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Reviews: Metrics & Optimizations
Reviews: Metrics & Optimizations
Written by Chris MaGill
Updated over a week ago

In this article, we will cover the main metrics and optimizations used to measure and improve the health of your Okendo Reviews program. While several metrics can be collected about reviews, they can be consolidated into the following three categories:

In this article, we'll cover:


1. Review Rate

  • Typically Defined as the ratio of reviews collected to orders placed in a given time frame. You can monitor this rate to ensure you are collecting a steady stream of reviews and, ideally, can increase this rate over time.

    Review Rate = (Reviews Collected/Orders Placed) x 100

NOTE: Review Rate, as calculated above, is a good general measure to check how your review volume is trending, but it is important to remember there is a bit of a delay between orders being placed vs. when review requests are made. Because of this, if you experience a large increase or decrease in order volume it can skew your review rate from month to month. If solely using Okendo’s built-in emails to send review requests, an alternate method to calculate review rate is emails sent divided by orders placed.

2. Engagement Performance

  • This looks at the on-site interactions that customers have with Okendo Reviews widgets. This can currently only be measured if the GA4 integration is enabled. Please review the definitions of interactions found in this support article – specifically the General Definitions.

3. Conversion Rate

  • This simple calculation looks at the total conversions (count of sales made) divided by the total website visitor count. Currently, we also rely on GA4 for this data.

We will discuss several optimizations to improve each metric. However, it is important to note that these metrics can also be viewed as falling into two distinct categories:

  1. Review Collection (Review Rate)

  2. On-site Metrics (Engagement Performance & Conversion Rate)

Making this distinction is helpful as it will aid in understanding which features and functionalities to look into when making optimizations. In other words, for Review Rate, you will need to focus on areas like Review Request Emails, the Response Form, and Sequences. Whereas for Engagement and Conversion Rate you will need to focus on the design and setup of Okendo’s on-site widgets. Understating this distinction is important–especially for the latter two metrics since there is significant overlap between the two when it comes to optimizations that can improve both metrics.


Review Rate

When looking to improve your review rate, typically you’ll look for ways to collect more reviews. We usually see a benchmark review rate of 2.5-5% for merchants, with our top 10% of merchants pulling in a 22% review rate. If you are below benchmark, you want to look for optimizations. And even if you are performing well, you may still want to implement some of the recommendations below:

  • Ensure the Review Request Email design is on-brand and well-designed: This means the product(s) that need to be reviewed should be the focal point of the email. The rest of the copy should be clear and concise, and there should be no other CTAs, such as links to top products or social media pages. Keeping the design on-brand ensures that customers are not confused who the email is coming from and they trust it is being sent from a legitimate source.

  • Ensure the Review Request Email timing makes sense: The most effective emails are those that are sent at the right time with the right message. This thinking extends to review requests as well. If a review request is sent too early, a customer may not have had a chance to use the product or see its results (depending on the type of product in question). Conversely, if the request is sent too late, the excitement surrounding the product may have worn off to the point where the customer is no longer inspired to leave a review. Because of this, you should test the timing of your review request emails to maximize engagement. An effective way to time review requests is to use the delivery option instead of setting a standard delay after fulfilment. Set the sequence wait block to “x” days after delivery. You’ll need to determine timing based on when customers typically have had a chance to get use out of your product. For example, shoes can likely be reviewed just a few days after delivery, but a supplement may take several more days or weeks for customers to start seeing results.

  • Send follow-up review requests: To expand on the idea of correctly timing requests, follow-up (reminder) emails are an effective way to remind customers about the opportunity to leave a review. A customer may not be ready to leave a review after the first email is sent, or they simply may forget after seeing the first request. Regardless of the reason for not leaving a review, using a sequence that includes a reminder helps increase the odds that a customer will follow through with the process. If you don’t already have a reminder email set up, try adding it a week after the first request goes out. Measure how the email performs and test different intervals to see what your customers respond to best.

  • Utilize additional review request channels: In addition to the right message needing to be sent at the right time; it also needs to be sent through the right channel. While email is very effective for review requests, SMS is a much more personal, high-engagement channel. By sending multiple messages through both email and SMS, the odds of getting a customer to leave a review are greatly increased. Our integrations with Klaviyo, Attentive, and Postscript all allow merchants to send review requests via SMS.

