A common tactic used by e-commerce businesses today is one that finds its roots in psychology. That tactic is known as social proof.
Social proof comes with many benefits for your Shopify store. But what is social proof to begin with? How can you use it to drive business?
Hey, did you know you could build loyalty with social proof?
But wait, how would you know what are the best social proof apps on Shopify?
Don’t fret. In this article, we’re going to answer all these questions and more!
What is social proof?
Social proof is a psychological concept where people are more likely to behave in a certain way if they find others behaving that way.
The concept was “popularized” by Dr. Robert Cialdini.
“Social proof is a psychological phenomenon […]that describes our tendency to rely on the opinions or actions of others to inform our own. Also known as informational social influence, it validates a shopper’s choice, saying that it’s worth their time, money, or interest by using other people as proof.”Shopify
Here’s another social proof definition from CXL:
“Social proof is a concept 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).”
In marketing, social proof takes several forms but all lead to the same result. It’s a way to show potential customers that others like them have bought a certain product and liked it so that your new customers could validate their reasons for making that purchase.
Example of social proof in marketing
Let’s say you sell kitchenware. Customers log on to your website and look at the different products you have.
These customers are more likely to buy product that has 10 5-star reviews than another that has no reviews. Similarly, customers are more likely to read the reviews by other customers and make their decision accordingly.
Social proof for Shopify stores
If you’re a Shopify store owner, adding social proof can greatly boost your sales and conversions.
Further reading: The Ultimate Guide to Conversion Rate Optimization (Includes a Free Resource With 130+ Tips to Get You Started)
And you don’t have to worry about coding involved. With Shopify, the process is super simple. All you have to do is visit the Shopify app store and choose a social proof app and integrate it in your store.
Keep reading to learn more about the best social proof apps for Shopify stores.
Why social proof is important
To understand the strength of social proof in marketing, especially e-commerce marketing, it’s best to see what the stats have to say.
Roughly 71% of customers are more likely to buy a product based on social media referrals. Moreover, 63% of customers via social media consider ratings by other customers to be the number 1 element to drive them to ‘buy now.’ (HubSpot)
Almost all (91%) of shoppers “read at least on review before making a purchase.”
In the United States, nearly 80% of shoppers look to recommendations before making any purchase.
Around 54% of nearly 1,600 customers bought a consumer-packaged product after seeing others talking about it. This is called user-generated content (UCG). (Nosto)
Using testimonials can boost purchases by up to 34%. (VWO)
So great, the stats say social proof is a great marketing tool that can help increase e-commerce sales. But how beneficial is social proof really?
How does it help you as an e-commerce business and a Shopify store owner?
- Builds trust
- Boosts acquisitions and conversions
- Increases your conversion rate
Further reading: Boost Your Shopify Conversion Rate with These 9 Tips
What does social proof look like in e-commerce
Social proof in e-commerce and marketing can take various forms.
Here are a few of these forms:
- Star-ratings for products and services
- Social shares
- User-generated content (UCG) including pictures and videos
- Number of purchases made
- Number of carts containing that product or service
- Reviews on third-party websites such as Google
- Number of followers across social media platforms
- Downloads or purchase counts
- Number of shares via sharing buttons
- Celebrity or influencer endorsements
Best social proof apps for your Shopify store
Now that we’ve covered the basics of social proof and its applications in marketing and e-commerce, let’s look at the top social proof apps for Shopify.
To get an app, all you have to do is to visit the Shopify store and integrate the app with your store.
We’ll be looking at 12 social proof apps for Shopify in terms of:
- Number of 5-star reviews
- Free trial/plan availability
One of the best social proof apps for Shopify stores is Fera with over 4,000 5-star reviews!
Fera helps Shopify store owners import reviews from multiple channels including Facebook, Google, and Etsy, and moderate and respond to reviews. It also offers “SEO-optimized to show reviews Google Search and Google Shopping results.”
