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6 Ways to Add Testimonials to Your Website—And Why You Need Them

Customers trust the opinions of others, that’s what you need testimonials to add to your website. Learn the ins and outs of displaying customer reviews.

Whether you are a company that has been selling online for years, or you primarily work with your customers face-to-face in your brick-and-mortar shop, you still need to find the most effective ways to market your products and services. This is true no matter which industry you're in. The bottom line is that your company will only thrive with continued outreach to retain your current clients, and a proven way to drive new business. One of the most effective ways is through customer reviews or testimonials.

What is the best way to market your company?

This is an issue that hasn't changed as industries have become more invested in marketing online. Digital marketing is surely the future of marketing for your business. And likely you have already begun to use digital marketing strategies to drive new business.

If anyone had asked you to list the best ways to get new customers 10 or 20 years ago, referrals would have been at the top of your list. That answer is still true, even in the shift to digital marketing.

Why is it true? It's true because referrals are given when a client trusts you and your company.

A client's trust is a commodity that is difficult to obtain, and when their trust is shared with a potential client, you don't have to woo them nearly as much. Testimonials are the digital marketing version of customer referrals.

What is a testimonial?

A testimonial at its core is a customer review. The customer attests to using your product, and in their own words, tells the vast audience of the internet what their experience was like. While you can get testimonials from celebrities and other influencers, most potential customers put their trust in the testimonials of regular people just like them.

Testimonials are social proof. Each testimonial is proof that a real customer has used your product, and is telling people how that experience went. They are providing first-hand proof of using your product from a third party, someone who doesn't gain anything from talking about it.

Types of testimonials to add to your website

Testimonials come in several formats and offer you creative ways to engage your website visitors while providing proof that your services are trustworthy.

You can use any and all of these methods of providing social proof that new customers will trust enough to give your services a try. Social proof helps overcome customers' objections, and answers questions about your services before a customer has a chance to state them. In fact, one survey found that:

“The purchase likelihood for a product with five reviews is 270% greater than the purchase likelihood of a product with no reviews,” the Spiegel report found.

Using customer reviews and other testimonials in your content can boost the SEO value, putting your brand in front of more searchers. Embedding customer reviews on your website also improves the SEO of your entire site, since the reviews are relevant content that search engines can crawl to rank you higher.

This content marketing strategy can result in a significant boost in sales, and with the right customer service, turn your customers into brand ambassadors.

1. Video testimonials

Video testimonials are one of the most popular ways new users can learn about your product in an entertaining and engaging manner. In most cases, videos should be short. If you have a lot of information to convey, you can create a group of short videos.

Videos should display genuine testimony from actual users to gain the most trust from your audience. If you're not sure what length video to use, you can set up A/B testing to find out.

2. Quote testimonials

Quotes are the most traditional testimonials, which were in use before the internet was invented. Even now, you can see quotes on billboards, in magazines, on the radio, and in other traditional media. Quotes are simply the stated opinion of your service from an actual user. The user may be an influencer or celebrity, but they are describing their experience with your service.

One reason quotes are so popular is that it's easy to get them. You can ask customers to leave a review of your service on a survey or evaluation form. Or just come right out and ask them for a quote. It's important that you get permission in writing to use their quote in your marketing. Many businesses send out a quick survey after users sign up or use their services to obtain customer reviews and quotes.

When you do use a quote in your marketing, you must clearly show who is being quoted and the original source.

3. Blog post reviews

Blog post reviews have become the bread and butter for many marketing departments. They are a good way to promote customer retention and engagement before, after, or between visits, and you can use them for customer education to learn the ways your business can help them. Your own blog can extend your audience's engagement by using testimonials in a number of formats and encourage them to sign up for other connections to your business like social media, email marketing, etc.

You don't have to be a big business to reap the rewards of blog posts. Many companies find that using smaller third-party bloggers to review their products is highly successful. And younger buyers, like Gen Zers, are the most likely to trust influencer bloggers.

4. User-generated content

User-generated content is any content that a user creates and posts in any format without any influence by the company they are testifying about. Many of the formats discussed on this page can be user-generated content. The most popular types of user-generated content are:

  • Customer reviews in any format
  • Blog posts
  • Industry-expert product or service reviews in any format
  • Posts on third-party review sites like Yelp

5. Case studies

Case studies are in-depth studies of how clients use your products. These are often used when a business is selling a complex product or service and need a way to demonstrate product qualities and benefits to prospective buyers or new customers. Case studies are long-form testimonials that should be used in the middle or near the end of the marketing funnel and can also help a new customer get up-to-speed on new equipment or service products.

6. Customer interviews

Customer interviews can be conducted by your business to market your services, but they are even more effective when a third-party expert conducts them. Third-party interviewers don't have to be fans of your services to talk about them with experts who test them in-person.

Other types of customer interviews are created by inside company marketers, and outsourced marketers to promote a brand, product, or service ad and to answer frequently-asked-questions.