  • Incentivize customer reviews: By offering a reward or loyalty points, you can further incentivize customers to leave a review. Incentives increase the likelihood a customer will leave a review and will therefore increase their overall review rate.

    • If you don’t have a loyalty program, you can utilize our built-in reward coupons.

    • If using Okendo Loyalty or one of our integrations with providers such as or Loyalty Lion, you can opt to reward points in exchange for customer reviews.

      • In addition to rewarding points for the review itself, customers can earn points for connecting their social profile, adding a photo, or adding a video.

    • Another less common (and more manual tactic) is to incentivize reviews with a sweepstakes or prize drawing.

      • For example, a merchant may entice customers to leave reviews by saying that each month they will pick one reviewer for a shopping spree or a gift card.

      • This can sometimes be a more economical approach compared to giving rewards for each review, but it is important to note that you as the merchant are fully responsible for ensuring the sweepstakes/promo is in compliance with your region’s legal rules/regulations.

  • Utilize post review modules: As part of the Response Form flow, merchants can leverage the post review page to capture additional reviews. There are several post review modules available, but specifically for increasing reviews, Okendo offers modules encouraging both additional reviews (if the customer has multiple products available to review), as well as site reviews if the merchant would like to collect reviews pertaining to the customer’s overall experience with the brand.

  • Perform a lookback: If you are just launching your review program or your program has been paused for an extended period of time, Okendo offers the option to perform a lookback when starting a new review request Sequence. This enables you to select a date in the past–even several months ago–and Okendo will recruit those orders into the review request sequence.

  • Initiate a Targeted Send: If you are looking to target a very specific segment of customers who have not left a review–especially for a product that you’d like to collect more reviews for–you can initiate a targeted send. This process manually places customers into a review request sequence and requires a ticket with our support team to complete. They can walk you through the information needed to properly execute

  • Integrate with Shop App: Your customers are able to leave reviews via Shopify’s Shop App. Enabling this integration will not only syndicate reviews from the Shop App to your store, but it will also syndicate reviews to the Shop App.

  • Bonus: Take advantage of additional integrations to expand your reviews presence across the web and social media.

Engagement Performance

As mentioned in the introduction above, the Google Analytics integration is required to truly measure customer engagement with review widgets. Therefore, the top recommendation, before looking at any other optimizations, is to get the Google Analytics integration set up. That being said, even without data from GA, the optimizations below are still applicable to any review program.

  • Utilize as many on-site review widgets as possible: A great way to increase engagement is to surface review widgets at the right moments during a shopper’s journey. In most cases, a default setup for your store should include:

    1. Reviews Widget on PDPs (product display pages)

    2. Star ratings on collection pages

    3. Star ratings at the top of PDPs

Additionally, we highly encourage you to:

  1. Add a Review Carousel, Media Carousel, or Media Grid to the home page. This showcases your best-rated products and starts building trust with shoppers through social proof right from the very first page they land on.

  2. Make reviews persistently visible by enabling the Reviews Tab which can be accessed by shoppers on nearly any page of your site.

  3. Add the Reviews Badge to the footer of the site. This is another persistent placement that showcases your overall product rating and builds trust with shoppers unfamiliar with the brand.

  4. Create a dedicated reviews page (DRP). As the name suggests, this is a page you can set up for the sole purpose of showcasing all reviews from your entire product line. You can add a link to this in your footer, and if you allow Google to index it, it provides the added bonus of increasing SEO rankings.

  • Enable Q&A for the Reviews Widget: By enabling Q&A, you are opening up an additional channel for personalized shopper engagement. This not only allows customers to engage directly with your brand, but it also gives you a way to publicly interact with customers. Publishing questions and posting replies builds trust with shoppers as it shows you are willing to take time to address customer concerns. Q&A also has the added benefit of helping customers make more informed buying decisions since it is likely that if one customer has a question, others may also have the same question; having an answer to that question publicly posted can help mitigate common reasons a shopper may not convert.

  • Enable Filters & Free Text Search: Enabling both of these options, by nature, opens up more ways for shoppers to interact with reviews (increased engagement) and also makes it easier for shoppers to make more informed buying decisions. For example, for a customer who wants to see what a product looks like in real life, adding filters can help them view all reviews containing UGC. Or, for a customer who wants to see if other buyers mention a specific keyword, adding the free text search gives them the ability to quickly find what they’re looking for, rather than having to scroll through every review.