Social proof app Fera gives merchants the opportunity to showcase reviews in an “all your reviews page” including Facebook and Google reviews.
Fera is one of the most popular and widely-used social proof apps. The app boasts 4,500 reviews, of which there are over 4,270 5-star reviews.
Fera offers both a free 14-day trial and a free basic plan. Its paid plan starts at $9a month and can go up to $99 a month.
This app helps merchants boost their conversions and revenues using several options such as pop-ups (sales, free-delivery…etc), social proof notifications, urgency nudges, and other types of notifications.
Nudgify’s social proof tactics help Shopify merchants create urgency and indicate scarcity.
The Nudgify Shopify app has an overall rating of 4.8 from a total of 94 ratings. Of these ratings there are 74 5-star reviews and 16 4-star reviews.
Nudgify does not offer a free trial but their social proof app comes with a basic free plan that includes up to 1,000 notifications per month.
Their starter plan called ‘Plus’ starts at $9 per month and can go up to $89 a month.
Further reading: Here Are the 20 Best Shopify Apps to Support Your Store
This Shopify social proof not only integrates with other Shopify apps like Zapier and Mailchimp, but also with Instagram.
It can show merchants things like newsletter signups, live visitors, store orders, product reviews, among other social proof options.
FOMO enjoys an overall rating of 4.8 from 141 reviews, of which there are 118 5-star reviews.
FOMO does not offer a free trial but they do offer a free plan. Meanwhile, their paid plan starts at $19 a month and can go up to $79 a month depending on your store’s needs.
This top Shopify social proof app helps merchants show customers recent orders of a certain product and star-reviews. It also offers live-visitor notifications to increase your Shopify sales and conversions.
“ProveSource automatically connects to your Shopify store and tracks recent sales to start displaying sales popup & social proof. This in turn converts more traffic – just by sharing details of other purchases with sales pop,” ProveSource explains via its Shopify page.
The ProveSource social proof app for Shopify boasts 197 ratings, of which there 177 5-star reviews and 16 4-star reviews. Its overall rating is 4.8.
ProveSource does not offer a free trial but it does have an always-free plan. It’s paid plans start at $29 per month and can go up to $54 a month.
Urgencer combines fear of missing out (FOMO) with social proof. It lets you “create fully custom urgency boxes in your product pages that create a sense of urgency and trust and increase sales,” Urgencer explains via its Shopify page.
How does Urgencer do that?
It helps Shopify store owners show customers “multiple urgency texts” on a page. These texts can indicate number of visitors in real-time, visitors by location, or urgency texts on product pages.
Urgencer has an overall rating of 4.8 from 123 reviews. Of these there are 93 5-star reviews and 26 4-star reviews.
Unlike most of the social proof apps on this list, Urgencer has a 3-day free trial. The app does not offer a free plan, though. Its paid plan starts at $2.99 a month.
As its name suggests, Visitor Counter helps Shopify store owners create social proof by displaying the number of visitors in their store.
Store owners can use Visitor Counter “for analytics, to keep track of your store visits, or to keep track of product page views,” the app says via its Shopify page.
Visitor Counter can also help merchants show and count ‘unique page views.’ This social proof Shopify app is also mobile responsive and ensures your website and visitor counts are too.
Visitor Counter has 45 reviews, of which 28 are 5-star reviews and 12 have earned 4 stars.
The Visitor Counter doesn’t have a free trial but they do have a free plan featuring a customer hit counter. Their Starter paid plan starts at $5.49 a month but can go down to $4.49 a month if you opt for the annual subscription.
One of the top social proof apps for Shopify is Nextsale. It helps store owners display reviews for their products and send sales notifications to increase social proof.
Nextsale also helps merchants “grow targeted e-mail and SMS lists with pop-ups and run promotions with timers and countdowns.”
One of the major benefits of using Nextsale is that it integrates with a host of other Shopify apps including loyalty and rewards app Gameball.
