20 Customer Review Examples: ideas for small businesses

Customer reviews can be the final push new clients need to deposit their trust (and money) in your business. We break down what makes a good review.

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Besides having a stunning online store and a good sales pitch, what gets customers all the way to the checkout stage is the reassurance they gain from reading positive reviews. However, one-liners or reviews devoid of correct grammar aren’t much help when it comes to landing a sale.

According to Podium, nearly nine out of ten consumers worldwide make the effort to consult customer reviews when discovering a local business. However, you also want to strike the right balance because reviews that don’t come across as authentic can raise red flags for customers who are on the fence about your business. Therefore, you want to ensure that the customer reviews are helpful and useful so that your future customers feel confident when pressing that ‘Buy’ button.

To help you understand what good customer reviews look like – so you know what type will genuinely boost your business’s reputation – we give you 20 solid examples of customer reviews.

What makes a good review?

A good review is not just a five star review. While it might boost your business ego to receive stellar ratings, it doesn’t do much to help customers who are deciding to give you their money. Although there’s no one-size-fits-all structure for a perfect customer review, here are a few criteria that make a genuinely good one:

  • Detailed and precise → good customer reviews will include details about the user’s experience with the product or service. The good ones tend to be a paragraph long or so, and give insights on the product that don’t sound salesy and that include details that you wouldn’t be able to easily find on the business’s website.
  • Truthful → although useful reviews definitely include praises, they also include constructive criticism. Customers that offer critiques come across as more authentic and give other customers the certainty they have actually used the product. Moreover, a truthful review will also be useful to your business as you’ll be able to identify product improvements.
  • Feature pictures → a picture is worth a thousand words, and that certainly is the case when it comes to reviews. Seeing how the product looks in the wild – rather than a Photoshopped version on your virtual storefront – can give customers the extra layer of information and certainty they need to complete their purchase.
  • Grammatically correct → customers want to read reviews from other real customers. Therefore, reviews that have atrocious grammar hardly pass by as being written by a human and not a bot. When you’re curating chosen customer reviews or testimonials on your site, make sure you select ones that are written properly. They don’t need to be the work of a wordsmith – they just need to read like normal and correct English.
  • Mentions employees → reviews that mention Billy from sales, or Janet from customer services will stand out more than other reviews where your support team remains anonymous. Why? Because it gives an extra touch of authenticity and credibility to the review. It also humanises your support team and demonstrates how memorable the customer experience was. Five star support teams are always a green flag for those who have just encountered your business for the first time.

Why are customer reviews important as a small business?

Small businesses are unlikely to have the massive budgets that other big brands do when it comes to marketing. That’s why customer reviews become so important – they’re a costless way to provide certainty to new customers. Moreover, word-of-mouth recommendations and reviews are more efficient in prompting a purchase than other traditional methods of marketing. Here’s why customer reviews are so crucial to small businesses:

  • Social proof → customers are influenced by the people around them, even if those are just names on reviews they stumbled upon 30 seconds ago. Having high quality reviews that give genuine insights into a product can provide that final push needed to press ‘Purchase’. While there are different types of social proof, customer reviews have a special place in shoppers’ hearts.
  • Feedback → your product is your brainchild and we would understand if you find it difficult to spot flaws in its design. That’s where customer reviews come in – they give you valuable constructive feedback about what could be improved so you can eventually increase sales.
  • Establish trust with shoppers → when stores display customer reviews, it not only proves that you’re an established business but that you’re transparent about your services. It also signals you’re more than happy to give your customers a voice. All of these are good omens to new customers who might be on the fence about your business.
  • Strengthen your SEO muscle → most customer reviews will contain lots of keywords that customers are searching for closely linked to your product. Reviews are also published on a regular basis. Both these factors add up to make for great SEO, which can help drive high quality traffic to your page.

20 positive review examples by industry

Getting customers to write positive reviews about your business can be challenging. That’s why it’s always a good idea to share testimonials on your site to promote transparency and to motivate them to do the same. Here’s a couple of examples to get inspired for your industry.


These reviews are a great example of solid customer reviews as they provide both the things that users enjoyed as well as some constructive feedback. You can tell these users genuinely used the product, which gives potential customers an added level of reassurance.


