When was the last time you went out for a nice meal, or booked a hotel stay without looking at the reviews of the restaurant and hotel in advance? Well, it was probably a while ago, before the importance of social proof came into the picture. Reviews give us confidence that we have chosen wisely and can prevent us from making a mistake.
What Is Social Proof?
Social proof is based on the idea of normative social influence, which states that people will conform in order to be liked by, similar to or accepted by the influencer, or society.
We can also relate to social proof as the “force” that influences us every day when it comes to decision making. Social proof exists because people tend to group together in society.
People around us, in real life and on social media platforms, constantly influence us on what choices to make.
No matter how big or small our decisions are, we are being pushed in a certain direction and are, in one way or another, seeking approval that it was the right choice.
Social proof is an incredibly strong force when it comes to influencing our behaviors.
We are pack animals, no matter how independent we think we are, unless you live in a cave, you are conditioned by other people around you.
Pay attention to these statistics:
- Over 70% of Americans say they look at product reviews before making a purchase.
- Nearly 63% of consumers indicate they are more likely to purchase from a site if it has product ratings and reviews.
This clearly speaks for the power of social proof, and the fact that people seek validation before making a decision.
Wikipedia explains the concept of social proof like this:
“Social proof, also known as informational social influence, is a psychological phenomenon where people assume the actions of others reflect correct behavior for a given situation. This effect is prominent in ambiguous social situations where people are unable to determine the appropriate mode of behavior, and is driven by the assumption that surrounding people possess more knowledge about the situation”.
11 Top Social Proof Strategies
Below follow the 11 top strategies on how to take advantage of social proof:
- Highlight customer reviews on your website and social media accounts.
- Use testimonials.
- Create case studies.
- Share your company milestones.
- Display social likes and shares.
- Display social share count.
- Always be responsive to comments and customer reviews.
- Use facebook, twitter, or instagram advertising.
- Use trust symbols on your website.
- Try getting celebrity or influencer endorsements.
- Use social proof on your ad copy.
- ♦♦♦ Use the Proof software and you do not have to care about most of the above strategies (find more information about Proof further down).
- The number of views the product has received.
- How many orders of the product was made.
- How many views the product has.
- The number of customer reviews.
- The rating of the seller, based on customer reviews.
The Importance Of Social Proof For
The most important aspect for building social proof is a great product. Having that, plus people confirming it really is a great product, is a huge advantage for the brand, product, or service credibility.
Social proof is an endorsement that says that this company, service, or product is great, and that the overall customer journey has satisfied previous shoppers.
The very presence of social proof makes a business more trustworthy because social proof, by definition, comes from customers, not the business itself.
The Reason That Social Proof Is So Important Nowadays Is That 84% Of Consumers Do Not Trust Advertisements Anymore
Social proof allows companies to take advantage of external validation in order to influence potential customers. Let me present an example of the power of social proof from a Wall Street Journal study:
A study conducted by the Wall Street Journal focused on how to persuade customers to decrease their energy use in the summer by turning to fans instead of air conditioners. Consumers were told they would save $54 a month, that it was socially responsible, that it would prevent the release of more than 262 pounds of greenhouse gases monthly, and that 77% of their neighbors had already started using fans.
The majority of individuals, who agreed to switch to fans admitted they were doing so because their neighbors already had. This is a great example of how persuasive social proof can be” says Mat Carpenter, ShipYourEnemiesGlitter.
Social Proof Is Important For Business Owners Because It Is Such An
Influential Selling Tool
Social proof also earns better SEO (rankings on Search Engines) and adds more favorable language surrounding your brand online.
For example, to get comments on your blog and actively respond to them, send Google (and other search engines) the message that your website is active and provides important, relevant information to its visitors. Google will then prioritize your website in the organic search rankings.
How To Handle Negative Social Proof
Negative social proof WILL happen sooner, or later, if you are running a business. It does not have to be a measure of poor skills, a bad product, or an incomplete service. Sometimes things go wrong.
Mistakes can happen even for the best, most monetized business, and people are always going to love speaking their mind, and leave feedback, whether it is good or bad.
The question is, how to deal with negative social proof, like bad reviews, or comments, when they happen?
My best advice is to take action and always respond to negative feedback. Often, the business owner/seller has a totally different viewpoint on what happened, and can complement with their explanation.
Future customers will then see that the business is active, and take responsibility for their actions and customer relationships.
Maybe, a potential customer reading the negative feedback, actually understands how this mistake could happen and gives the company a chance anyhow.
Then, if this customer has a positive experience and leave their feedback, you have turned negative social proof into positive, which is a win win.
Social Proof Made Easy – Instantly Boost Your Website Conversions With
Proof is a subscription software that helps business owners increase their conversions and sales through the awesome power of social proof, which we touched base on earlier.
Proof is the single most impactful software you could add to your website to increase leads and sales. It allows you to display real-time customer activity notifications on your website and let your existing customers sell for you.
Proof offers a Free 14-Day Trial, so you can try it out before subscribing.
Social Proof Works Better With Photos!
Did you know that testimonials are more likely to be believed when they are accompanied by a corresponding picture?
This is a known fact from social research, and is exactly what is provided with the Proof software.
Check out an example of Proof in action:
You can also use the Proof app to display:
♦ Hot Streaks
Show the total number of people who have signed up or purchased recently on your site.
♦ Live Visitor Count
Show how many people are currently viewing the page or your entire site in real-time.
♦ Recent Activity
Show the stream of people who have recently signed up or purchased on your site.
Proof Offers 3 Monthly Subscriptions/Plans
Real Social Proof By Proof
If you are still not convinced, here are some case studies of high converting landing pages, registrations, and checkouts using Proof:
Tools Needed To Increase Conversions
Proof offers all tools needed to convert traffic into customers:
Start Your Free 14-Day Trial And Get A Bonus
Why complicate things, and spend extra time, when it can be so easy using the social proof app!
Please give me some social proof;-)
About The Author
My name is Stina Pettersson. I am the founder of Make A Living From Home and Get Happy e-Deals. I am the author of the articles on this site. Originally from Sweden, but love the warm weather in Florida where I now reside.
I help people to start their own online business and make a living from home. I am especially fond of helping people interested in eCommerce – Amazon FBA, Dropshipping and Online Retail to get started and make a good living from home.
I hope I will get the honor to help YOU achieving your online success.
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