How To Write A Powerful Product Review in 8 Simple Steps

helix video customer reviews

The Role of Product Reviews

Product reviews can do much more than just make your product seem enticing; they can boost your product’s image and make it the go-to product. In fact, online reviews are essential to marketing and branding any company these days.

Well, first of all, customers are heavily-dependent on reviews which are often authentic articles written by real users. So, reviews are social proof and help build trust and loyalty.

Second, the more product reviews an item receives, the more transparent it seems and this boosts its credibility. People trust social proof — especially when the review’s author isn’t related to the brand and isn’t anonymous (i.e., can be addressed by name and their social profile can be looked up).

Consequently, if proof of a product’s or service’s quality gets corroborated by multiple and unrelated sources, this positive vibe resonates across the web. This boosts the odds that a prospective buyer will pick that particular product.

Inspire your audience

Application view

Types of customer feedback to consider

1. The Ridge uses third-party review sites

the ridge homepage shogun page builder

Google My Business

Google My Business allows you to register and create a verified account for your ecommerce business so that shoppers can find out your hours, company name, location, phone number, read reviews, and more.

ridge wallet google reviews


ridge wallet amazon reviews

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2. BirdRock Baby showcases trust from independent experts

Indeed, research has shown that independent experts are the third most trusted sources of information (43%). Displaying this type of positive customer review on your website will be appealing to your potential customers.

birdrock baby moccasins reviews publications

3. Wisdom Supply Co. invested in customer interviews and stories

Shogun customer Wisdom Supply Co., a company driven to address plastic pollution, designs products for reuse, repair, and authentic recyclability— products like plastic-free folders and paper-only planners.

They use the power of customer stories to build a sense of community by explaining why people are purchasing their products—to ultimately help reduce waste and better the environment.

wisdom supply customer quotes stories

4. Bombay Hair uses images to display customer’s before and after results

Likewise, 66% of shoppers find the availability of photos from previous shoppers as important when deciding to purchase online—and 62% are more likely to buy a product if they were able to view customer photos.

Bombay Hair, a Shogun customer, displays before and after images of its hair extensions on their customers. With genuine customer images, shoppers get a clear picture of how the hair extensions will look on their hair.

bombay hair before after images

5. ManCave showcases its happy customers with user-generated content

mancave homepage

mancave instagram on store page stories posts

mancave instagram stories

6. Healthy Human promotes direct quotes and testimonials

The effectiveness of customer testimonials and quotes has been proven. When placed alongside more expensive items, they increased conversion rates by 380%, and when placed next to less costly items, the conversion rate increased by 190%.

healthy human customer quotes

How to get customer reviews

Having a couple of reviews published across your brand’s website, social media, and other publications is not enough—you need to have a significant number for your customers to feel they can trust them.

For instance, a survey showed that 70% of users would choose a product with a 4.5-star rating average based on 12 reviews over a product that had a perfect 5-star rating with only two reviews.

customer reviews more reviews preferred to fewer same rating

Today’s customers are more tech-savvy than ever, and with more than 50% of consumers aged 25-34 writing a review of a business or product—there are many ways you can acquire customer reviews.

Incentivize your customers

kate spade incentivize reviews

Make reviews easy to leave

Mack Weldon makes it easy for its customers to leave a review by using a clear and concise email. It makes it obvious that leaving a review won’t take longer than a few seconds of their time and all they need to do is click on one of the stars.

mack weldon make reviews easy to leave

“The best approach to solicit reviews is simply to make it easy for them to leave a review. So, offering the option right away with a link to a feedback survey or shooting an email immediately after the purchase to leave a review. Your marketing strategy could also include offering review incentives like discounts for leaving a product review.” Stacey Kane, Business Development Lead at EasyMerchant

Use surveys to get responses

withings customer surveys

Step 3: Choose Products to Review

Shipping boxes on conveyor

Remember the formula “feeling + thinking = purchase”? Here’s the “thinking” part.

Products You Use

It will be very important when you write a product review that you have this information at hand. So don’t just think about it — write it down.

If this is a product you’ve created yourself, or an affiliate link to a product you own and use, it’s a fairly straightforward process. You’re giving your personal feedback on the product: not just its features, but authentic information about how it helped you in real life. If you’re new to affiliate marketing, Miles Beckler covers “how to be authentically helpful” in his affiliate marketing crash course.

If there are more, that’s also fine, but bear in mind you don’t want to overload your customer with information. What she’ll want to know most is how this product addresses her most pressing problem, need or desire.

Case Study: Translating Product Features Into Benefits

Pasta Machine Product Review Example with image of egg and flour

My Italian friends cannot believe that anyone would want to buy an electric pasta machine at relatively high cost when a bowl, a table and a rolling pin do exactly the same job at less than one-tenth of the price.

But the most obvious, and best, feature of the pasta machine is that it automates the process. Flour, egg and water go in. 35 minutes later, push a button and pasta comes out the other end.

And the greatest benefit is one we can all relate to: a saving of time. A working parent of two toddlers may want to give the family fresh pasta for dinner, but time is against her.

