How to Write Quality Reviews can be challenging sometimes as not all reviews are written equal. Learning how to write a quality review is simple if you are following the DOs and DON’Ts. Today I’m revealing my guidelines for quality reviews so you can make sure every review will be extremely helpful for users and customers.
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How To Write Quality Reviews
1.Everyone Can Write but Not Everyone Can Blog
I said it before! As harsh as it may seem, while everyone can write not everyone can blog! Blogging involves more than just throwing a few words in your post and calling it a review. You may be an exceptional writer who wraps its subject in a beautiful veil of words, but it’s not enough.
In order to write quality reviews, no matter if review makeup, skincare or the latest iPhone model, you have to know some things. While writing can be the simple part, you need to learn and educate yourself in what blogging is really about. Everything you can learn about blogging will complete the puzzle pieces and make your articles come together and rank on the first page of Google searches.
I got asked many times by content creators, why their reviews don’t rank high or create engagement. Many times not even the feedback from users or clients is favorable. When you look in Google Analytics you’ll understand why. Users may come on your blog or website for information but your reviews still rank low.
This means that you need to study and educate yourself on how to write a proper review. Study about how Search Engine Optimizations works and how can you use it on your advantage. Perhaps some photography tips will help you improve the quality of your photos. If you are a blogger you must know a bit of everything, at least until you can afford to hire help.
2.Knowing How to Use SEO
I’m not saying you should become a SEO specialist, but in order to write quality reviews you must have some SEO knowledge. I didn’t even know what Search Engine Optimization meant when I started blogging. After 3 years into blogging when new blogs were coming up, I saw that I didn’t get the same results from my articles. I improved my content and I was posting constantly everyday so what was the problem?
That’s when I hired a SEO specialists to look into my blog, analyze it and make some changes. While there was work to be done in the background I was told I still needed to do my part for every article. I started studying SEO, going to workshops and seminars and trying to learn as much as I could from SEO specialists.
If someone would have told me that SEO will play a big part on how my articles rank in Google Searches and I have to learn SEO, Chicprofile wouldn’t have existed. Everything happened gradually, so I’m not saying you should know it all before you start your blog. Take time every few days to learn and educate yourself.
I’m surprised how some beauty veterans and popular content creators have been blogging for years, without having the minimum knowledge about SEO. It’s easy to see they don’t even bother to include Heading2 or Heading3 in their posts.
If this sounds too complicated for you already then it’s time for some good news. So don’t give up! Today we have help from free download plugins like Yoast SEO that we can install in 2 minutes on our platforms. It’s a good place to start if you don’t know anything about SEO. Once you finish your article you can check the plugin to see what you need to improve. It gives you analysis results and tell you exactly what you need to work on.
3.Google Doesn’t Like Short Posts
There are reviews of 300 words! The shocking part is they present an entire collection or 3-4 products. I struggle to edit my reviews and make them shorter than 1500 words so they won’t be too hard to read. I understand how easy it is to write short reviews and compensate with excellent photos, but this is not what Google likes.
Lengthier reviews are much more valuable to readers regardless the fact that you loved or didn’t like that product or service. Don’t hold back in giving them more information and share your experience. You may be the 1% who didn’t like the eyeshadow palette because your eyes got irritated. Share it in your review but disclose that you have very sensitive eyes.
Google likes and ranks better lengthier articles, so make sure to write at least 500 words. If you are talking about several products writing 1000 words should be easy as your readers need all the details. I know it’s time consuming and may take you an entire day but if you want quality this is what it takes.
Don’t be superficial and say the lipstick color is beautiful, the packaging is luxurious while the formula is excellent. Deliberate on that! Tells us how thin or thick the texture is and how did it perform throughout the day. Especially after you had a meal or drink if the color wore off.
When you are reviewing a foundation take your time and try for a few days with different primers. Tell us your skin type and walk us through your experience. Even talking about the region you live in can be essential. Products can behave differently in a hot and humid climate. Your readers who live in a country with dry and cold climate will not understand why their experience is totally different than yours.
