It's fairly well-known in business management circles that consumers are wise to business’ sales and marketing tactics now… or at least, they like to think they are. Whilst trust in brands has to be nurtured and worked hard for, customers do tend to trust each other more easily – that is, if they believe recommendations to be authentic and honest. In a recent survey of over 2,000 online shoppers across the UK, we found that 64% of consumers trust review websites; with those surveyed 49% more likely to trust closed review platforms (that is, those that only allow verified customers to leave reviews) over open review platforms (those that allow anyone to leave a review).
These statistics speak favourably for review sites as a marketing tool for brands to utilise to help encourage the purchase decision-making process in their favour. However, most businesses find that the fewer steps they can involve in consumer’s decision-making processes, the better. After all, making it as easy as possible for a customer to assert their choice and actually buy something seems common sense. This includes providing all of the information potential customers may need or want – and with reviews being such a trusted method of recommendation, incorporating them into a brand’s own offering online can be hugely beneficial.
But how? Meet the review widget.
What is a review widget?
A review widget is a dynamic piece of code that pulls through the latest and most relevant consumer recommendations and reviews from a trusted review provider (like Feefo!) to a brand’s website. This helps demonstrate useful and authentic experiences from existing happy customers; helping to build consumer trust in the company’s products and services, drive conversions as desired to a final purchase or contact enquiry, and to improve the overall SEO of the website.
A review widget can be input into a website to fit its existing look and feel and updates in real-time to display the most recent reviews and can be programmed to display the most appropriate, too. Review widgets allow for oversight of genuine customer interaction in a sea of otherwise branded messaging.
The reviews displayed can be filtered on a product review widget to display the most relevant product testimonials, and on a service review widget, to show only those pertinent to the service received by the customer.
Types of review widgets
There’s a variety of review widgets available, with variations in code dependent on business requirements and the set-up of the vendor’s website. Whilst the technical features of each widget vary between providers, Feefo offers several different types of product and service review widgets; and here each is covered. As mentioned above, Feefo reviews are split into product and service reviews and can be filtered as appropriate across each review widget option.
Slide-Out Reviews Tab
A Slide-Out Reviews Tab is the ideal service review widget for brands looking for a discreet but powerful tool. The tab remains in a collapsed view as the user scrolls through the web page and ‘hovers’ as a small star rating to the side of the page. This initial star rating gives a positive indication and reiterates the message of a strong brand reception, but should the user want more information, they can click to expand the tab. Once fully expanded, the review widget displays an overall star rating along with the top three reviews: either the three most recent reviews or three selected specially by the business.
The ideal service reviews widget, a slide-out reviews tab is a discreet, but effective, option for those looking to highlight their great business features.
Service Review Carousel
A service review widget that gives a strong positive presence across a company’s website, the Service Review Carousel sits horizontally across the page to add an extra tab. It displays several reviews in a limited space and gives an overall star rating as a header with excerpts from chosen service reviews below.
The Service Review Carousel fits seamlessly into a brand’s website and has several display options depending on the brand’s preferences or tech requirements. Users can click across to see more review excerpts (selected carefully by the vendor, of course!) and can click through to the full Feefo site to read all ratings if desired.
Take your product review widget or service review widget out of the virtual world and make it an in-person feature with Feefo Places! Businesses with a brick-and-mortar presence can benefit from encouraging customer reviews as services are being rendered or products supplied. Feefo Places provides unique codes presented at the point of sale to allow customers the ability to later leave feedback on their brand experience.
Fully integrated with existing till/POS software, the code can be printed onto a receipt with instructions to prompt a later review (sometimes with an incentive to do so). These later reviews can be displayed on the Feefo review page as well as through a review widget on the vendor’s website.
Places codes are quick and easy to deploy and helps nurture insight into the experience by location, staff member interaction and purchase.
Pop-Up Reviews give a bold indication of positive brand experiences for those visiting a brand website by literally popping out and taking over a webpage. If a user wants to read real-time reviews and experiences, they can click onto the service review widget to read more in a pop-up.
They can be used as a product review widget for specific product pages with listings tailored for the relevant product type as required. There’s a variety of different display and style options as well as the ability to feed through reviews in real-time or select from the existing pool of content.
Feefo Score Badge
Perhaps the simplest of all Feefo review widgets, the Score Badge is an effective widget to demonstrate a positive brand position within a third-party independent review site, with the option for users to click through as desired. It's small, but it's mighty!
The Feefo Score Badge displays simply the overall star rating the brand has achieved and is available in a variety of different styles, colours, sizes, fonts, and width and height combinations. The Score Badge can be split into product or service offerings as appropriate and is clickable for users to then visit the vendor’s Feefo review page.
The Feefo Score Badge is a fantastic way to demonstrate the independence of the brand’s reviews whilst still maintaining their company look and feel.
Product Stars are a small and simple product review widget that embed directly into a product page on a brand’s website to display its rating as ranked by genuine and verified customers. Most commonly, these are found on product listings under an image or header with simply a yellow star rating and the number of reviews displayed. This provides an immediate star rating for the relevant product and can be clicked on to load further information and read the reviews given.
Product Stars can be integrated into all major online retail software including Shopify and individual custom-built retail websites.
On-page Reviews integration
Workable either as a product review widget, a service review widget or a full brand experience product review widget, On-page Reviews integration is the most comprehensive review installation.
Displaying a real-time feed of reviews submitted to Feefo on the brand’s website, On-page Reviews offers rich snippets of genuine review content and contributes to the webpage’s SEO positively. This allows consumers a broad overview of the brand’s products and services without having to navigate away from the vendor’s website – encouraging seamless online purchase (or other call to action) completion.
The reviews shown can be split or filtered as necessary and the review widget itself styled to best fit the brand’s existing aesthetics.
If reviewers have a tendency to post their own photos along with their reviews on Feefo, a Media Gallery can offer a brilliant visual tool to demonstrate their positive brand experiences. A review widget in photographic form, a media carousel allows brands to select the best picture and video submissions and display them on their own website. These are clickable for users to then read the full review, and, of course, the vendor is able to select the most appropriate submissions for display.
As social media encourages a whole new world of media sharing and consumer expectations run high, a Media Gallery provides an eye-catching and memorable review widget.
Feefo reviews are subject to powerful sentiment analysis technology that is able to read and split reviews into different categories. Workable as both a product review widget and a service review widget, Smart Themes categorises reviews into key-word themes and displays these for users to select. This allows for a hands-on approach of consumers to select and read through the most appropriate data for them – providing them with a sense of control and the ability to sort through what they find most relevant. What’s more, reviews can also be sorted by the newest and most popularly ranked.
Overall, review widgets are a fantastic way for consumers to find real customer experiences whilst remaining on the brand’s website. This facilitates an easier end-to-end purchase decision-making process and is more likely to retain the consumer’s focus. Whichever is chosen, one thing’s for sure: Feefo will make it look – and read – great!