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To prove the value your brand has to offer, why not let your happy customers do the talking? There is no better way to gain trust than customer testimonials.
Social proof is an incredibly important part of any website that aims to convert its visitors into clients or customers. It lends an added level of credibility and trustworthiness to your pages, and it testifies to the quality of your products or services.
Consumers inherently trust social proof as it comes from real people and not the company itself. People just like them are perceived to have no agenda to push and can be honest in their opinions about their experiences with a brand.
One of the best ways to incorporate social proof is to use customer testimonials. As long as you align them with your target audience’s preferences, you should notice their impact on your conversion rates.
Let’s look at seven great examples that will hopefully inspire you to add your own testimonials:
1. Customer Quotes
The oldest, simplest, and most straightforward kind of testimonial is the customer quote. It is also the first to pop into most people’s minds when they think of testimonials.
They are essentially nothing more than a blurb from a customer – akin to the blurbs you see on book jackets, for example. They sum up someone’s experience with a company and encourage others to work with them or shop with them.
The key to using customer quotes successfully lies in two things: choosing the customer you quote carefully and making the quote visually appealing.
You are likely to have all kinds of customers, spread out across different demographics, incomes, and interests. Try to choose quotes from the ones that will most likely resonate with the majority of your target audience.
Also, ensure your quotes are more than just words. Add an image of the customer, format them well, and spread them around your pages – homepage, product and service pages, and so on.
Simple Green Smoothies has done a great job with their customer quotes. They are visually appealing, show real people, and inspire plenty of trust in their product.
2. Peer Quotes
Similar to the customer quote but with a bit of a twist is the peer quote. Its success relies on the fact that people want to hear from others who are like them, but perhaps a bit more successful.
For example, if you’re targeting small business owners, they might be swayed by a quote from a fellow small business owner whose business they’ve actually heard of.
To pinpoint the best peer quotes, drill down your ideal buyer persona to the finest details and figure out who they would like to hear from. You can reach out to specific people or companies for a quote if you’ve identified them as interesting to your audience – offering them to test your product or service, of course.
Ahrefs does this really well. They feature testimonials from successful peers of their target audience, and most of these people are already heard of.
3. Celebrity Testimonials
Another step further on the ladder of customer quotes is the celebrity endorsement. While customers and peers are mostly unknown to the general public, your celebrity endorsement will come from someone most people have likely heard of.
These are the biggest names in your industry (or an industry that is interested in your products or services). These are the people your target audience looks up to and would feel a bit giddy meeting.
Of course, eliciting a celebrity testimonial won’t be a walk in the park. It may be costly, and it may require a lot of effort from your PR department. But it may also come about quite naturally when a celebrity genuinely likes and uses your product or service.
Foundr has done an amazing job with their celebrity testimonials, and they’ve managed to snag some pretty big names in the business.
4. Video Testimonials
Now, let’s look at some other customer testimonial formats. Instead of just relying on words and images, you can take their effectiveness a step further with video testimonials.
Bear in mind that not everyone will want to watch them. Those browsing during their commute or those who can’t play the sound on their phone for whatever reason might skip the video, so make sure there are other testimonials available as well.
The same rules apply to video testimonials as before – select the customer carefully and ensure they’re someone your audience would trust. Also, try to choose people who are natural on camera. No matter how relevant their testimony is, they won’t be able to send a strong enough message if they’re clearly awkward.
Make sure the videos appear professional – even if they are recorded via webcam by the customers themselves.
Skillcrush has nailed their video testimonials. All of them speak volumes about the usefulness and benefits of their classes.
The people they’ve chosen to feature all get their message across well and are likely to appeal to the brand’s varied target audience.
5. Social Media Testimonials
You can also reach over to social media for your fill of customer testimonials. If you have a bit of a following, or if people are talking about you on any social platform, if you are engaging with your audience and chatting about your product or service, you can use some of these conversations as your testimonials.
Your first step is to share this positive blurb across your own social channels. Like it, screenshot it and feature it, do what you can to get it in front of your audience on socials. You can also reach out and thank the person raving about you.
Then also ask if you can feature it on your website. You could just use the screenshot, but it’s always nicer to ask. Some people might simply not want to be featured, and as a brand, you have to respect that. On the other hand, others will love the exposure, so you’ll be giving a bit of a boost to one of your fans at the same time.
Canva has done this really well, incorporating testimonials from several platforms. You can stick to just the one if you prefer, preferably the one where most of your target audience hangs out.
6. Success Stories
A longer form of customer testimonial is the success story. Their power lies in the fact that they are able to show quantifiable and perceivable results. Instead of just saying something positive, they are able to show a step-by-step process and explain how your product or service has helped someone solve an issue.
Success stories will not work in every industry, however, and definitely not for every brand. But if what you sell makes a change that can be measured in your customer’s lives, you’ll want to incorporate them into your website.
When it comes to the format of the success story, it can be a video, an image, or a chart showing figures and facts. The fitness industry likes to use images, while marketing brands usually show charts and tables, for example. The most effective choice will depend on your niche.
The key is to show real, clear, and tangible results, with as little superfluous wording as possible.
Nerd Fitness showcases some of their client’s success stories with images – the best choice in their line of work – corroborated with numbers and a back story.
7. Case Study/Blog Post Testimonials
Finally, let’s also talk about the case study, which most often takes the form of a blog post.
It’s quite similar to the success story, in the sense that it explains how a client or customer has managed to solve an issue or achieve a certain result with your help. However, it provides more of a story, shining more light on the customer and letting their own words come through.
It also allows you to go into much more detail about your involvement, letting you explain the following crucial factors:
● what you have done
● what your expectations were
● how these expectations changed
● what your company had learned from the processes
This kind of long-form content is also great for content marketing purposes. It certainly helps you establish yourself as a force to be reckoned with in your industry. So, if you’re able to write a case study and you have concrete numbers or other forms of results you can show, don’t miss out on the opportunity to use them.
AppSumo features some of their client’s case studies on their blog, talking about the challenges and obstacles they have overcome. They make for a very informative read and a valuable resource to their audiences.
With the clever use of customer testimonials on your website, you can boost your conversion rates, make your website more trustworthy and relatable, and share real people’s experiences with your company.
And now, it’s time for you to take over. Consider some of the examples we’ve listed and how you can incorporate similar testimonials into your own pages. It’s definitely worth the effort.
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