How to get more and better reviews online

Last updated
Mar 18, 2024
A strong online review flywheel can be one more thing that sets you apart from your competition. In this article, we walk you through how to get more and better reviews online.

For some industries like e-commerce, it’s easier to get more reviews online than in other industries like B2B. And customers are more likely to review extreme experiences, whether good or bad, than a perfectly satisfactory one. 

If you understand anything about the customer buying journey, you won’t need stats to convince you that consumers read reviews before making the decision to buy, but here's one anyway:

 “Around 9 in 10 users have made buying decisions based upon an online review”, according to Podium.

A strong online review flywheel can be one more thing that sets you apart from your competition. What can you do to increase your chances of getting more reviews and (more importantly) better ones? 

In this article, we’re going to walk you through how you can get more and better reviews online.

If you run a business, it's useful to get a few public reviews

You've probably experienced how review websites can affect your business based on a single customer's feedback – good or bad. If you’ve been at the mercy of a fake review, or seen a viral response to a negative Yelp review, you know exactly what I’m talking about. 

Review sites aren't just for finding the best Pho in town – they're now ubiquitous across industries and professional services. Even if your audience doesn't search on yelp, google reviews, or social media, they likely still turn to on-site reviews, forums, or smaller niche review sites like Capterra and or Goodreads.

To get more reviews, ask for them 

According to OptinMonster, 92% of consumers read online reviews, but only 6% write them. So how can we ensure our customers or clients leave reviews after we’ve served them? 

In process we sometimes say “bake this in”. The best way to ensure you’re not leaving anything on the table is to integrate “review ask” into every part of your customer journey that ends in a positive experience. 

  1. Make it as frictionless as possible

Simplify the review process for your customers. Avoid making them navigate through multiple pages or databases to leave a review. Learn from Anthropologie’s approach and make reviews easily accessible and simple to submit. Look at how they feature a review section on every product page.

A screenshot of a reviewDescription automatically generated
A screenshot of a computerDescription automatically generated
  1. Showcase your reviews on your website

Using the Anthropologie example, the social proof of showing the reviews is what generates trust in the product before the transaction: 

  • It shows that many people like their product, which helps convince other shoppers.
  • Having more original content is good for your website’s authority, and can geenrate organic viewers
  • Shoppers can share reviews, ask questions, and rate other reviews as helpful or not.

If your business needs the added layer of validation by using Trustpilot or a G2 carousel, those sites have licensing agreements that are pretty expensive but worth it if you have heaps of ways to use the content.

  1. Send them a follow-up email asking for the review

Well, they do say, if you don’t ask you won’t get. This applies to reviews too. After customers make a purchase, send them follow-up emails asking for reviews. These emails have an 8% response rate, making them the most effective way to gather reviews.

When is the best time to ask? For the best results, send your review request email within a week of the purchase while the positive shopping experience is still fresh. According to Loox's research, you’ll get the most reviews by sending a request by emails one OR three days after delivery if you are selling consumer products online.

Source: Loox.app

To get better reviews, improve your product, service, and your ask 

Now that we’ve covered, how to get more reviews, you’ll want to know how to get better ones. 

It’s no good if you’re getting more >> ‘bad’ reviews, is it? 

It goes without saying, that if you do get bad reviews, you should acknowledge them, and respond in a way that will alleviate the pain point, ie. the problems they have with the product or service. 

Given you’re consistently working on providing  a great product or service, then here’s what to do next.

  1. Get better reviews with giveaways or competitions

Everybody enjoys getting something for free – use that to your advantage when seeking good reviews. Organize giveaways or contests where customers can win free items, with the condition that they must rate and review you on your chosen platform to enter. Legally you may need to dislose that those reviews were incentivized.

Often, people need either anexceptional experience or a totally awful one to motivate them to leave a review. Otherwise, good products and services might go unnoticed when people don’t take the time to review everything they use every day.

Giveaways can work because the pull of “what’s in it for me?” can be much stronger when the prize is bigger. Even with a larger prize, it may cost less to the company than buying everyone a gift card. Either way, be sure to encourage honest reviews and not inflated ones – a good review won’t buy you a win. 

  1. Perks by Paylode 

Paylode is a perks platform that enables you to offer incentives to customers for completing an action. Choose from huge deals, discounts, freebies, and gift cards that you know would motivate your audience. When they leave a review, they achieve their perk, getting access immediately. 

Then, you can consistently give your customers a range of perks and rewards for reviewing your company.

This way, customers get immediate satisfaction, and aren’t disappointed if they don’t win the sweepstakes. With perks, everyone’s an immediate winner, and you can motivate roughly 15% more reviews.

Should I send review reminders?

Customers typically need some time to assess a product or reflect on their experience of a service before deciding to share a review. Requesting a review too soon may make them feel pressured and hurried. The question then becomes, when is the optimal time to ask for a review?

Harvard Business Review conducted two experiments, assigning customers randomly to treatment or control groups with review reminders at different intervals: the next day, five days, nine days, and 13 days after their product experience. Surprisingly, immediate reminders reduced the likelihood of customers posting reviews, while delayed reminders (13 days later) increased it. Reminders sent five or nine days after the product experience showed no significant difference in review likelihood. This is because reminders, though they can boost memory, can also interfere with customers' sense of posting freedom, leading to a negative state known as psychological "reactance."

