Writing Product Reviews to Engage and Convert Shoppers: Examples, Tips and Best Practices

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Reviewed products are more likely to sell. That’s because 92% of Americans now read reviews online, and they see reviews as being just like recommendations from friends and family. Customer reviews are a great way for brands to cut through consumer cynicism and make the conversion.

Review posts and articles are also a great way for bloggers, marketers and businesses of all types to increase site traffic and revenue. Knowing how to write a product review is essential to success in those efforts, though. Discover more about types of reviews, reasons why you should write a product review and how to do it below.

We’ll also cover some times for finding skilled product review writers who can do the job for you.

ALSO: Content Marketing for eCommerce: 6 Types of Copy You Need to Succeed

What Are Product Review Posts, and Who Should Write Them?

Numerous types of product reviews exist, including:

  • Consumer reviews, such as those posted on Amazon, wherein people who own or bought the product leave a short review and star rating
  • Expert reviews, such as those written by CNET, wherein writers with knowledge of a certain type of topic review them as a third-party for the purpose of educating consumers
  • Round up or list reviews, such as those provided by Capterra, wherein writers compare a number of similar products to help buyers make a choice
  • Blogger or affiliate marketing reviews, which are written by people who received the product for free or who get some type of commission if you buy the product off of their links

Expert, round up, blogger and affiliate marketer reviews are all ways to monetize content on your site when you aren’t the manufacturer, producer or direct seller of products or services.

Steve Kurniawan, a content and growth strategist at Nine Peaks Media, explains when review posts work and when they may not:

“In my opinion using this approach is only effective when the business is not the producer of the product/service and this is not the only product they sell. For example, if you’re an eCommerce site covering a niche, you can review a lot of related products. You can get revenue either by selling these products yourself or through affiliate marketing.

If you’re the producer of the product/service, people won’t believe your own reviews because they’ll consider them biased, so this can be very counterproductive.”

Examples and Tips for How to Write a Product Review

Before you set up affiliate links or stalk brands on social media in the hopes of becoming an influencer for them, take a look at the examples of review posts below and what you can learn from them.

1. CNET: Expertise and an Easy-to-Read Format

CNET is a go-to resource for many consumers on the prowl for electronics and other technology devices. What sets CNET reviews apart from the crowd is that they are written by people who understand the technology deeply — if not by actual industry insiders. At the same time, CNET marries expertise with a conversational tone and explanations of specs, so anyone reading the reviews can make an informed decision about the products.

Let’s take a look at this CNET review of the Google Nest Hub to get some tips for writing a review.

Product Review example
  • Even before the review article starts, CNET provides a quick summary that consumers can scan for high-level details.
  • CNET never gushes over a product without offering a look at the disadvantages. Remember that no product is perfect, and hyping something without writing a realistic review won’t inspire trust (and thus, conversions). Including the pros and cons of a product or service is important.
  • CNET provides easy-to-access links to reviews of similar products, ensuring consumers can compare options and stay on CNET’s page. That increases the chance that, whatever the consumer ultimately buys, the affiliate link comes from CNET.

2. Capterra: Comprehensive and Convenient

Capterra takes a similar approach with its reviews, providing expert and comprehensive content for the software niche. But Capterra is also known for its lists; if you’re looking for a type of software, you can usually find lists of 10 or even hundreds on Capterra along with reviews, comparison tables and links to the product site.

Consider this page of reviews on applicant tracking software.

The top lesson review writers and publishers should learn from Capterra is that presentation matters. Check out how easy the interface is to use. If people can’t find the product information on your site, they’re not going to fumble around on it forever for the pleasure. Even bloggers should create categories, tags and menus that make it simple to navigate information.

Capterra also provides high-level content with the opportunity for readers to dig deeper as desired. Note that users can see the star ratings and a small blurb for each type of software on the list. They can then choose to:

  • Click on the link to read the full Capterra review for that product
  • Click on the link to go to the product website to make a purchase
  • Add the product to a comparison table to see how it stacks up to other options on the list

It’s always important to present the reader with a great article about the product or service and then get out of the way so they can make a decision about buying. But before you step off stage, follow the Capterra example and leave a link for that purpose, whether it’s to the product on your own site or an affiliate link.

3. Golf Influence: Niche-Based Product Reviews

You don’t have to be a tech or software guru to use this type of content to your advantage. It works with almost any product; Golf Influence does it with golf-related goods.

Check out this article on irons, for example. The site takes a more magazine-style approach, creating a gorgeous review piece that’s full of visuals to support scanning and inspire sharing.

Right away, you get an information-rich graphic that demonstrates the authority and accuracy of the content below it.

Golf Influence presents a comprehensive article, but for consumers with little time or short attention spans, it first calls out a top three of sorts. The table provides some quick tidbits and the all-important affiliate buy link.

Once you get into the meat of the review article, each section is broken up with handy infographics that provide the top talking points, including the pros and cons for each product. Readers can make a decision from that information or click to read more about every option.

Like CNET and Capterra, Golf Influence provides expert, comprehensive product reviews. But it does it with additional graphical style, which increases the opportunities for social shares. This is a great tip for anyone writing product reviews for niches that perform well on Pinterest or Instagram.

4. Bloggers: Personalized Reviews and Recommendations

When bloggers share their personal journeys or use of products, it creates an incredibly authentic product review. While consumers appreciate input from the experts, especially with complex or niche goods, they also like to see how a person like them is able to put the item to use.

Consider this post from Make it with Missy about a NECTAR mattress. It’s a very personable post, including images of her family interacting with the product. Missy also provides a detailed look at how the mattress comes, why it comes packaged the way it does and how you open and set it up. That might seem like a lot of weird pictures for no reason, but if you’re a consumer shopping for this type of mattress, you may wonder exactly how a rolled-up tube becomes a posh memory foam product on your bed. Missy answers those questions to alleviate buyer fears.

Missy also includes a pros list in her review. She tells other consumers exactly how the mattress has helped her.

5. Integrating Video Reviews

Product Review Mom shares her lifestyle in the form of product reviews. As with Make it With Missy, this blog provides super personalized reviews that often give readers a look at how this mom and her family put goods and services to work.

Product Review Mom also does something any reviewer can do: she enhances her content with video in addition to images.

Check out this review for RevAir, for example.

Product Review Mom doesn’t just address the product. She reviews it from the perspective of her needs, which likely resonate with the needs of her target audience. She specifically answers the question whether RevAir works for black kinky/curly hair, which automatically adds value to her review for that target audience. Then, she shows her readers how the product works for that niche by including a video.

ALSO4 Ways to Get Compelling eCommerce Content for Your Brand

Start Writing Product Reviews Today

Product reviews are a great way to increase conversions and revenue for all types of sites. Start writing your own reviews today or connect with freelancers who can get the job done for you.

Lisa Rohner

Article by

As Director of QA/Enterprise Production, Lisa is in the trenches of content marketing everyday. She manages large-scale projects for some of the web's largest etailers, ensuring they get high-quality results on time.

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