7. Success stories

There are similarities between success stories and case studies. They both are looking into how an actual client has used your product or service. While a case study delves into how the service is used to demonstrate to prospective clients or new customers, a success story is a literal story about how a client succeeded in reaching or surpassing their goals while using your service.

Success stories are used to promote a service to new leads and prospects, and sometimes to new customers as examples of how a similar company succeeded using your service. These stories can be marketed in several formats with articles, written content for website or blog posts, or in audio-visual media.

8. Press reviews

Press reviews aren't the same thing as press releases. A press release is generated by a brand to announce a change, new product, or an achievement.

A press review's most well-known usage is to comment on the quality of some type of entertainment, like a new movie, concert, artist opening, new restaurant, etc. You can find press releases in many periodicals online and offline like newspapers, blogs, magazines, radio shows, streaming, or television.

A press review is generated from the reviewer's experience of your newest addition to your restaurant's menu or latest Broadway show, etc.

9. Social media posts

Social media channels have become an influential component for disseminating information to people in your audience. Many of these channels are household names, like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. These channels have developed along with the technology available to post online, and many of them allow text, image, and video posts with fun shareable designs and formats that are easy-to-use and don't take long to create.

Social media channels produce vast networks of like-minded people who post and share information on any topic they're interested in. You can also use them to create subgroups of people who use or are interested in using your products.

Each channel can be used to entertain, engage, and promote your brand, products, and services, and link to your website, online content, educational information, and YouTube channel to engage with longer-form content. Statista states that "the average daily social media usage of internet users worldwide amounted to 147 minutes per day," which gives you multiple opportunities to post testimonials in several formats.

10. Hero images

Hero images are still images used as marketing or advertising that show people using your products. Companies use hero images by themselves on signs, headers, social media posts, and ads. These may also have written text or quotes superimposed on the image. You can also use hero images on blog posts, email marketing, embedded on your website, and in articles. These are usually splashy and may feature a celebrity or influencer.

Why are testimonials important for online businesses?

Testimonials offer a way to build trust in your business. You can use them for brick-and-mortar businesses, but they are even more influential for online businesses. A study by ReviewMonitoring shows that "76% of consumers trust online reviews, second only to friends and family (81%)," and this isn't just for B2C customers. Trust in reviews is also influential for B2B buyers.

Since trust is the key factor in gaining new customers, you can see why testimonials are so important.

Testimonials work best when you use more than one type and more than one channel. Many testimonials can be generated without a large budget and distributed to your audience with minimal investment. Testimonials are a proven way to drive business to your company, products, and services.

6 Creative ways to add testimonials to your website

You can add testimonials to your website in a variety of ways to engage website visitors. If you place testimonials in several places, your website visitors are more likely to see them.

Since testimonials are so valuable in gaining the trust of your visitors, placing them in highly visible spots near the top of pages will catch the attention when viewers land on each page. They can be used in just about any section of your website, even near the heading or navigation menu.

You can even create banner headings or other visual marketing ads on your own website to encourage visitors to see them or click a link to view them.

Since you appeal to a visitor's senses, and imbue that appeal with an emotional punch, visitors are more likely to convert while engaging your website. Here are some of the best ways to display testimonials on websites.

1. Make a dedicated testimonial page

Including a dedicated testimonial page on your website can be used as a landing page of sorts. While the page may get traffic directly from search engines, you can also drive traffic to it using on-page links, or even more traffic by linking to it on social media posts, email marketing, content marketing, or in video marketing. Website testimonials can be text only using interesting fonts to grab attention, but they're even better when you add images to catch a visitor's eye.

2. Add testimonials to your home page

Adding testimonials to your home page is a good way to create a positive impression of your brand. This location will get the attention of people who search for your brand or by company name, and will also be seen by anyone who is referred to your company.

3. Add testimonials to your sidebar

Many websites have advertisements for other businesses on their sidebar. Since your sidebar can be viewed throughout your website, it is prime real estate and you may want to consider putting your own ads featuring testimonials there instead.

4. Add them to your about page

Many new website visitors are interested in the history and people behind your company. This is especially true if you are a service business like an accountant or dentist. People want to know that they will be hiring someone who is professional, and is experienced in their field. This is a good place for happy client quotes.

5. Add them as your website footer

Similar to the sidebar, your website footer is seen on every page of your website. While it isn't as crucial a location as your sidebar and top of the page, it still will get attention. It is a common place for advertising and marketing, so why not market your own business instead of someone else's.

6. Add testimonials on your Mailchimp website

A good place for testimonials is your Mailchimp website. You can request a testimonial using an automation email after a customer purchases an item, or if you're a Mailchimp Partner, on your website.

Be authentic with genuine customers

When generating and creating testimonial marketing, make sure you use real customers who have used your services. Authentic testimonials resonate with prospective customers, giving them a feel of realism. And authenticity gives your testimonials more value. Winning customers' trust is a key to success.

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