Written in collaboration with Okendo
In today’s digital age, online reviews from real customers have surpassed word of mouth as the ultimate driver of social proof. In fact, numerous studies have shown that over 90% of consumers make the effort to read reviews before buying products. Furthermore, research from McKinsey has shown that incremental improvements in ratings and reviews can drive explosive growth for products—upwards of 200% depending on the category. To put it simply, reviews drive confidence, and confidence converts.
With the ultra competitive landscape that exists today, it has become more important than ever before to acquire the ability to collect and leverage reviews to grease the purchase funnel and send customers along a frictionless buyer’s journey.
But just as consumers have numerous choices when it comes to the ecommerce merchants they purchase from, online sellers also have multiple options for review platforms.
Enter Okendo, a customer marketing platform that is setting the new standard for cultivating consumer trust and boosting conversion rates. Through integrations with leading marketing and ecommerce tech providers, an insistence on customized solutions and unending client support, and near countless success stories from high-growth retailers, Okendo has emerged as a disruptor in the space, and one that continues to give competitors a serious run for their money.
Stairway to CEO guests like BruMate, Carbon 38, and Byte, have joined the ranks of Okendo. But why, more specifically, are so many other brands ditching their previous review platforms in favor of Okendo? Let’s take a closer look at just a few reasons:
While advancements in technology have produced a number of innovative tools for those selling online, many platforms available today can actually introduce more challenges than solutions. This is primarily because businesses are often already utilizing a mix of platforms and services that have become integral to their operations, and although additional tools may be attractive, they won’t always integrate seamlessly with an organization’s broader tech stack.
Just ask Irene Falcone, founder of Sans Drinks, a popular DTC non-alcoholic beverage company based in Australia. Falcone realized the importance of providing social proof of her product’s quality through customer reviews, but after working with one of Okendo’s competitors to optimize review generation, she was frustrated to find that the platform didn't integrate well with the company’s email marketing platform of choice, Klaviyo.
Put simply, the platform being used didn’t allow for seamless communication with Klaviyo, preventing critical Review Requests and other post-purchase messages from being triggered and executed in real-time. The company needed these solutions to work in tandem, which would enable social proof and review generation to be a self-running system.
After learning about Okendo’s Klaviyo integration and deciding to migrate to our platform, Sans Drinks achieved the seamless interoperability between the two tools that it was looking for. Today, the company not only benefits from a perfectly optimized and automated email flow, but also generates 6x the reviews it was able to capture using the previous solution.
Importantly, Okendo’s integrative capacity is far from limited to Klaviyo, and our clients also benefit from seamless interoperability with a number of other leading software solutions, including Attentive, LoyaltyLion, Gorgias, and Shopify Plus, to name a few.
Optimizing all aspects of the user experience as it relates to the review process is absolutely critical. And, considering that 80% of reviews today are being submitted from mobile devices, it’s reasonable to conclude that a fast, frictionless mobile experience is a must-have when it comes to boosting reviews and other types of UGC (User Generated Content).
Take it from Nick Bowersox, founder of MNML, a fast-growing DTC fashion brand focused on delivering minimalist staples at affordable prices. Before migrating to Okendo, MNML experienced a well-deserved bout of explosive growth and mainstream recognition, after which it became clear that its review platform wasn’t equipped to scale at pace with the company.
In addition to familiar integration issues, MNML was working on a platform that lacked the necessary features to provide an intuitive mobile experience. But once Okendo stepped in, the company was able to leverage our mobile-optimized review capture forms, providing consumers with an experience that is not only frictionless, but highly personalized. Moreover, MNML now had access to a mobile-first solution that could actively incentivize richer customer reviews through tiered coupon offerings.
The result? A more than 1200% boost in review generation, and according to Bowersox, Okendo is now a “key platform for providing product-specific social proof to [the company’s] prospective customers.”
Okendo isn’t a one-size-fits-all review platform. Rather, it is designed with ultimate flexibility in mind so as to offer individual solutions that fit an organization's unique needs. This is delivered through a combination of customizable features and integrations, with the only real constant being unmatched levels of speed and performance.
Like our competitors, Okendo utilizes widgets to prompt and facilitate reviews, but where other platforms offer standardized versions that can negatively impact load times, our widgets leverage custom, lightweight scripts to minimize such impacts, and intelligently pre-render and load review pages on-demand. Additionally, Okendo allows brands to bring their reviews to life with user-generated content (UGC) from real customers in the form of photos and videos. Not only is this a more cost-effective and low-lift way to market your product, but it’s also more authentic than highly polished photos and videos produced by a brand.
In the case of Scotch Porter, an affordable, luxury grooming brand for men, it was less about merely generating additional reviews and more about optimizing the user experience to encourage richer feedback and capture insights more efficiently. More specifically, the brand was looking to bolster existing generation efforts through the integration of SMS messaging software.
Since Scotch Porter was already using Postscript, a top SMS marketing app for Shopify stores, we introduced the company to our own individualized Postscript integration, made possible by Okendo's Sequence technology. This allowed the brand to effectively double down on review generation by leveraging an optimized SMS approach, leading to a 12% increase in an already impressive review generation rate, a 40% increase in review request click rate, and a significantly improved customer experience.
But most importantly, according to Scotch and Porter’s founder Calvin Quallis, leveraging the platform allowed the company to save money while also converting customer reviews into actual sales.
“By switching to Okendo, we’ve increased our ROI on customer reviews by at least 5X, a combination of [the platform’s] better performance and lower subscription fees.”
In order to sell successfully online today, brands need to create differentiated experiences. When reviews are used the right way they allow merchants to tailor highly personalized experiences that compel buying action. However, it takes a different kind of review platform to seamlessly plug into an organization's tech stack, offer an unparalleled UX, and adapt to the ever evolving needs of a scaling business.
Written in collaboration with Okendo, the customer marketing platform that builds connections between consumers and the brands they love. Retailers that use Okendo have seen an 81% increase in conversion rate. If you want to join the ranks of brands like BruMate, Carbon 38, Byte, and Magic Spoon, click HERE to get 30 Days Free with Okendo.
Welcome to the second edition of Stairway to CEO's Holiday Gift Guide! This year we have an even better list than we did our first go around last year, as we have added 52 brands to our guest roster. We’ve had an incredible year filled with some of the best interviews from top Founders and CEOs of today’s leading direct-to-consumer brands. We have a lot of amazing gift ideas for you and we’ll be sure to cover everyone you’re shopping for, so let’s get started!
I can’t believe we’re nearing the end of the year. With only two months left, we’re entering the madness season with all the holidays, dinners, parties, and more. We hope you stick around for the exciting things we have planned here at Stairway, including our 2nd annual Top 10 Gifts of the year! Though we won’t be covering that today, we will be taking a look back at October and the four amazing guests we had on the show, while also taking a look into what November offers.