now. And I think actually a user that doesn’t have a website that doesn’t have any of those is probably missing out on an opportunity.

[00:25:58.950] 

Another thing I would highlight is the fact that those trust badges stay genuine in the sense that there are websites that are working with Trustpilot, which have Trustpilot reviews. But these are not that good in terms of rating. And I think this makes it credible in the sense that if everyone had amazing Trustpilot reviews, obviously it would make the thing far less credible.

[00:26:39.380] 

Let me jump to the last step I wanted to kind of highlight with these guys. Just to kind of highlight the overall journey, so I’m now adding a product to cart and I’m on the cart page, and they have your Trustpilot reviews here again.

Social proof examples - shopping cart
Best Price Nutrition shopping cart

Now, the point I want to highlight here is it’s not about the reviews, it’s about the fact that we too often assume that content, which has been shared earlier in the journey, has been consumed and digested by users.

[00:27:30.830] 

It’s not the case. We’ve all seen those heatmaps highlighting the movements of users. And we’ve all seen actually quite a lot of content is not even looked at by users. And this is what I want to highlight here. We tend to forget that.

And on the cart page, which is essential and probably the most important step of an overall e-commerce website, highlighting some of your cool brand USPs, whether it is reviews like those which are great or other USPs of your brand, it is important to highlight them.

Even though you have highlighted on your own page on some of your product pages, it’s very likely that users will not necessarily have noticed. So that’s the point I kind of wanted to highlight here.

[00:28:25.100] 

Yeah, it makes a lot of sense. And, you know, I think what we’re continuing to see here is the different forms of social proof you need at different stages of the funnel. But there are no hard and fast rules perhaps when it comes to that.

OK, so shall we move on to our next website, because it is once again super different from the two we’ve seen before.

[00:29:17.370] 

Yeah, so Homair is a French company based in the south of France and these guys are essentially selling camping holidays across Europe. We do work with them today. And I was working very closely with these guys back a few years ago when I was still in London.

And the reason why we have we have these guys on the screen is because they have been doing lots of interesting things in the past few years around social proof, around highlighting reviews.

Yieldify x Homair case study
Check out the Yieldify x Homair case study!

[00:29:51.420] 

So, yeah, I just thought it was interesting to kind of highlight some of these. So I’m on the homepage here just navigating to one of their destination holidays. And obviously we can see here that they’ve got those reviews and those ratings.

Social proof examples - Homair
Homair destination page

We can also see that they are driving users to their Facebook page and and and also sharing the number of likes they have on Facebook, which is another way to kind of prove that you are quite strong from a social perspective.

[00:30:30.390] 

And the other thing I would highlight currency in the context of COVID-19 that we can see it’s not really social proof related, but these guys have notifications which are really focused on building reassurance.

Obviously it’s in French. So I suppose most of you guys can’t read it. But it’s pretty straightforward in the sense that it’s highlighting some guarantees and just creating strong reassurance to users in regards to the actual content.

Social proof examples - COVID-19 notification
Homair – COVID-19 notification

[00:31:04.470] 

There’s a small notification I wanted to highlight. It’s not there. And I’m pretty sure this is because it’s something that is currently being tested against the control group. It was a message essentially saying that people have looked up for this specific destination and those specific dates, which I think is a good tactic in the sense that you’re not just focusing on the destination, you’re also focusing on the actual dates, which should make it appealing for users.

Definitely. And I mean, I’m going to jump in because this obviously a marvellous excuse for us to talk about COVID being in this section about travel and obviously social proof historically is all about showing that something is popular and busy. Has COVID sort of changed the way that we do that, as far as you can see so far?

[00:31:56.840] 

So I don’t know if it has yet, but it will for sure and it should definitely and I think that’s a great question. The way we’ve been using social proof in the past and today with the context, it could actually have had the opposite effect.

If you’re highlighting to a user that there are only two bungalows left on that specific destination for that specific time frame, you’re essentially telling the user that these days will be very crowded.

[00:32:35.420] 

And I’m not sure whether today this is what people desire and want to hear. And I think that could be actually like pushing it a bit further. It could be interesting to use social proof the other way round and potentially focus on those destinations, those products, those trips which are less popular and maybe have just text messages highlighting the fact that this destination is less locked up or there is still a lot of free space in that destination, because today, as you just mentioned, that’s probably what users are looking for.

[00:33:19.140] 

And I’ll say I was going to go in and ask you about, like the retail side of that as well, because one of the things, I guess, that we’ve seen a lot in social proof previously is implying that products are going to run out or that there’s scarcity around something because it’s so popular, whereas the challenge of COVID kind of reversed that, where the inventory levels are low and a lot of products are out of stock. And that’s a turnoff.

[00:33:45.560] 

And do you think you see the impact on retailers’ use of social proof like that?

Yeah, I think it’s the same in the sense that, as you say, the focus for retail brands right now is probably to reassure users about the fact that even if something is low in stock or out of stock, it will come back very soon and stuff like that.

