Using Testimonials on Your Website

Testimonials are great for your website. Just as news is more convincing than paid advertising, the things other people have said about you can be more convincing than the things you’ve paid someone to write up as marketing copy.

When you get a sincere thanks or compliment from a happy customer, file it carefully and add it to your website when you’re updating. If the client says it to you rather than writing it, ask, “Can I quote you?” and copy it down accurately right away. You can even ask for feedback, if you need a nice testimonial for a web page and haven’t received just the right compliment yet.

Once you’ve gotten your testimonials file filled, use the nice words strategically. Use them on your website, in your proposals or promotional materials, or framed on your wall.

Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Testimonials can say things that would sound like bragging if you said them yourself. The example above used to live on my web content services page at my first professional website. It says that my copy was brilliant and the website I built was beautiful. While I certainly always strive to do beautiful and brilliant work, I can hardly announce that it’s my specialty. Don’t waste space on your page with testimonials that echo your own marketing copy; save it for the people who say something special.
  • You can still think about your keywords, though. The example below was chosen specifically because it contains a phrase we wanted to move to the homepage to improve search results.

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  • We often use a rotating testimonials plugin  to bring a variety of reviews to a single page. This makes sense, since it allows you to include more testimonials. Keep in mind, though, that your visitors — depending how fast they read and how quickly they navigate — may only see one. This meant, for the website below, that a visitor might only see a testimonial that said, “Thanks.” We removed the weaker examples from the rotation, and added the “more feedback” link to make it clear that there were more examples — encouraging visitors either to click, or to slow down and see more.

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