Do you know Social Proof alone can be the driving force behind your sales on your website? According to TrustPulse 91%, people trust in reviews as much as recommendations from family or friends, 83% people trust in reviews more than advertising, 82% of users specifically seek out negative customer reviews to go further in their buying journey.
Sounds relevant? Keep reading!
What is Social Proof?
Social proof is an outside claim made by a third party who have either bought or used a product/service. Also known as social influence it helps people in their buying journey whether the product or the service offered is accepted by or liked by other people.
This lesson from CXL Institute is taught by Joel Klettke of BusinessCasualCopywriting.com.
He mentions one thing in the very beginning about Social Proofs which I couldn’t agree more on:
Social Proofs are not going away the way we interact with that.
Very true to say that we all love to see what other people think of a product before we actually buy it.
A quick example can be of Amazon or Flipkart. Whenever I buy any product, ( I feel you do the same) I look at what is the average review and if its something below than 3 stars, then it will be hard for me to buy in the first instance or maybe I won’t buy it at all.
Another example can be of any website we visit on a daily basis. Like I visit Detailed.com and soon after visiting their homepage, you can see testimonials from some great SEOs like Matthew Barby, and Eric Siu which makes them more exciting and keep people to stick there for SEO information.
Different Forms of Social Proofs
There are 6 major types of Social Proofs covered by CXL Institute CRO Program which we generally see on every other website. And they are: Case Studies, Customer Reviews, Social Media, Data, Security Icons or Media Features and Testimonials.
1. Case studies
Case-studies are great as they focus on before and after picture. What was the situation before someone used the product and what happened after they use it?
Data-driven case studies are a great way to win more clients as it reflects what you have done for someone and how it can help someone in the same market. This type of social proof is good for Agencies, SaaS and Software companies.
An Example of SEO Case Study by Matthew Woodward
2. Customer Reviews
Okay so it’s not new for me and I think it’s not new for you either. We all see reviews or give reviews for a product or services we have used in the past. Reviews can be a great technical tool for websites that sell products in a highly competitive niche. Landing pages can only do something but when it comes to the technical details and the experiences reviews are the way to go.
I am saying this because as when I was about to buy Mi Scooter 365 Pro, I went through numerous reviews on Reddit, Quora, Facebook and YouTube Videos to see what other people are saying.
In my last blog, I talked about message mining and Product Messaging. This may also help you in message mining and copy tear down to write compelling copy.
3. Social media
Brands have been using the power of influencers on Social Media a lot. And it makes sense as influencer marketing can be cost-effective when it comes to getting celebrity social proof.
It doesn’t always happen on your social media account, you might be just getting mentioned by other people who may have used your product and hence are influencing other people to use it (of course in a situation of positive impact). In case you get a lot of mentions on social media, it’s always good to respond and share it again with your network.
Most recently, SEMRush Certification course is getting a lot of mentions on LinkedIn which indeed can be a great source for SEMRush in future to provide more testimonials on their landing pages and definitely in increasing their brand awareness.
Do you believe in numbers? Well, I do. It’s not surprising for us to sign up for an email newsletter where we see a lot of people already done it because it gives us a sense of authenticity as well as the value we might get back in return.
Look at the example below:
5. Security Icons and Media Features
Trust signals are factors that are usually illustrated on websites and at physical POS in offline stores to help buyers feel more secure in their decision to buy a specific product or service.
You need to let people know in case if your business is recognized by media outlets or publishing companies. This way you will build more trust as these media and publishing companies are authoritative and always links to great content.
This means you are actually associating yourself with the brands and letting the world know that these media companies endorse you/ your business.
Testimonials are the short recommendations from people who have used a certain product and are really happy about it. These can be seen literally found on any website on the internet. Testimonials are a perfect way of showing trust from other people. Like I mentioned above about Detailed.com where Matthew Barby has given a Testimonial for Glen Allsopp which makes not just makes it more legitimate but also creates a sense of urgency to use them (or buy).
Testimonials are simple. We only need A Picture, name, company, role and that’s all. Testimonials are so effective in making your offer credible. It’s not just you saying your product is awesome, there are other people who say the same and hence they back up your claim.
Part of the reason why testimonials are so important is that they help create a deeper, more emotional appeal for your branding.
Negative Reviews Social Proof
Joel Klettke focuses on how we can utilize negative reviews to build positive human authenticity for your brand. Literally there are no products on Earth that are loved by every people and it’s good to feature one of them on your landing page or review page. As all positive reviews will leave people to become suspicious about the product.
Common Mistakes in Including Social Proof
Some of the biggest mistakes in Social Proofs are not using social proof correctly. An example could be of Testimonials, the best way to show a testimonial is by showing a headshot, title, person’s name and Business Website. To make it more credible and believable make sure to link to the business website. Below is an example:
Testimonials are a good way to attract more business but if you do not select your ideal customer chances are your efforts will go in vain.
Many websites have “As Featured in” blocks but if those featured icons are not clickable or linked to where you’ve been mentioned then you’re missing a huge opportunity. Or you’re giving users a signal to doubt. I know you never want to do that.
Social Proof can literally improve your conversions if correctly. Social proof is a very short lesson in CXL Institute CRO Minidegree but this is worth writing about as many startups and businesses can take benefit from social proof marketing.
That’s all for this week’s CXL Review, see you in the next week 🙂