It’s really focusing on reassurance and being as clear as possible in projections and stuff like that with your users. While in the past, stocks would probably be more used to, as you say, create scarcity and just drive more sales.

[00:34:24.720] 

So I totally agree with your points. And I just want to jump back on your first question. That’s just looking at this specific photo. Yeah, I think it’s interesting because it reminds me of a test we did with Homair back a few years ago when it was live in a few countries.

One thing we wanted to understand is how appealing different types of images were to different types of audiences. So we tested images with people in there like that image in the swimming pool, swimming pool versus images of nature and something which is far more orientated around nature on both the French and the German website.

[00:35:14.880] 

And what we had noticed at the time is that French users would actually engage more with images that had people in it, while German people would actually engage more with images that had nature in it and fewer people.

That’s just a good example of how we can test everything and have a simple image can be can resonate differently to different audiences. And so to get back to your question with COVID is an image of a swimming pool with 30 people there – is that what people want to see? Maybe not. I don’t know if that’s something that has been considered yet, or if that’s something they’re going to test or not, I’d be very keen to know what the results say if they do so.

[00:36:07.200] 

Absolutely. It’s a great test. And I would also love to know if you’d run a test for UK visitors, whether we just respond to pictures of pints in warm weather. So our producers were telling us that we need to move on to the next website. Let’s go. We’re going back to retail for this one, is that right?

[00:36:32.790] 

That’s right. OK, another very different one. I’m excited about this one.

So Bloody Toe who I believe has dialled in. I think they’re online. So hello to you guys. If you’re there, I hope you’re watching carefully. So Theo, tell us a little bit more about this site.

Hi, guys. Yeah, so I found that site really cool. So as you guys can probably see, these guys are selling products which are related to music and with designs, which we can name as very joyful and colorful.

[00:37:24.830] 

What I found interesting with that website in terms of social proof is that small notification that you guys can see popping up on the bottom left off of the screen.

Real-time social proof
Bloody Toe – Social proof notification

Essentially, this is a kind of alternative to some other social proof notifications we’ve shown already. So here, as you can see, it’s saying that Geffray from Indianapolis has just bought a cap and it’s showing the image of that specific cap.

[00:37:57.230] 

I think this is nice in the sense that it has an image with the name of the region. It kind of personalizes the journey. Now, I do have a few recommendations here.

First of all, on the frequency of triggering, like I’ve just spoken for one minute and it’s probably triggered six or seven times, which I think is a bit too much and might be a bit too intrusive for users when they are navigating on the website.

[00:38:32.730] 

We’ve done some similar tests with other types of social proof notifications with other clients. One of them that comes to my mind is a travel client in the UK. And what we realized is that when we were showing three of those types of notifications in a row on different product pages, it was driving a lot of value. But after that, the impact on conversion was actually decreasing. And actually, after six triggers in the same session, it even became negative, meaning it was too much.

[00:39:07.590] 

It was detrimental to the experience and it was probably frustrating a couple of users that were sick of seeing that notification too regularly. That’s one example, which doesn’t mean at all that it’s the case for this website or for other websites.

But yeah, that was my first thought when seeing those notifications trigger and saying, I understand that this is a small website. So I don’t know what the level of traffic is, what can be done with the different audiences, but maybe instead of triggering it straight away on the homepage, maybe triggering it a bit further down in the journey based on how users have actually behaved.

[00:39:48.120] 

So if users have actually navigated to a specific category, then it could make sense to show indication of someone who bought one product from that category or one similar type of product as a t-shirt or something else. I’m not sure that’s just ideas, but I think being a bit more relevant in that sense could be interesting as well for these guys.

Yeah, I mean, you’ve pre-empted my question, which was kind of, you know, how much social proof is too much? Like is there an actual ceiling on this?

[00:40:23.360] 

Another example that I find very interesting is the analysis we did with another client in the UK that is selling bathrooms. Social proof was not performing that well. So we decided to actually look at the performance of that notification per hour of days. And one thing we noticed is that the social proof messaging was not performing well in the morning, not performing well in the afternoon, but it was performing well between 11:00 and 1:00 PM and then after six or seven p.m. in the evening.

[00:41:09.890] 

And the reasoning behind that when thinking about it was that the user is just not in the right mindset in the morning, is probably browsing or is probably at work, just kind of getting some information on some products. But he’s not in a purchasing mindset while over lunchtime he probably has more time to actually proceed to his purchase. And same in the evening, once he’s had dinner, he’s on his desktop. He’s probably likely to buy and convert.

[00:41:40.190] 

And this is where those types of notifications can have a stronger impact. So all this to say that there’s plenty of variables that have to be taken into account. But, yeah, it makes the whole thing very interesting and very different for every single website.

