Transparency has become a vital core value for each company. This is especially important for web or e-commerce businesses because potential customers do not have physical contact with the company’s staff or products.
The companies that will manage to provide and maintain their transparency, truthfulness, and authenticity will win big in the digital world.
Furthermore, the testimonials you display on your website must reflect the real customers and, in many cases, give a choice for the potential customer to find also some unsatisfied experiences.
That is why in this article, we will outline one of the most innovative ways to provide transparency, trust, and social proof through actively maintaining testimonials on web pages.
- What is a testimonial?
- Why are customer testimonials effective?
- Where to use testimonials
- Types of customer testimonials
- Quote testimonials
- Video testimonial
- Social media testimonial
- Image testimonial
- Case studies
- Customer reviews
- Interview testimonials
- Influencer testimonials
- Blog post reviews
- Documentary series testimonials
- Key Takeaways
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What is a testimonial?
A testimonial is a written statement made by a satisfied customer who had an experience that affirms the value of a product or service and is often confused with a case study or success story.
The testimonials are provided by buyers who trusted your process, felt satisfied with the end product or service, and were willing to share their positive experiences and help you gain more potential clients and sales. They are also considered recommendations and are given mostly by happy customers, voluntarily or upon a company’s request.
Please note that the most valued benefit of the testimonials is their direct impact on the speed of making purchasing decisions. Our study showed a 12% lift in booking rates in only 4 weeks after the company placed Facebook reviews on their website.
When writing or gathering customer testimonials, be sure to include the following elements:
- The customer’s name and position within their company
- A headshot of the customer
- A quote from the customer about their experience
- If applicable, a link to the customer’s website or social media profile
Some of the best examples of customer testimonials come from companies that have gathered them on video. This format allows customers to speak directly to potential new customers unscripted, naturally.
If you’re looking for some inspiration, check out the following examples of customer testimonials done right:
Why are customer testimonials effective?
Testimonials in the form of online reviews today are an essential part of the success of small online businesses and startups.
So, here is why they are so important for business owners and how they contribute to the whole customer experience:
- Build credibility and trust
- Enhance your content marketing efforts
- They increase conversions
- Improve your online reputation and SEO for specific pages
Now, when you are familiar with testimonials’ benefits, let me suggest where you should use them.
Where to use testimonials
Here is the ugly truth: visitors rarely go to testimonials pages. They can sense the marketing a mile away.
There is no expectation that they’ll get any information except a sales pitch. That’s why testimonials pages get less traffic than other pages. Putting your social proof here hides it from your visitors.
Customer testimonials are a powerful tool every marketer should use in their arsenal.
- In a nice-looking section on your home page
- On product pages or service pages, along with a CTA button
- In your most popular blog posts, to improve the conversion rate
Types of customer testimonials
Here the most commonly used types of testimonials you can find online:
This is definitely the most beloved and common type of testimonials. Quote testimonials are direct words from a customer who was satisfied with the products or services they received.
They are short testimonials and often include LinkedIn or other highly relevant profiles of the person. Review sites like Google Maps, Yelp, and others.
Video testimonials have become very popular in recent years, and it is really easy to create and embed them on your website.
One of the greatest things about them is that they are difficult to fake and are considered highly trustworthy, and look authentic compared to the other types of testimonials.
A great and unique example is Help Scout’s series of video testimonials of their customers called Against The Grain.
Today, influencers are highly trusted authorities in a specific industry or field. They’re popular amongst their peers, and it is almost impossible to avoid them.
Getting testimonials from influencers in your niche is highly effective for your business because people recognize their names, and it shows your audience that you are trustworthy.
After all, it is a win-win situation for both parties when a relevant brand collaborates with a relevant influencer.
Social media testimonials
It’s when customers write about their experience with your product or service in a form of tweets on Twitter, Facebook reviews or posts, screenshots on Instagram or even a YouTube video review.
These types of testimonials happen organically and are authentic to your reputation as a brand, serving as social proof of your business success.
Therefore, you can use EmbedReviews to generate and embed them on your website.
Here is how our Facebook reviews widget looks in action:
A creative way to combine a success story, Q&A session, or audio and video testimonial are to interview your clients and help to get more details from their experience using your product or service. The great thing about these interview testimonials is that they can be used as long-form content on your website and even repurposed for other marketing campaigns.
Here is an example of an interview testimonial on our website.
Success stories testimonials
A success story testimonial is an in-depth analysis of an individual customer’s experience with your business.
Sometimes, there is not a big difference between success story testimonials and interview testimonials because they both can include Q&A, statistics, and long-form content.
Success stories provide an opportunity to sell the user on the positive results (before and after analysis) that a previous customer experienced.
At EmbedSocial, we also use these types of testimonials. Here is an example:
Peer testimonials are especially helpful for customers interacting with your business for the first time.
You may not have noticed, but we are more likely to buy a product or use a service if the person that has given a testimonial is of similar status to you. We are likely to trust someone who resembles our traits and demographics.