Writing quality reviews takes time! I’m not only talking about how long it takes to transfer your words on the keyboard but also about the time you take to REALLY test that product. While you want to be the first who reviews that collection you may be surprised to see that after a week your post doesn’t rank high in Google Searches. Why? Because while you were trying the product only once and hurrying to post your review, someone who tested it for longer, overtook you in quality. You provided only swatches and first impressions while someone else shared more insights, details and quality information.
What you can do is write a first-impression post and let your readers know there’s an upcoming detailed review for that product. This way you can still give them the scoops, swatches and share close-up photos. Make sure that later on you’ll tell the story from beginning to end without leaving out any details. Do it well and it could really help someone!
Don’t call it a review unless you tried that product a few times and you are sharing your personal experience with us. There’s too many superficial reviews nowadays so don’t quote from the press release.
Back in 2008 when I was reviewing nail polishes I was posting before and after a few days wear photos. Almost everyone was talking about the color itself and how it looked applied in 2 coats. Nobody was showing photos after 5 days wear or talking about the nail polish performances. I shared photos of how the nail lacquer looked in 2 layers or with top coat. I was making sure to disclose any important details so I gained a faithful audience. They realized that even if a nail polish looks pretty, it’s not worth the price if it chips immediately when you do the dishes.
Quality reviews rely on honesty and this is the best policy and best approach. Exceptions happen when content creators don’t have full editorial control so they can’t be 100% transparent in their reviews. When a brand sends you free products for review purposes, overtime you’ll feel the pressure. Once in a while the brand accepts that you didn’t like the product, it didn’t perform well or is not worth the price. But no brand will keep you on their PR list if you have issues with most of their products.
That’s why many content creators have chosen not to share to much and keep the reviews simple. They add information from press releases and their thoughts about color, packaging and formula. They won’t go into depth in their reviews, especially if the product didn’t perform that well.
I have an example from 2017 when the second Estee Lauder Vicktoria Beckham Makeup Collection launched. The first collaboration was a major success and everyone was praising the products. The second collection had some repromotes but overall it was a fail. The majority of content creators were afraid to comment on the subject. I went to Selfridges 3 times back then, posting Instagram videos and swatching the products live. My followers were shocked at the time!
I was talking to MUAs who were very confident at first but after a few days they addmited the new products were a fail. You see, customers were trying to return the products, but they couldn’t because they were not new. The eyeshadow quad was a major fail (other products too) but influencers who received the collection in PR wouldn’t dare to say a thing. They put the spotlight on the repromote products and avoid sharing their experience about the new ones. When Temptalia reviewed the collection and gave many products an F, people realized how much the doughnuts were inflated.
Honesty and unbiased reviews can cause you to lose a contract or be kicked out of a PR list. There are brands that are very strict about providing 100% positive coverage. That’s why I choose to be an independent content creator and have 100% editorial control on Chicprofile. It’s not easy! I shared my story on my Patreon Page where readers offer me support in exchange for exclusive content. There are brands which form the exception but usually they are drugstore or indie brands. Most established brands want to make sure their investment is worth it.
I’m not talking about bashing a product but write in politely manner why it didn’t work for your. Some brands are so sensitive, that they’ll take it the wrong way if you say a lipstick didn’t last through the meal. I know it’s absurd! So I understand why, in order to keep a relationship with the brand, some content creators choose to unveil less in their reviews.
Take your review to the next level and turn it into something really actionable. Give some advice in your review and users will appreciate it. You tried a new face oil but your combination skin thought it was too rich. On the other hand your mum who has dry and mature skin, loved it. Your new golden highlighter doesn’t look flattering at all on your light skin but your friend with medium skin, rocks the shade.
Any kind of information that you can provide, especially the reason why some products didn’t work out for you, will help your readers and customers.
If you order from an online shop and you leave a feedback, make sure to include an advice for the issue you had. Maybe tell them you need more accurate delivery information next time. Or their size chart is only for US and it wouldn’t hurt to put the UK or Europe measurements.
Photos by Unsplash