Executive Summary: A website has only 2 sections — what the business has to say about itself, and what the customers have to say about the business, that is testimonials. This article attempts to give a perspective into how to present testimonials in step with your service offerings.
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A website is for customers, and the testimonials speak louder than what the entire website has to say about the business. So, if you have a website designed for your business, this is how you may go about collecting, organizing, and presenting testimonials.
Testimonials, Your Service (or Product) Offerings, and Organization
Businesses make many service (or product) offerings but present only the most important services on the website. Therefore, you must first decide what service offerings you would like to present on the website.
For each service offering, choose the marquee clients you would like to showcase on your website. This exercise has to be done with care because, as a business, you would like to be showcased as a business that successfully executes complex projects or cutting-edge projects, or as a business capable of delivering such projects. And if your clients don’t belong to that area of business, or if the testimonial does not state or hint at your capabilities, the testimonial does not help enough.
When your service offerings are specific to industry sectors, make it a point to collect a couple of testimonials from customers belonging to each segment.
Content of a Testimonial
The content can include:
- Range of services used
- Ease of doing business with you
- Value added to the customer’s offering
- The wow factor in the service
- The reviewer’s name, designation, and company.
Content Format of a Testimonial
The more visual, the better. If it can’t be visual and is only made up of text, help the reader scan and get the gist quickly. More importantly, help the reader decide if reading the review is useful even before she starts reading it.
The sooner, the better. Collect it soon after the service is rendered or product is purchased. Sometimes, customers may need guidance in writing a testimonial. Help them write the content.
You may even think of setting up a process to collect testimonials.
Sliders and testimonial pages are the most common areas to find the testimonials. However, the best use is when you display it at the point where a customer makes a decision. Therefore, using them on the landing pages, above the fold, is crucial for conversion.
To know more about how reviews can help your business, visit PowerReviews.
Sometimes, customers, mostly from the B2C segment, ask us to pick up the customer reviews from the Facebook pages or Google Reviews. Often, this does not work for a couple of reasons. The customers who give a review often are not explicit. They simply award star ratings and write that the services were great. Since such reviews don’t include the specifics mentioned in the Content of a Testimonial section above, visitors to your website may not find the reviews very useful. Sometimes, an outside agency like us cannot view all the testimonials on your Facebook page unless you grant us permissions.
In the B2B segment, often the testimonial collection is the most neglected aspect. As a result, the service renderer often misses what created the wow factor. Also, many business owners need hand-holding in writing the testimonials. We have noticed that both cultural and language proficiency challenges are at play here. If your customer is not comfortable writing a testimonial in English, you may think of doing a video with him in the vernacular language. Even a testimonial shot using a good quality camera phone will do. What matters is your client’s endorsement. Everything else is secondary. If bandwidth is a concern, you can opt for a voice recording. (While recording, ask the customer to state his name, designation, and company. This will improve the credibility factor greatly.)