Basically, you should ask for testimonials from people of similar status to your audience within your target market.
A great place for these types of testimonials is Yelp reviews.
Now, that you are familiar with the most used testimonial examples, let’s dive deeper and see how some industry leaders use them on their websites.
All other forms of promotion, no matter how captivating your writing, how professionally produced your images, or how glamorous your movies may be, are completely insignificant compared to testimonials and reviews.
Every company should use customer testimonials as a potent marketing tool to highlight how their goods or services have enhanced the lives of their customers.
Let’s see 10 testimonial examples you can use for your business.
A direct quote testimonial is an effective way to quickly provide social proof for your goods or services. This is probably the easiest type of testimonial you can get.
This kind of endorsement works best for goods or services that don’t need much money or thought but might still use some confidence. By showcasing the experience of similar people, you show your target persona why your product could be beneficial for them too.
Here’s a quote testimonial example from Appcues, a SaaS software that creates product onboarding experiences:
If you have the needed resources to create a video, this might be the most powerful type of testimonial. Video testimonials are best for more complex products requiring more time to decide. Moreover, these products also require effort to adopt, like a SaaS software for developers that will change the way your development team works.
Dropbox, an online storage and collaboration startup, has one of the best video customer testimonials out there:
Social media testimonial
Customers often go to social media to share their experiences with a brand. Twitter and Reddit are very popular places where customers share unpaid reviews.
Moreover, Facebook and Google Business Profile have review features where any customer can come and leave a review for your business.
Finding a positive review on social media and listing it in your testimonials can put you in a powerful position where potential customers can see that you’re getting many unpaid positive reviews.
Here’s an example that Ahrefs, a SEO tool, could use to boost their testimonial game:
Image testimonials are very helpful when promoting a beauty product or anything else that provides a visual result. Images speak louder than words, and this situation is perfect for to use of visual elements.
Here’s an example from an Instagram makeup page that uses before and after images:
Case studies allow you to demonstrate the outcomes your brand, product, or service can deliver to actual customers. You may demonstrate your ability to deliver on your promises and address potential consumers’ how, what, who, and why questions. They can aid in increasing lead generation and hastening revenue.
This case study contains:
- Introduction to the client (Kiva)
- Different quotes and visuals to enrich the story
- How Kiva started using Slack
- How Slack empowers Kiva’s team to collaborate better
- Examples of the Kiva team using different Slack channels for different purposes
All these details make a great story that leads to the point that Slack empowers Kiva to be a better and more effective organization.
There are many sites like Trustpilot, G2, and Capterra, where customers can leave product reviews. These reviews are very detailed and contain all the information a potential customer might need to decide whether to buy or not.
Facebook and Google also have these features, so customers can leave reviews for you there too. You can use them to showcase your product’s positive reputation among its users.
Here’s an example of a Trustpilot review for Eloan, a finance company:
This is also a great opportunity for e-commerce stores to increase the sales of their popular products. Here’s an example from Asos, one of the largest e-commerce retailers:
An interview is an excellent approach to creating a customer testimonial, especially if you don’t have a standard format for other types of testimonials.
A strong interview testimonial example will draw the reader, listener, or viewer into the discussion and tale. It will explain how the customer discovered your service, what issue you resolved for them, and what happened. after they made a purchase from you.
Codecademy has an entire base of interview testimonials from their students who talk about their learning paths and why they decided to switch to coding.
People identify with influencers. They believe in their judgment and follow their recommendations.
That’s why an influencer testimonial is a great way to show credibility. If someone popular with a large fan base is using your product, their followers will want to purchase it too.
Check out this great example from the Tony Robbins website:
Blog post reviews
Case studies should be a mandatory category on your blog page. However, asking clients to write a blog post about your product is also a good practice. This kind of review enables your customer to tell their narrative from their own point of view and shows readers that no one is speaking for them.
This way, you can target their customers and get linked to their website, which is great for SEO purposes.
There are also sites specialized for blog post reviews, and people go there to look for recommendations. Placing your product on a site like this can open a new audience for your product. Here’s an example from Techradar:
Documentary series testimonials
Most testimonials provide readers a high-level overview of the clients, consumers, and outcomes they’ve seen.
For a testimony for a documentary series, such is not the case.
Consider allowing potential customers to view how others have benefited from utilizing your product or service. Prospects may view the client’s journey and what it was like before and after. Additionally, this makes the testimony seem more genuine.
Here’s one of the most popular examples of a testimonial like this. Getting 10,000 Subscribers, the flagship product of Growth Tools (formerly Videofruit) founder Bryan Harris, was released in 2016.
Bryan took a different approach than the majority of course testimonials. His past pupils from earlier programs were featured in a three-part documentary series he recorded.
Customer testimonials are a valuable way to build trust and credibility with potential customers. When done right, they can be incredibly effective in helping to close a sale.
The best customer testimonials are those that are specific, honest, and relatable. They should avoid generalities and instead focus on detailing the particular ways in which your product or service has helped the customer.
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