Your business loves positive reviews and you understand how important it is in influencing potential customer business decisions. But when should you seek feedback?
If you want to get feedback from your customers, choosing an appropriate time is paramount.
You can ask them right at the moment of their purchase, but do they have enough information to write an informed review? Or, you can ask for a review later down the line, but the further you get from purchase, the less likely they are to respond.
So when is a good time to ask a customer to share their experience?
The short answer:
When the customer has reached their peak of satisfaction for the services, products, or goods provided to them.
You don’t want to randomly solicit reviews
Your customers don’t feel peak satisfaction until their service needs have been fully met. This leaves them without the desire or knowledge to write an informed review of their experience. You also increase the risk of receiving negative feedback by asking random customers or patients to share their experience.
It is obviously a priority to ensure a quality experience for every customer, but it is also important to only ask customers to review if you think they are likely to leave a favorable comment.
How to know when a customer has reached their peak of satisfaction?
This can be tricky for certain businesses like chiropractors, cosmetic surgery centers, or medical practices: businesses that can require multiple visits to fulfill the goals and expectations of the patient or customer. Even if your business doesn’t fit this category, it can be tough to know which customers would make good reviewers.
Asking these individuals for verbal feedback, first, is a good way to gauge if it would be favorable to ask them to leave an online review.
After you have determined that a patient or customer would be a good candidate to ask for online feedback, catch them at a good time, which is usually right away! Once they are out the door, they’ll probably never get around to reviewing, and you’ve missed a golden opportunity for improving your business’ online reputation.
After they have made a purchase
When a customer makes a purchase, they often go through a psychological process where they need to internally justify what they bought. The need to feel they made the right choice. This falls within a concept known as effort justification, the tendency to attribute a value to an outcome. One that the person put effort into achieving. In a way, this is the opposite to buyer’s remorse.
If you can reach a customer right after they made a purchase, you increase your chances of receiving a positive review. The good news is, getting reviews is frequently as simple as asking for them.
In an article by Search Engine Land referencing BrightLocal’s annual Local Consumer Review Survey, 70% of consumers will leave a review for a business when asked.
It may seem odd to solicit reviews from customers immediately after a purchase, but the customer or patient will be much more likely to share their experience when you do. Also, the reviews will be made with more enthusiasm, as the customers are near their highest point of satisfaction, which is usually within a week of purchase.
Empowering Your Customers and Patients to Leave a Review
Your customers control the conversation online. Let them know that by empowering them to share their experience online. Again, you only want to encourage customers or patients who you have screened as likely to leave a positive review.
You want to take each person as a separate entity and be conscientious of their time and mindset.
Prefacing the request with tact can avoid disruption and ensure a positive response with them actually agreeing to leave a review.
Not all feedback is created equal. You don’t necessarily want to publish reviews from every one of your patients or customers. You want feedback to be sincere, thoughtful, and authentic.
If feedback is not organic, it won’t pass value to your business or future customers who see the review. This makes it important to ask for feedback at the right time, and from the right candidates.
Most importantly, take care of your customers, and they will take care of you!
Sources: Search Engine Land, BrightLocal