Aug, 5th, 2015

The influence of customer reviews

5 stars
Why does your eCommerce site need customer reviews?

E-consultancy reports that 61% of customers read online reviews before making a purchase decision, and they are now essential for e-commerce sites.

Why you need customer reviews

User reviews increase conversion rates!  They can eliminate any doubts potential customers may have about a product, or can help with product selection.

The SEO benefits of reviews

Improving conversions and customer experience should be the main purpose of user reviews. However, there are considerable benefits for SEO including:

  • Fresh, unique content for search engines
  • Improving rankings for ‘product name’ + review
  • Increased CTR on results pages
  • Long tail targeting
  • Key SEO considerations for user reviews
  • Indexation
  • Non-duplication
  • Breadth of content

Bad reviews are valuable, too

All reviews are valuable, and a mix of positive and negative reviews help to improve consumer trust in the opinions they read.  However, too many bad reviews aren’t always good for business.

How to attract reviews from customers

Ideas include:

  • Use a reviews provider
  • Email customers post-purchase
  • Ask for reviews on product pages
  • Make the process as simple as possible
  • Offer incentives, post-purchase for leaving reviews

How to present reviews and ratings

It’s great to have lots of reviews, but once the number gets to a certain point, it’s important to organise the reviews and help shoppers make sense of them.  Some ideas include:

  • Rate this review / was this helpful?
  • Average review score summaries
  • Use in filtered navigation
  • Online reviews for in-store customers
  • Use charts to display review information
  • Show some detail
  • For travel sites, use TripAdvisor reviews
  • Use reviews in PPC
  • Use them offline

You can read the full article here.

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Jul, 23rd, 2015

11 rule-of-thumb tactics to improve your conversion

A/b testing - fork in the road
CRO is a process; there are no universal rules. However, outlined below are 11 tactics recommended for you to test for yourself, which for us are ‘rule of thumb’ tests:

  1. A static hero image with a single value proposition beats a rotating slider
    Ultimately, users crave control and auto-rotating carousels offer the opposite of that.  The solution? Implement simple, static hero images.
  2. Hamburger icon + ‘Menu’ text beats just Hamburger for mobile menus
    In most cases, using hamburger + a “menu” label usually performs best.  It removes the ambiguity and makes the icon noticeable and intuitive.
  3. A strong and visible value proposition beats having no value proposition
    A value proposition is the primary reason a prospect should buy from you, simply put, it’s the #1 reason someone will continue to read or hit the back button.  A value proposition should convey relevancy, quantifiable value and unique differentiation.
  4. Sticky content beats having call to actions that disappear when you scroll
    On small-screen mobile websites, having a sticky header or footer containing a call to action has consistently increased conversion rates.
  5. Including product videos beats no videos
    Having video usually converts users better than having no video.  This is not just for branding and awareness, but video can actually help move customers down the funnel and convert them.
  6. Removing form fields beats having multiple unnecessary fields
    One sure conversion killer is asking for unnecessary information on forms.  Ask the question “Is this information absolutely necessary to complete the current transaction?” If  you can’t answer “yes” to that question, the form field should be removed.
  7. Prominent contact information beats not having contact information visible
    Even though it seems like a small thing, putting your phone number and email address on the top of your site usually boosts conversions.
  8. Having live chat beats not having live chat
    Live Chat has almost become ubiquitous with good service, and with good reason: live chat usually helps convert.
  9. Trustworthy testimonials beat no testimonials
    Word of mouth is a huge factor in purchase behaviour, displaying testimonials can help drive trust in your site.
  10. Having a guest checkout option beats only having ‘login’ or ‘signup’
    When e-commerce sites force registration, they put up one extra barrier for the customer.  1 in 4 customers leave because of forced registration.
  11. Free shipping usually beats having delivery costs
    Charging for shipping is a conversion killer.  Find strategies to make free shipping profitable for your business.

Read the full article and visual examples at

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Jul, 2nd, 2015

Optimizely benchmark report Q2 2015

Report cover has released its Q2 2015 Benchmark Report – a comprehensive report on how A/B and multivariate testing has changed the way companies create ideal experiences for its customers.  If you have questions around Conversion Optimization, this report will give good insights.

Conversion Optimisation / Experience Optimisation is a fast-growing area of expertise, and is being adopted and resourced as a competitive advantage for marketing, growth, product and engineering-focused organisations around the world. surveyed digital channel owners to uncover just how they think about and allocate resources towards their programs.

This benchmark report answers questions like:

  • How often do teams optimising run A/B and multivariate tests?
  • What are the top benefits that optimisation programs are seeing?
  • How do optimisation teams manage their experiment process?

Download your copy of the Optimizely Benchmark Report here

BONUS Download: Charts from the Optimization Benchmark to use in your next presentation to your team, client, or executive!

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May, 26th, 2015

Why optimisation is the name of the game at First


Digital marketing agency First implements Marin search marketing software to save time and increase conversions

Click here to learn more

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May, 6th, 2015

UNSW Australia Business School awards FIRST SEO account

UNSW Business School has awarded FIRST with its search engine optimisation (SEO) account. UNSW Business School is one of Australia’s leading research and educational institutions, with the latest QS subject rankings revealing it is 12th in the world and number one in Australia for Accounting and Finance.  One of the Business School’s goals is to reach a wider audience of students and scholars, which led them to FIRST to help restructure the website to ensure it’s indexable by search engines for the courses it offers.

Tracy Carter, strategic web platforms manager at UNSW Business School, said: “FIRST has an exceptional team of search consultants who produce results and stay on top of the constantly changing world of SEO.

FIRST is always focused on delivering the best results and providing top-notch customer service, which will allow us at the university to focus on what we do best – teaching students and developing cutting-edge research!

“Students are increasingly choosing Australia’s universities based on the information they can source online so it is essential that UNSW is ranking for the keywords they use, which then takes them to our website which is set up with the best possible user experience and information. That’s why we chose to work with FIRST.”

FIRST will be working closely with UNSW Business School to restructure, redesign and develop its website to increase the site’s ranking for keywords and to ensure the site is fully aligned with its digital strategy.

Senior account director for FIRST, Raphael Pantelis, said: “We are looking forward to working with such a renowned organisation and know that we will help UNSW Business School dominate the Google SERPS by rebuilding their site with the right foundations.  Universities are notorious for working in their own silos, but with the tactics we have planned we are sure to get all divisions of the university standing up to take notice.”

In addition to the SEO work, FIRST and UNSW will be working on other digital projects that will be revealed later down the track, so stay tuned!

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