If you closely follow Twitter you must know about a Nigerian lady that recently broke her story about her horrible experience as a tourist in Zanzibar, Tanzania. Her name is Zainab Oladehinde and her experience occurred in April 2021. She said that she was sexually assaulted and almost raped whilst at Warere Beach Hotel in Nungwi, Zanzibar. She said the hotel authorities were not forthcoming in addressing here issue. It is a long story, check out her Twitter thread here.

Her experience led people to pass over 13 000 negative reviews for Warere Beach Hotel. In no time their ratings plummeted from around 4.5 out of 5 to almost nothing. The hotel later said they did their investigation and Google removed the ‘fake’ reviews. My point here though is to show you how influential customer testimonials can be. That lady’s customer testimonial was enough to tarnish the brand. Today I want us to look at some examples of effective customer testimonials. (These examples are meant to illustrate the basic principles that inform effective customer testimonials):

Example One

40 Percent Increase In Website Conversions

“Working with Webdev Zimbabwe was (and still is) a great experience. Since re-launching our website with their design ideas, services, and recommendations, Clirtual Assist has experienced a 40 percent increase in web conversions.”

Clive Masarakufa, CEO, Clirtual Assist

This would be perfect for use on a company’s website.

Example Two

“It is minimalistic, ergonomic, and aesthetic. It does what it is supposed to do, hassle-free. It is fluid and so comfortable to use. Great app! I would vouch for it any day.” – Tinaye Chikomba

This one can be as a Google Review or maybe on an app store.

Example Three

“I have sensitive skin, most products damage my skin. It made me feel so frustrated but thanks to SkinVerse, the only product that suits all skin types. It gives me the best look with no side effects. I happily recommend this product to anyone looking to make their skin flawless.” – Kelly Tshepiso Isaacs

This one can be used on a website or even as a post or comment on social media.

Why Are Those Examples Of Effective Customers Testimonials?

Those customer testimonials demonstrate what an effective testimonial ought to be like. They are specific, personal, short (not more than 50 words), direct, and authentic. They contain a headline, company name, person’s name, their title, and a keyword(s) or phrase. The keyword(s) or phrase is instrumental in search engine optimization (SEO). Including the company logo of the testifier just before the headline also makes a customer testimonial effective.

Furthermore, including the actual picture of the testifier just beside their name also increases the effectiveness. Studies have shown that the inclusion of logos and faces increases authenticity. I illustrated that in the first example but it can apply as well to the other examples.

These testimonials’ content covers the customer’s challenge, how the service or product solved it, what makes the solution unique, and whether the customer had a good user experience. That is what makes a customer testimonial effective.

Important To Consider

I focused on just one type of customer testimonials in this article – quote testimonials; they are the most popular. However, there are several more different types of testimonials. These are social media post or comment testimonials, video testimonials, audio testimonials, image testimonials (e.g. before and after scenarios), case study testimonials, interview testimonials, and authority testimonials (e.g. influencers, industry experts). You can explore diversifying your customer testimonials by trying out more than one. Regardless of which type you use, the principles of specificity, personalization, shortness, being direct, and authenticity still apply.

As a business or startup, you must encourage good customer testimonials. The tried and tested way to achieve that is by delivering exceptional customer service. Then of course you request your satisfied customer to write reviews. Nowadays due to the proliferation of eCommerce and digital marketing, social proofs are now paramount for many shoppers. Most people (over 85 percent) prefer to only buy something when many people are recommending it. When other people who have bought or used it, speak positively or negatively about a product or service that is social proof. Social proof is now a huge driver (by over 250 percent) of conversion rates. That is why as an enterprise, you need to have good customer testimonials regarding your brand.