What does she feel about that? Perhaps frustrated. Guilty that she’s not able to be a “perfect parent.” Tired, if she tries to make pasta anyway… Stressed, because (at least in her mind) other parents seem to manage to provide healthful meals every day.

Why? Because there are too many fake reviews out there that praise products, mentioning no drawbacks. That’s doing a huge disservice to customers — and will dispel any trust you’ve built up.

Chicken egg hatching

As well as thinking about the positives, consider whether there are any negatives in the product. It may be a missing feature, or a high price. It may be something very specific to the product: for one of my chicken incubators, for example, it’s the fact that high humidity causes some of the moving parts to rust.

If you’re reviewing your own product and it’s already live, look at what your customers are saying. If they’ve not said anything negative, ask them. Questions like “how do you think this product could be improved?” or “what’s the one thing you’d change about it?” are a good starting point.

If it’s an affiliate product and you can’t think of any cons of the product, look at some reviews. Amazon is a rich source of information. Review all the reviews: one or two stars are the obvious ones to read but sometimes reviews of 3 or 4 stars can give more nuanced problems people have come up against.

If you draw a blank, look for reviews from people who’ve used the product and found it lacking but have overcome the obstacles. Are their solutions something you could also offer to your customer?

Task 2: Think through the potential negatives of the product you want to review and consider potential solutions to those drawbacks. Don’t forget to use the worksheet to keep specific notes.

What If You’ve Never Owned the Product or Tried the Service?

Writing about a product we own and love is obviously the best type of review. But we don’t always have the luxury of testing every product we think will meet our customer’s needs. I don’t have the money, the time or the inclination (well — maybe the inclination…) to try out all of Italy’s best hotels to review for my site.

Be careful about this. People’s memories can be selective, and individuals have differing ideas about what’s a necessary feature. Not everyone thinks having six kinds of tea in their hotel room is critical to their enjoyment of Florence.

Why? Because reviewers have written reviews not to offer help to prospective customers but to make competitors look worse. It’s particularly prevalent in the hotel and restaurant industry.

Amazon and Expedia have become better at preventing fake reviews. They highlight those from people who have bought the product or stayed at the hotel. They’ve also prosecuted when they’ve found proven fake-ness — but the problem is still there.

Step 4: Time To Write A Product Review

1. Choose a Keyword

Example of a search bar

Solo Build It!’s keyword brainstorming tool can help you research the most popular keywords.

2. Create the Main Headline

Refer to the information you’ve gathered in your how to write a product review worksheets, because your headline must address your customer’s biggest problem, most desperate need, or most wanted desire.

Suppose you’re offering a program for your customer to cut down on her sugar intake. If you know that what she’s searching for is “sugar detox” then the question “Been eating too much sugar recently?” will hook her.

3. Draft Subheadings

Your subheadings also need to demand attention and convey value. They have a double imperative: to make clear why the text below is a must-read, and to stop your customer from scrolling endlessly — and leaving the page without buying.

4. Write the Content

Geometric pegs and holes

The first paragraph is the most important in the entire review. Your customer will decide that either you understand where she’s at and can do something to help, or you have no idea and she should look elsewhere.

Your headline referred to her main problem. Now tell her that you know how she feels, and that you know of something that can help. Start to lead her through that door she thought was locked.

Case Study

  • To be effective, your review must focus on your customer, not on you. Seth Godin calls this “the only radio station people care about — “WII-FM,” aka “What’s in it for me?”!
  • Do not start your review page with the price of the product. Talk first about the specific benefits, until your customer feels she has no real option but to buy your product.
  • Remember: you’re not writing a thesis or a scholarly report. The way you learned to write at school or college is not the best way to connect with people, unless you’re in a scholarly niche.
  • Keep sentences short. They’re easier to read and understand, and they improve the rhythm of the page.
  • Don’t worry about starting sentences with “and” or “but.” If that’s the way you would talk to the customer if she was sitting in front of you, use it.
  • If you want to really draw attention to a particular feature, try adding in individual words. Take an example from Apple’s ad for the iPhone X…

Iphone X. Soon.

If you feel unwell one day, schedule your review for the next. But do not use this as an excuse to avoid writing at all! Every day you put off writing is a day’s potential income lost. It’s important to develop work habits and regularly make time to sit down and write.

Case Study: How to Write a Product Review Outline

writing a product review outline for rat trap

emotional benefits to include in product review

What If You Haven’t Tried the Product?

5. Find Images, Testimonials and Ratings


Although you’re communicating key messages in your headlines, subheadings and text content, images can help sell a product. They help break up the text, they provide an emotional connection, and they show what the product looks like and how it works.

Two women on a pool toy taking a selfie

Product images are always good, and if you can include yourself in the image unpacking, assembling, holding or using it, so much the better. It helps create that personal connection — and shows it’s an authentic review.

Be creative! Do you make and sell your own products or provide a service? Take a photo of you painting / quilting / cooking / dancing / counselling / with a patient (don’t want to ask permission? Get your partner to play the patient, sitting with back to the camera so the focus is on you).

Remember: images are not only photos. Research shows that about 90% of customers say that video helps them make purchasing decisions, and roughly 64% say that they’re more likely to buy a product online after they’ve seen a video of it.