10 Reasons Why You Should Write Product Reviews On Your Blog

September 8, 2008 - Written by Gyutae Park  

Are reviews a big part of your blogging repertoire? If not, you definitely want to reconsider your strategy. Some of you may think that reviews should take a back seat to authority informational articles, but writing reviews is also an excellent way to build a blog and to establish a strong business in your chosen niche. Of course effectiveness will vary from industry to industry but there are many benefits to writing reviews on your blog, many of which I’m sure you’ve overlooked in the past.

Reviews are best suited for blogs with a focus on products and e-commerce. For example, it makes sense for an iPhone blog to feature reviews on the latest applications, accessories, and features. However, reviews also work well on informational blogs. If there’s enough demand for you to start a blog on a subject, you can bet there are products and services targeting the same audience. Unless you’re looking to promote only yourself, you should actively review related products and services on your blog.

Below, I’ve listed out 10 benefits of writing reviews on your blog. Hopefully that should be enough to convince you to either get started or keep going. Read on for more.

10 Reasons Why You Should Write Reviews On Your Blog

1. Cha-ching! Earn money for your reviews
Ok, so this is the most obvious of reasons and probably provides the most incentive. It’s no secret that there is money to be made in reviews and many of the top bloggers make six-figure incomes with this strategy alone. Companies love blogs as an advertising platform because readers listen to and trust leading bloggers. Because of this, they are willing to pay a premium for paid reviews and provide higher referral rates to bloggers in order to promote their products. Bloggers like you benefit from this because they are essentially paid for giving honest feedback and opinions on products – either up-front (paid review) or per referral (affiliate marketing). For smaller blogs, blog review networks like ReviewMe, Sponsored Reviews, and PayPerPost make it easier to find advertisers and make money via a marketplace. The bottom line is that writing reviews on your blog will enable you to make money online.

2. Get free stuff
Now I don’t know about you, but I love getting free stuff. Whether it’s a t-shirt, a membership, or a computer – if it’s free you can be sure I’m on it. Want free stuff for yourself? Writing reviews on an authority blog in your niche will naturally attract advertisers who will willingly provide you with free products in order for you to review them. As a result of Winning the Web, I’ve gotten a ton of free stuff including: press passes to Affiliate Summit, various Internet marketing related ebooks, memberships to sites like SEOBook and Compete Pro, tshirts and schwag, wordpress plugins like WP Review and Link Cloak, and Ranksense SEO software.

3. Build connections with important people
You might think that a blog review is just an exchange of exposure for money, but it’s a lot more than just that. Companies you promote on your blog will remember you and that connection can help you out in your business later on. For example, say that Pepperjam Network buys a review on your blog. They really like the results and recommend you to some of their affiliates, who then get in touch with you to do more business. On the outside, reviews may only seem like a means to promote other people, but in actuality, bloggers benefit a lot as well through increased networking opportunities.

4. Learn the industry and stay up to date
Furthermore, frequently writing reviews on your blog forces you to stay on the cutting-edge in your industry. What are the newest products in your niche and how are they better than the current offerings? What do users want? Where is the industry headed? By analyzing the competitive landscape by doing reviews, you’ll know all of this valuable information ahead of time – which will then make you a more knowledgeable blogger worth listening to.

5. Learn what works and what doesn’t – find new business ideas
In addition to keeping up with the industry, writing reviews on your blog enables you to critique various products and business models that you otherwise would not be exposed to. By analyzing what works and what doesn’t, you’ll be able to discover market needs before anyone else and capitalize on those opportunities with new business ideas. Furthermore, writing reviews is essentially training for sales copywriting. By tweaking what you say and how you say it, you’ll learn what converts best for affiliate marketing and how you can best connect to readers in your reviews.

6. New relevant content for your blog
Let’s be honest here. If you’ve been blogging for more than a couple months, you know how difficult it can be to constantly think of new ideas for blog posts and articles. When the well dries up, you need something you can fall back on – so how about reviews? Generally speaking, reviews don’t require as much creative thinking that are characteristic of other types of posts. Sure, you should inject as much flavor and personal opinion as possible, but reviews generally take less initiative to conjure. Because of this, they are easier to write but still provide great value to readers. Why not mix things up a bit and keep it interesting?

7. Demonstrates authority and knowledge
Reviews are essentially a collection of your personal opinions on a product or service. However, opinions by nature require that you have a firm grasp on the subject matter before you’re able to relay your own thoughts. Because of this, writing a thorough review with insightful comments and a strong opinion is sure to demonstrate your authority and knowledge of your subject – which is just what you need to attract an audience for your blog. Sure, a review is partially “advertising” but it can also be used as great content that builds your site and authority.