Consider the following approach:

  1. Determine the average time it took customers to post reviews in the past.
  2. Check if that time has passed since the product or service experience.
  3. If not, avoid sending a review reminder to prevent interference.
  4. If yes, send a review reminder to the customer.

The right platform for you depends on where your audience goes

Depending on whether you’re B2C or B2B, there are a few major places to generate reviews. 

I recommend gathering them on your own with your customers directly, through an internal form, so you can publish them to your website first. This way you “own” the review and can use it how you want, including ask your customers to leave the same review on 3rd party sites. These dedicated websites encourage unbiased and honest reviews, and will ensure that reviews are only left by real customers. Let’s explore some of the most popular. 

If you’re service B2C, some places where you could sign up to get reviews are:

  • Firstly, one of the most popular places to gather reviews is Google Customer Reviews, which allows verified buyers to rate and review your services. To begin, create a Google Merchant Account. Boost your credibility by adding the Google brand badge and your seller rating to your website.
  • On the US-based Angi (Formerly Angie's List), people need a paid account to leave reviews. This means the reviews are often valuable because users must carefully consider before signing up and writing one.
  • Which? is a UK-based independent platform that reviews a wide range of products, from flooring to savings accounts. It stands out as one of the most reliable and trusted online review sites, making it a valuable target if you're selling products.
  • Tripadvisor is for those in entertainment, travel, or hospitality, consider Tripadvisor, the world's largest travel website trusted by people everywhere. However, keep in mind that it can be challenging to confirm reviews and remove any that might be fake.

If you’re service B2B, some places where you could sign up to get reviews are:

  • G2 and Capterra are popular sites for tech companies and Saas brands, Wirecutter has the consumer tech market on lock, and fintechs like Nerdwallet and Credit Karma will even let you rate your financial tools.
  • Glassdoor gives everyone, from job seekers to potential investors, a peek into a company's inner workings. Known as one of the world's biggest job search and salary data platforms, an account is free and you can leave a review anonymously.
  • Google Reviews works for both B2C and B2B, and makes it simple for B2B customers to provide feedback because many users are already logged into their Google accounts while browsing the internet. This removes a hurdle for customers, making it easier for them to leave a review for your business. According to a Bizrate survey, 59% of consumers turn to Google to find customer reviews.

Popular platforms for customer reviews

Trustpilot Reviews: Best for big brands

Trustpilot serves as a dedicated review platform, providing users with a forum to rate their experiences with a company, spanning from customer service to the quality of products and services.

There are a few ways to encourage customers to leave you reviews on Trustpilot. First, map the customer journey to find out when your customer is happiest with their purchase. 

If you have contact forms or a live chat on your website, you can show a prompt about Trustpilot once the query has been successfully resolved. 

Secondly, you can send a follow-up email once the sale or service is complete, asking your clients or customers to rate you via Trustpilot. Word your email in a way that expresses sincere gratitude to them for taking the time to leave the review.

Once you’ve got a good Trustpilot rating, you can pay them to display it on your website, ideally in a prominent location, to let potential clients and customers know that you’re trusted and well-rated in your industry. 

For example, AirFreight.com is the US’ highest-rated logistics service in the US, with a 5-starTrustpilot rating:

A screenshot of a company review

Google Reviews: Best for places with a location

When consumers are looking for companies near them for a particular product or service, they’re likely to look at your Google Business Profile, where previous customers and clients can rate and review your company. 

Potential customers will look at these reviews and often make decisions based on them - which is why it’s a good idea to build up a good amount of positive reviews on your Google Business Profile. 

Similar to building up good reviews on Trustpilot, prompting customers to review you – either by sending follow-up emails or by incentivizing them through competitions and giveaways which they can enter by leaving you a review – is a great way to get positive reviews on your Google Business Profile. 

Potential customers and clients are more likely to trust you if they see your good reviews. 

For example, Trader Joe’s is a well-known supermarket across the US, and their Google Business Profile reviews are always high. With high reviews, Trader Joe’s also ranks higher in map results than similar grocery stores with fewer, lower reviews.

Trader Joe's has massively positive review ratings on Google reviews

Facebook: Best for social proof

Plenty of people still use the 'book, and with Threads gaining traction, there will no doubt be more ways you can embed your FB reviews for social proof on your site. Especially if your customer base is younger overall, and if you’re a B2C (Business-to-Consumer) company, you'll find an investment in social is a long-term investment in growing an authentic audience.

If someone is looking for your product and service and types it into the search bar on Facebook, and you’ve got lots of good reviews, you’ll stand apart.

Essentially, all consumers want to know is that they’re going with a good company and that can give them what they want, with good service, on a good timeline. This is exactly the kind of trust and knowledge that reviews can instill in potential customers.  

Paylode can help 

If you’re looking to improve your customers’ engagement, so they’re incentivized to leave positive reviews (leading to more business), get in touch with Paylode today. We’re a customer perks platform trusted for helping businesses increase conversion rates using perks.

With Paylode, you can give customers a solid reason to leave you a review and engage with your company. Everyone loves a freebie or incentive, so it’s time to use that to your advantage and build up your base of positive reviews on Google, Facebook, Trustpilot and other review sites with our help.

About the author
Saima Omar
Saima Omar is a journalist and content marketing expert working with B2B and B2C brands. She's deeply interested in the buyer's journey and how language can affect purchasing behavior. When she's not writing content for her clients, you'll find her reading Fantasy Fiction, watching Harry Potter, and drinking frothy lattes.
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