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Top 5 Ways to Leverage Reviews to Fuel Online Growth

Consumers are no strangers to investigative work. When they want a product, many are willing to do extensive research in order to find the best solution on the market.

Online consumer shopping behaviors have drastically shifted in the last few years, igniting unprecedented, rapid change in the slow, steady growth of online retail.

In 2020 alone, year-over-year revenue growth online increased by 68%. And it is worth taking note that 2020 had already registered an all-time high in ecommerce revenue growth in January— months before the pandemic had workers and consumers staying home full time. 


analytics preview year over year revenue growth

Brand reputation and
online reviews play a critical role in turning a prospect into a lifelong customer. Whether it is deciding a place to eat, which facial cleanser is best for their skin type, or simply buying a new pair of running shoes, your future customers are heavily impacted by online reviews

In a recent study by the Spiegel Research Center on how online reviews influence sales, researchers found reviews have a greater impact on purchase likelihood for more expensive products than cheaper products. In fact, reviews displayed for higher-priced products saw an increase of 380% in conversion rate, while the reviews boosted conversion rate by 190% for lower-priced products.

conversion increase graph low price vs high-price conversion 

For an ecommerce brand, it is essential to strategize how to best leverage online customer reviews to increase your site’s conversion rate, drive revenue, and improve your brand's reputation.

Let's walk through the top five ways to leverage reviews to fuel online growth. 

1. Use Reviews on Key Pages to Increase Conversion Rates 

Placing positive consumer reviews in the right spots throughout your site can drastically improve your online conversion rate. Approximately 77% of online shoppers indicated they are more likely to purchase when a company displays product reviews

How and where to use customer reviews on a website starts with making sure you are adding reviews to your product display pages (PDPs). Showing the success other buyers have had with the product they are viewing is the first step toward building credibility with shoppers. 

shopper approved old review page

Link: https://www.sailrite.com/Sailrite-Ultrafeed-LSZ-1-PLUS-Walking-Foot-Sewing-Machine

shopper approved google search listing of sewing machine products

shopper approved google search listing of sewing machine products 2

2. Use Reviews as Unique Content on Product Pages to Improve SEO

Drive more customers to your site by leveraging keyword-rich customer reviews. You can leverage the power of user-generated content packed with long-tail keywords for SEO gains without having to write multiple pieces of content. 

Long-tail keywords are typically three to four-words long and mimic a consumer’s natural voice search patterns. Incorporating these reviews into your core pages can help increase keyword targeting and search visibility.

For example, if you search on Google for the term, “hot dog toaster,” you will see that Amazon ranks the first organic result. Note, there are paid ads and shopping results, videos, and a featured snippet that ranks above the organic listings when searching for that term.

shopper approved google search listing of  hot dog toaster products

The reviews talk about "hot dogs" and "dog toasters" often, which helps search engines like Google to understand that this product is relevant to people looking for a hot dog toaster.

shopper approved google search listing of hot dog toaster  products

You should look for opportunities to feature verified reviews that utilize keywords that potential customers use as they search for products like the ones you sell. 

3. Use Schema Markup to Highlight Reviews in Organic Search Results and Online Ads 

Schema.org is the supportive vocabulary extension that is commonly used by Google, Microsoft, and Yahoo for markup languages that are understood by all major search engines. This vocabulary makes it easier for webmasters to define content assets and greatly improve your brand's appearance within search engine results pages (SERPs).

code preview of json-ld

There are two tools businesses can take advantage of when looking to incorporate review markups.

  • Google’s Rich Snippets Markup Tool

The Rich Snippets Markup Helper tool allows you to see how to update your site so Google can better understand the data you are sharing.

  • Google’s Rich Snippets Markup Testing Tool

The Rich Snippets Markup Testing Tool helps webmasters test Rich Snippet implementation. It also provides a view of what your snippet might look like when it is displayed on Google search results pages. 

For branded or product searches, you will likely see industry-specific review sites or product pages from third-party sites pulling up on the search engine results pages (SERP) along with your own site and product pages.

For example, when you search "purple mattresses," you see these results show up:

shopper approved google search listing of purple mattresses products


Sites like Amazon, Sleepopolis, Sleepfoundation.org, and others show up on the first page for this branded keyword. 

Understanding your brand's online reputation will better help you optimize for increased conversions as you work to quickly show how your product(s) are rated and perceived by potential consumers shopping online.  

4. Use Reviews in Emails to Build Credibility and Boost Click-Through Rates

Incorporating reviews into your email marketing can provide the persuasive push your customers need to click through to your site and make a purchase. Social proof creates a sense of desire that makes your customers feel the need to fit in and to be a part of your business’s loyal fan base. 

You can also incorporate reviews in all of your ads and marketing collateral to improve your ROAS (return on ad spend) across your marketing ecosystem.

review stars on multiple device platforms

5. Use Reviews in Remarketing Ads on Facebook and Instagram

While promotional messages are good to share with your audience, they do nothing to help in your ad strategy. Instead, potential customers want to hear from your current customers about why they can’t live without your brand or products. Take advantage of your positive reviews by promoting the praise you have received through customizable, targeted Facebook and Instagram ads.


facebook ads of figs with scrub suits with review stars

On average, Facebook ads that incorporate reviews and testimonials see higher click-through rates, lower costs per click, and lower cost per acquisition

Incorporating social proof can have a dramatic impact on your results, and when combined with the following tactics, you can drastically improve your social advertising ROI.

nordictrack ads with review testimonial

Consider What Stage in the Buying Funnel You Are Targeting

When selecting reviews for Facebook and Instagram ads, it is crucial to understand what audience you are targeting and what stage in the funnel they happen to be in. First-time buyers will need to hear a different message than those who are more familiar with your website. 

First-time users should be shown top-selling products and reviews that highlight the overall happiness of your customers. These reviews spark intrigue into your brand but do not overwhelm them with product-specific information too early in the buyer’s journey. 

After users have seen general reviews on your top-selling products, you can then retarget those shoppers with an authentic user testimonial that describes the benefits of a specific product and brand as a whole.

Create Ad Copy with Reviews in Mind

When incorporating reviews into your advertising efforts, it is important to remember the following three tips:

  • Keep Your Copy Simple: You only have a few seconds to catch your customer’s eye, don’t waste your money on promoting novel-length reviews. Keep it short and to-the-point for the best results.
  • Avoid the Straight-Forward Sales Pitch: Instead of highlighting your testimonials as reviews, try inviting your prospects to pay attention what your current clients are saying about your products.
  • Stick To Your Brand’s Voice: When incorporating reviews, it is crucial to review the user-generated content to ensure the message is on-brand and effective. Avoid reviews that don’t match the tone on your website. 


It is important to remember that it matters less what you say about your brand and more what your customers are saying about your brand. By putting your customers' reviews to work, you can help your prospects commit to purchase. 

Strategically placing reviews on key pages, customizing ads based on your customers’ position in the sales funnel, and working customer reviews into your SEO and email marketing plans will effectively boost your online sales growth. 

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CEO of Stryde, I partner with forward-thinking ecommerce companies and large retailers to increase website traffic and drive revenue growth.

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