Conversion Rate

Again, as mentioned above, the best insights for conversion rates come from our integration with Google Analytics. It is also important to reiterate that there is significant crossover between tactics that increase engagement and tactics that increase conversion rate. Many of the recommendations below can also be applied to the section above and vice versa. For example, enabling Q&A, Filters, and Free Text Search all help shoppers make more informed buying decisions, which in turn leads to better conversion rates.

  • Design widgets to be on-brand: Adding to the idea above regarding using as many widgets as possible, it is important to be intentional about your widget designs. Poorly designed widgets are not conducive to engagement, and if customers don’t engage with reviews widgets they won’t be armed with social proof to help them in their shopping journey (in other words, conversion rates will suffer). Okendo’s Widget Plus design tool makes it easy to build and style highly engaging, on-brand reviews widgets.

  • Moderation Matters: It is important to remember to moderate reviews and Q&A. If you have dozens or hundreds of pending reviews/questions then you’ll need to consider how you can optimize your moderation process. The easiest ways to stay on top of moderation are to ensure you have configured your auto-publishing settings, or to set aside adequate time each week to manually moderate any pending items. You can also turn on notifications in Okendo (Settings > Notifications). The more reviews and answers that are posted, the more well-informed shoppers can be regarding their purchasing decisions.

  • Collect & Display Attributes: Collecting and displaying attributes gives shoppers access to another layer of insights. Demographic attributes give shoppers the ability to filter through the reviews of customers who, for example, are in the same age range or size as them. If a shopper sees insightful or positive reviews from existing customers who are just like them, it can help them be more confident in buying the product for themselves. Likewise, product-based attributes, like taste or sizing accuracy, can add a layer of trust that you as a brand can’t provide on your own. It’s one thing as a store to say a product tastes amazing or to provide a sizing guide, but it’s a whole different experience for shoppers to hear it from actual customers. All that said, it’s important to remember there is a balance between having too few and too many attributes. A general recommendation is to include 3-5 required attributes as to not cause too many drop-offs which impact review rate.

  • Display Aggregates: In line with displaying attributes, it’s important to summarize those attributes at the top of your Review Widget by using aggregate displays. For example, going back to the idea of collecting size attributes, you can show an aggregate so shoppers can see if the fit is too big, too small, or just right across all reviews. The aggregate display at the top is also a great way for your brand to highlight UGC and give shoppers a snapshot of things like the overall average rating distribution.

  • Display UGC: Make sure you do not have UGC hidden. As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words, so displaying UGC in addition to written reviews goes a long way to further build social proof and drive conversions. If you have concerns about displaying UGC, remember that auto-publish settings can be configured so that reviews with images still require manual review. That way, no unsightly or irrelevant images or videos are published. You can also select to publish a review but hide individual pieces of UGC submitted for that review.

  • Utilize Grouping: There’s nothing that kills conversions quite like a product with few reviews or no reviews at all. While for some products this is unavoidable–at least when they are new–in many cases you may have similar variants of products that do have reviews. By taking advantage of review groups in Okendo, you can help bolster the number of reviews shown on each product page. A great example where grouping is helpful is if you sell an item in several different colors or sizes. One or a few colors/sizes may have several reviews, while other colors/sizes don’t have any reviews at all. However, by using grouping, reviews can still be shown for those less-reviewed variants.

  • Use Syndication: If you have several storefronts, you can utilize syndication (enabled via Okendo Support) to share reviews across sites. This is especially helpful if you have a “main” store where the bulk of its reviews are received and published, and other stores where there is less traffic. By using syndication, you can leverage the success of your larger store(s) to help prop up the reviews across all storefronts.

  • Consider Review Seeding for new products: As mentioned above, products with no reviews at all are not conducive to higher conversion rates. Instead of releasing a new product with 0 reviews, consider reaching out to your top customers and sending them the new product for free or at a steep discount; then ask for reviews before it is available to the general public. This allows you to get early feedback and can help validate your product. It also affords you an opportunity to make any adjustments necessary before the product is ready for the masses. Once released, shoppers will be able to see there are already credible reviews for the product from day one, adding social proof and therefore increasing conversions.

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