You can also integrate Nextsales with “Klaviyo, MailChimp, Omnisend, HubSpot, Yotpo, Stamped.io, Judge.me, Capterra, Trustpilot, ResellerRatings, Mailerlite, Reviews.io, Growave, ActiveCampaign, Gumroad, and Stripe.”
Nextsale enjoys 313 reviews, of which 304 are 5-star reviews.
This social proof app has a 10-day free trial as well as an always-free plan. It’s first plan is called Lite and starts at $19 a month. If billed annually, the Lite plan drops to $13 a month.
Each of Nextsale’s paid plans comes with a discount if billed annually.
Further reading: 7 Shopify Must-Have Apps to Boost Your Sales
8. Sales Pop Up
Sales Pop Up is a widely popular app and one of the best social proof apps for Shopify with over 5,000 reviews.
One of the reasons it’s a popular Shopify social proof app is because of the many benefits it offers merchants.
Sales Pop Up offers e-commerce businesses:
- A countdown timer that can boost your Shopify conversion rate
- Increases add-to-cart actions
- Boost loyalty with pop-ups, a ‘coupon code wheel,’ and countdown timers
Sales Pop Up boasts 5,511 reviews, of which 4,529 are 5-star reviews.
This Shopify doesn’t come with a free trial but it has a free plan. Its paid plans begin at $9.99 a month and can go up to $14.99.
Judge.me is one of the most popular social proof and customer reviews apps on the Shopify app store.
Using Judge.me, you can “collect and display star ratings and reviews about your products and Shopify store.”
This customer reviews app also integrates with multiple loyalty and rewards program apps on Shopify including Gameball. This means you can create social proof, reward customers for leaving reviews, and create an ambassador strategy for your business.
Judge.Me (pronounced Judge Me) has an overall rating of 5.0. This top social proof app boasts over 10,698 ratings! Of those 10,000+ reviews, 10,507 are 5-star reviews. That’s a 98% 5-star (approval) rating!
The Judge.Me app has a free plan, while its paid plans start at $15 a month. Their starter plan is adequately called ‘Awesome.’
How to use social proof in your Shopify store
Now that you’re familiar with how social proof acts as a psychological tactic and can entice customers to buy from you, let’s explore a few ways you can use and create social proof.
You can ask customers to do one or more of the following:
- Review the products they purchased
- Take pictures of your products when they arrive or when they start using them
- Ask customers to rate the products they bought (this is especially helpful if you work with multiple suppliers)
- Ask for testimonials for your Shopify store, customer service, packaging…etc.
- Create a hashtag for your brand and ask customers to use it when talking about you
- Ask customers to tag you via Instagram, Twitter, or other social media platforms when reviewing or comments on your products
- Collaborate with experts, micro-influencers, or bloggers
Building loyalty with social proof
We’ve mentioned that one of the benefits of social proof is that it helps build customer loyalty.
You can use social proof as one of your customer retention strategies.
Many of the abovementioned Shopify social proof apps can be integrated with loyalty, engagement, and referral app Gameball. This offers a ton of opportunities for you.
Instead of just asking customers to review your products and wait and hope they leave a review, you can take it a step further by incentivizing them to rate, review, and create user-generated content for your products.
Here are a few ideas that you can do using Gameball and social proof app:
- Offer points for every rating and/or review.
- Create challenges and reward customers with badges and points for reviews and/or ratings. You can create multiple challenges for example the first being for 10 reviews, the second for 20 reviews, and so on.
- Create rewards at the end of a series of challenges or when customer reach a certain number of reviews.
- Use push notifications to remind customers that they have a specific number of reviews left to earn their next reward or number of points.
Wrapping it up
Combining social proof with actions in your loyalty program also means you can increase customer engagement.
Ready to grow your store, boost customer engagement, and add social proof to your Shopify store? Then go over the best social proof apps above and combine them with Gameball for a creative and exciting twist to your store.