We launched Report Toaster into the Shopify App Store 4 months ago. During that time we have 35 reviews, all of them 5-stars. After much trial and error, the secret to getting reviews is really no secret at all. It all comes down to customer support.
Inside the Numbers
Before we expand on the importance of support, let's dig into the numbers a bit, cause that's what I do. Our 35 reviews represent 6% of our active user base, which is slightly above the benchmark of 5% that Shopify mentions in this blog post. See the chart below from the SASI Index.
As you can see, once we received our first review, it has been a steady climb. There are definitely ebbs and flows, but we really seemed to hit our stride in August with 22 reviews in 30 days!
The increase in number of reviews is obviously correlated with an increase in installs. But that alone doesn't tell the story. As seen from the chart below, our reviews by percent of users has grown from 3% to above 6%.
All About Support
So if we have a secret, it's just being extremely diligent (i.e. obsessive) about customer support. We provide real-time support via in-app chat, which most of our customers seem to prefer over email. As such, we have some best practices we follow during chat.
Be polite. Always say please, thank you and you're welcome. You are making a first impression and you will likely interact with this person again.
Be honest. We are not trying to be something we are not.
Be enthusiastic!!! Exclamation points and smileys might seem cheesy, but it's the only form of expression we have.
Don't be in a hurry to end the chat. The current chat is your top priority.
Customer feedback is extremely valuable. Whether it's good news or bad news, we can learn from it. So please show gratitude.
Better to do something for them first and teach them later. It keeps them engaged and minimizes frustration.
Usually best to end your reply with some sort of question. This way you make sure they know you expect some sort of response or confirmation. It also keeps them engaged and shows you value their input.
By following these basic principles, customers almost always leave with a positive feeling. In fact, we have never had a poorly rated in-app chat. So how does great customer support correlate to reviews?
After experimenting with different ways to ask for reviews, turns out most of them don't work. Asking for feedback via email or in-app messaging has yielded very little in the way of results.
The one thing that has worked is asking for a review at the end of a successful support session. For us that means solving a problem for a merchant, either via live chat or email. Once the merchant validates the solution, we ask for the review using the following language:
Our success is reliant on your feedback. If you would leave a review for our app it would be much appreciated! You can do that here - https://apps.shopify.com/report-toaster/reviews.
This seems to resonate with customers and falls within the bounds of Shopify's guidelines for soliciting reviews.
But What Does It All Mean, Basil?
As we've pointed out a few times, positive reviews are the biggest factor in driving Shopify app store growth. As we've honed our support techniques, our rate of reviews has increased. Just more proof that good customer support = reviews = growth.