8. Develops trust with readers
What would you trust more: a sales page full of marketing or a blogger’s honest review? In this situation, bloggers are the “good guys”. People turn to them for good advice and learn to trust them over time. As a blogger, you can leverage reviews to gain the trust of your readers. Be as honest as possible (even if you have to give a product a negative review) and never sell out on your readers for a few extra bucks. As long as you’re completely honest and transparent and let your personality shine through, reviews will help you build relationships with readers that will transfer to other areas of your business as well.

9. People are looking for reviews
A review may not seem as glamorous as a top list post that gets to the front page of Digg, but it’s something that people actually want and are looking for every day. Users in every niche are constantly buying products – and are looking for opinions and reviews to better guide their decisions. By filling this need, your reviews will likely start ranking in the search engines for product name keywords. You’ll gain many new readers from searchers and develop a reputation as a trustworthy reviewer.

10. Attract the right crowd to your blog: buyers
If you’re looking to monetize your blog and make money, you need the right type of audience. There are 2 categories of users: freeloaders and buyers. To put it bluntly, freeloaders will waste your bandwidth, use all your information, and not give you back a dime. It’s pointless marketing to these people. On the other hand, buyers are users who are genuinely interested in your subject matter and are willing to invest in related products and services. Which of these types of users should you focus your attention? The buyers of course. Writing extensive reviews is one of the ways to attract these buyer-types and make money on your blog.

If you’re not writing reviews on your blog already, I hope that the list above motivates you to start doing so. The upside potential is huge and you’ll start seeing a lot of great improvements on your blog.

Now that you know the Why of blog reviews, I’ll be going into the What and How in my next 2 posts: what you should review and how you should structure your reviews. Be sure to subscribe to the RSS feed and stay tuned for the next posts in this blog reviews series.

What do you think? Do you write reviews on your blog? How has it affected your readership and income? Let us know in a comment below.

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Comments

45 Responses to “10 Reasons Why You Should Write Product Reviews On Your Blog”

A Cowboy's Wife on September 8th, 2008

I have doing product reviews for a while now and have received some AWESOME stuff! SOOOO COOL:) Great post with great reasons!

Gyutae Park on September 9th, 2008

Thanks Lori! What kind of stuff did you receive? If you have a blog in an area you are passionate about, you’ll receive free products you actually want and need.

A Cowboy's Wife on September 9th, 2008

Well, for my personal blog, I’ve received some very cool, expensive toys from Vtech, Leapfrog, and others! I’ve also gotten all kinds of beauty products, clothing..and more:)

For my food blog, I’ve gotten some very nice high end knives, stand mixer, VERY expensive German cookware…lots of food and more!

It’s been a blast!

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Gyutae Park on September 9th, 2008

Awesome, thanks for sharing. Just out of curiosity, did you actively pursue these companies and ask for review products? Or did they contact you first?

 
A Cowboy's Wife on September 10th, 2008

MOST of them contacted me. There are a few that I reached out to myself like leapfrog and the stand mixer. I think most people are scared to try but all it takes is an email and you just never know!

 
Gyutae Park on September 17th, 2008

Definitely agree with you. You won’t know unless you ask. In fact, the answer will always be no unless you ask. It doesn’t hurt to try.

 
 
 
 
Lucas on September 9th, 2008 Subscribed to comments via email

Great and valid reasons, Gyutae. I agree with all of them. Number one is the most obvious and I think, the primary reason why people write reviews. 🙂

I haven’t tried reviewing a product on my blog yet, but I might do so soon.

Qutting The Day Job on September 9th, 2008

Maybe some of the super large/popular blogs and make a go with ReviewMe, Sponsored Reviews, and PayPerPost but I have not seen anything remotely close to …well…even poor results.
Personally I’ve given up on reviews until I can make one of my blogs much much more successful. The time invested now in reviewing isn’t worth the return.

Gyutae Park on September 17th, 2008

As with all things Internet marketing, content comes first – then traffic. Sure you may not have much success now, but reviews you do now will still gain you traffic and money when you do reach that point later on. Don’t let negativity hold you back. Just plow through like you’re a super blog.

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Gyutae Park on September 17th, 2008

Well money is probably the #1 motivator. The other points on the list probably revolve around this goal for most people. Try it out and review a product on NetStrife. You may be surprised at the results.

 
 
Ann Arbor Web Design on September 9th, 2008

Excellent list! With a lot of useful stuff other than the obvious: Cha-ching and free stuff that obviously everyone loves 🙂

Gyutae Park on September 17th, 2008

Thanks! Money and free stuff are the obvious reasons but there’s a lot more to it than that.

 
 
Propecia on September 9th, 2008 Subscribed to comments via email

ugh i am dying to make money in the worst way, so damn hard though.

Jay on September 12th, 2008 Subscribed to comments via email

I would personally help you out if you let me 😀

Jay

 
Gyutae Park on September 17th, 2008

It’s hard work of course, but once you get it down you could probably do it in your sleep. 😀 Jay from Dat Money above is a good resource as well.