Absolutely, and I suppose that that kind of segues us onto our fifth and final website, which we’re going to look at very quickly because on that we’ve got a different form of social proof once again, which is kind of being used at an entirely different part of the funnel as well.

[00:42:14.820] 

So I think we are looking at Miracle Brand. Which is, as we can always tell from the website design, part of the wave of sexy D2C companies that have sprung up. And, you know, it has a look and feel of a Leesa Sleep or Simba mattress. So, yeah, tell us a little bit about how they’re using social proof.

Yeah, I guess what’s interesting with these guys and slightly different from the other examples we shared is that banner which appeared straight on the homepage where they are showing some critiques or reviews from famous media.

Social proof examples - media coverage
Miracle Brand – Media coverage

[00:43:01.720] 

In a way, I think this is probably one of the oldest versions of social proof that was used a lot back a few decades ago. But I do personally think that for smaller websites that are looking to get a bit more famous and well known, having these kinds of elements of social proof is relevant and makes a lot of sense.

[00:43:34.640] 

It will build awareness and trust in users who have never heard of that brand. And what I would add here is that obviously you need to have media which is relevant and which your target audience knows.

Myself, I know the two media is on the right, Business Insider and The Huffington Post. The others I don’t know. The two are the ones that might be because I’m French. That might be because I’m not lacking a bit of culture here anyway. All this to say that it’s those two media on the right that will catch my eye. If I didn’t know any of them, it would probably have no impact.

[00:44:07.570] 

Yeah, I mean, that’s interesting because like you said, this is the oldest form of social proof in many ways. And with the rise of many other forms and social media among them, it seems a little bit like using traditional media is kind of in decline for a lot of retailers.

[00:44:35.830] 

Would you agree? Well. Yes, I totally agree.

Do you think it’s still as powerful as it used to be, like 20 years ago?

No, probably not, but I think so for big brands, I don’t think this has any value and none of these guys have that kind of elements on their websites. Yeah, but that’s just because these guys don’t need the smaller brands. I do think it still adds value.

[00:45:05.950] 

It’s probably not as powerful as it used to be 20 years ago. Yeah, that’s just my thoughts, to be honest. And here again, it would be interesting to test, just to understand from a data perspective whether what I’m saying right now is true or not.

[00:45:24.340] 

It is super interesting because like when you think about the sort of principles of persuasion and going back to sort of the behavioral economics side, what those logos have is authority.

What a lot of the other social proof examples don’t have is the authority in that sort of way. And you will probably recognize that authority less these days than we did before. We have more voices to listen to. So we don’t necessarily need to go to the people who we think know the answers.

Questions and answers

1. How to handle a negative review if you get one?

That’s a good question and well, I would say that I personally like bad reviews for two main reasons. The first one, it reinforces credibility and trust. If you go on the website that has all their products with 4.8 star rating out of 5, that’s something you will notice very easily. And it’s a bit hard to believe. And I think I think, therefore, those kinds of websites actually lose on the impact they could have through those reviews.

So I think in a way, bad reviews make good reviews look even better if you see what I mean. Bad reviews are also a good opportunity to to to show your level of customer service. If you reply to that approach, to that review on the website, it shows that you are considering what the client has to say, that you’re taking care of them.

It might be appealing to other users, other clients. And for those reasons, I would say that clients’ websites shouldn’t hide bad reviews. It’s part of the game and it’s definitely what we need if we want to build trust with the users.

2. How to collect more reviews?

Yeah, that’s a good question, too. So I would say, and actually that kind of relates to a personal example I have from a couple of weeks ago, I think the most important thing here is the timing, not necessarily the means of doing it.

Two weeks ago, I made a purchase and I received an email asking for feedback about my product before I even received it. That’s really frustrating from the user journey perspective. So I think this is actually really important.

Websites need to think about the delivery delays. They need to think about also the different types of products that have been bought. If we go back on that Best Price Nutrition website, I’m pretty sure those types of products need to be tested for two, three, four weeks before they actually have an effect, and people and users can actually say anything about it.

So for these guys, they should ask for reviews at least one or two months after that product has been sold. Well, for other websites, it might be different. Travel is the same when someone’s been on holiday. You want to make sure that the holiday is over before you ask for their feedback, but you want to make sure it’s still fresh enough for them to want to share their feedback and still have interesting things to share.

With this in mind, I’d say that timing is the most important. And then obviously, email seems to be the most straightforward way to do so. But if a website is able to recognize that a user is a returning client that made the purchase less than X days or weeks ago, then having a personalized message saying ‘Welcome back, what did you think about your last product?’ is definitely something that could work well.

And for small websites that are really looking to ramp up in terms of reviews and to get their first reviews on their websites, I would say giving away incentives like 5%, 10% off the product you just bought, is a good way to get those review numbers up, but also to drive a second purchase with these types of users. You don’t want to do that all along because you’d give margins away, like for smaller websites.

It is doing social proof and retention at the same time. That’s a nice way to kill two birds with one stone.

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