The set up of your customer review form is crucial. If you provide a space for both positive and constructive feedback, it’s more likely you’ll get more helpful reviews. These are great examples of that as Booking.com prompts reviewers to comment on things they liked and didn’t like about their accommodation. That last one in particular is great because it mentions an employee, which humanises your customer service.


Just like with other industries, the great part about these reviews is that they offer constructive feedback and detail about the product. These are particularly good because they include images, which means anyone reading the review knows how the product looks like in real life.


Real Estate


Top customer review statistics

  • 88% of consumers worldwide make the effort to consult reviews when discovering local businesses.
  • 62% of consumers say reviews play a big or moderate role in finding out more about a business.
  • According to Trustpilot, 62% of consumers say they will not buy from brands that censor online reviews.
  • 49% of shoppers say they trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
  • 54.7% of consumers read at least four reviews before buying a product.

How to respond to reviews

When you get both positive and negative reviews, you might make the mistake of resorting to your jerk instincts and giving the wrong impression of your business. Here’s a couple of tips to make sure you respond with a cold head and with professionalism.

Responding to positive reviews

Positive reviews are always nice to receive and while those customers are evidently happy already, it’s important to take the right steps to make sure they stay that way. Here’s a couple of tips on replying to positive reviews:

  • Make sure to reply: although you might feel that in some instances words are unnecessary, just leaving a simple ‘thank you’ can make the customer feel listened to. This shows your business cares about each and every single customer, which can foster customer loyalty.
  • Take the chance to share new information: without sounding overly salesy, you can give your happy customer some extra information about that new feature you just released or tell them to keep their eyes peeled for a new exciting product. They already are happy with your business, so why not subtly point them to your next offering?

Responding to negative reviews

Contrary to positive reviews, negative feedback might make you break a cold sweat or make you want to spill all your rage onto your keyboard. We understand the feeling but the most important part about responding to a negative review is to answer in a cold and composed manner. Here’s how to do that:

  • Try to practise empathy before writing → we get that receiving a negative review can be scary. After all, dissatisfied customers can air their grievances publicly in front of thousands of internet spectators. However, before unleashing your rage, try to understand where the customer is coming from and what the problem is exactly. This will help you approach the review with a solutions focused lens.
  • Always respond → silence is a response in itself. Leaving an angry customer hanging not only makes that person angrier, but it gives a bad impression to other customers who might be browsing reviews. Prioritise responding quickly. In other words, don’t let more than 48 hours go by since the review was published. Whether you are right or wrong, it always is better to leave a response to show that you care about satisfied and dissatisfied customers equally.
  • Write personalised responses → avoid resorting to ready-made answers as these could simply occasion more frustration for customers. Make sure to read the review carefully and try to understand what the problem was, and most importantly, how you’re offering to solve it.
  • Suggest a solution → let them know what you have done to remedy the situation. This will help promote a positive image of your business to others as well, as they’ll have the reassurance that if they do encounter an issue with your product or service that you’ll be quick to help.


Customers are at the heart of any business. Therefore, hearing what they have to say about their experience with your product or service and being genuinely receptive to that feedback is key. Whether they are positive or negative reviews, it’s important to keep track of them, respond, and understand how you can take that criticism and translate it into improvements for your business.

Every customer is different and will have a different journey with your business, but as long as you are a reliable point of contact to enhance that journey, you should hopefully be receiving more positive than negative feedback.

Written by:
Fernanda is a Mexican-born Startups Writer. Specialising in the Marketing & Finding Customers pillar, she’s always on the lookout for how startups can leverage tools, software, and insights to help solidify their brand, retain clients, and find new areas for growth. Having grown up in Mexico City and Abu Dhabi, Fernanda is passionate about how businesses can adapt to new challenges in different economic environments to grow and find creative ways to engage with new and existing customers. With a background in journalism, politics, and international relations, Fernanda has written for a multitude of online magazines about topics ranging from Latin American politics to how businesses can retain staff during a recession. She is currently strengthening her journalistic muscle by studying for a part-time multimedia journalism degree from the National Council of Training for Journalists (NCTJ).

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