You may know that your products and services are of a high quality, but how do you convince potential customers that they are? Marketing experts have been using social proof techniques for years to communicate product worth and value, and your e-commerce business can too. Keep reading to find out more…

What is social proof?

The Social Proof principle suggests that we form opinions based on the actions of other people. We then take action based on the assumption that those other people are acting correctly. The concept of social proof is not new, in fact, it has been used as a marketing technique for years, but thanks to the power of social media it has come to the attention of many smaller businesses seeking new ways to boost their sales and credibility online.

So what does social proof look like online? Here are a few examples:

Testimonials from industry experts

Often when we are unsure about whether or not to purchase a product or sign up for a service, we seek out expert opinions. When we find a review by a professional involved in a relevant field, we are more likely to trust and rate the product in question. For example, when searching for a sports massage ball, a product with an accompanying review from a qualified physiotherapist would add perceived value to the product being sold.

Celebrity endorsements

Celebrity endorsements, whether paid or unpaid, are guaranteed to get a lot of attention. It doesn’t matter if it’s a paparazzi picture of a celebrity drinking coffee from Starbucks, or Mark Zuckerberg posting a link to a grilling thermometer on Facebook – whenever a celebrity expresses interest in a product or service, brand awareness for the product increases dramatically significantly.

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User-created social proof increases conversion rates. According to one study, 63% of customers are more likely to make a purchase from a site which has user reviews, and product reviews are 12x more trusted than products descriptions from manufacturers.

Suggestions and best sellers

‘Customers who bought this item also bought’ suggestions and bestseller lists (think Amazon and iTunes) appeal to us when we are browsing an e-commerce site because we usually trust the choices made by people who share similar interests and tastes.

How can I use social proof on my e-commerce website?

If you run an e-commerce website and you’re looking for ways to implement a social proof marketing strategy, here are a few suggestions to help you get started:

  • Add positive customer testimonials to your landing page to boost credibility.
  • Invest time into following up positive testimonials and create more in depth case studies for customers to look through.
  • Add a trust seal to your landing page to reassure customers. Having evidence of the security measures your site has in place has the potential to make people feel more confident about sharing sensitive information with you (bank details, etc.)

Read More: How to Choose Between Ecommerce Platforms

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