Jay on September 18th, 2008 Subscribed to comments via email

LOL Thanks Gyutae! But I meant I would help out on a personal level, not just through my site. 😀

Jay

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BPO on September 9th, 2008 Subscribed to comments via email

good post! everyone likes free stuff and money to boot!

Gyutae Park on September 17th, 2008

Yep, those are usually enough to motivate people to do things. Everything else is just gravy.

 
 
Yebot on September 9th, 2008 Subscribed to comments via email

11.) Products that you pay for = tax write-off.

ph yeah!

Gyutae Park on September 9th, 2008

lol, good point although ideally you’d be able to get the products for free.

 
 
CoolProducts on September 9th, 2008 Subscribed to comments via email

With this list of incentives for writing reviews, you would think that everybody would want to review sites. The review might favor the reviewee more, but the blogger definitely gets a decent kick back. Good list.

Gyutae Park on September 17th, 2008

Thanks for the compliments. Everyone should in fact write reviews – to monetize their content and to keep up to date on the industry. I wouldn’t recommend writing a positive review just to get a better kick back though. Honesty is key as I mentioned.

 
 
Irish on September 10th, 2008 Subscribed to comments via email

You show to me another benefits rather than just money.

Gyutae Park on September 17th, 2008

Money is a huge factor indeed, but there’s a lot more to it than that. Glad I could show you the other benefits as well.

 
 
Debo Hobo on September 10th, 2008

I do reviews through Sponsored Review, I love it and have made quite a bit of cash for doing it. I was going to use ReviewMe but they are too dificult to work with in my opinion.

Gyutae Park on September 17th, 2008

Thanks for sharing Debo. I’ve heard great things about Sponsored Reviews although I haven’t worked with them directly. What are the benefits over ReviewMe? What do you mean they are difficult to work with? Also, have you run into any trouble with Sponsored Reviews’ policy of not disclosing paid posts?

 
 
Jay on September 10th, 2008 Subscribed to comments via email

I haven’t been doing too many reviews but it’s mainly because I almost feel bad for juat charging people for it… like what if they don’t get what they expected to get in return, you know?

Jay

Gyutae Park on September 17th, 2008

Jay, I honestly think you should not feel bad charging for reviews. Companies expect to pay for exposure and that’s exactly what a blog review is. They may not get what they expect, but that’s why it’s important to manage advertiser expectation by telling them beforehand.

Jay on September 18th, 2008 Subscribed to comments via email

But what should I tell them, “Um, dude, I can’t promise you any traffic but I’ll write a good review?” lol…

Also, I never “really” mention it if they’re the ones contacting me. Because I figured they contacted me for a reason, you know?

Jay

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Angel Cuala on September 12th, 2008

This is a very interesting post for me as I am getting more offers from SponsoredReviews recently on my other blog. I am also a member of BuyblogReviews but I am receiving few offers.

Of all the tips you have mentioned above, it is the last one I am putting much focus. I believe that paid posting does not end after you submit the post and the advertiser pays you. I believe that we must consider your paid posts as valuable as your non-paid posts.

Another thing that SponsoredReviews makes a difference is we must not inform our readers that it is a paid post, and I like that as some readers find it annoying when they read a paid post.

However, I have some questions about their style and hope I can get some helpful answers from you.

1.0 Is it really alright for a paid post that you will not disclose that it is a paid post?

2.0 Will Google be still friendly to us when we do that?

3.0 Do you think it is more helpful if advertisers?

I will be subscribing to your comments via email and looking forward for your ideas, as well as from other commentators.

Thanks!

Yan Shall Blog on September 13th, 2008 Subscribed to comments via email

You have pretty summed up what I’m about to ask….Is doing paid review going to anger the God of Google?

@Gyutae: This is one hell of a read. Excellent stuffs and it’s definitely useful for someone like me who have just started to do review on my blog..

Yan

Gyutae Park on September 17th, 2008

Paid reviews will anger Google only if the links do not use the “nofollow” attribute. Google has a weakness in its algorithm with paid links manipulating search rankings, and they don’t want webmasters to abuse it.

Thanks for the compliments Yan! If you liked this article, I’m sure you’ll like the next ones in the series as well.

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Gyutae Park on September 17th, 2008

Angel, you bring up a few excellent points. Reviews are not separate posts but should be integrated into your blog’s overall content strategy. Where do they fit in with your other posts? Having a purpose and providing consistent value to your readers will pay off with increasingly larger audiences.

Here are the answers to your questions. Hope that helps!

1. That’s up to you and the standard in your niche. I’ve found that disclosing paid posts will oftentimes scare away readers even though the content itself is very useful. Because of that I usually disclose at the end of the post.

2. Google will be okay with paid posts as long as you nofollow all links contained in the post. However, if you don’t disclose then Google may or may not know… but that’s up to you.

3. Advertisers may not want you to disclose a paid post, but you should always have your readers in mind first. Would they appreciate you labeling a paid post, or would it not matter in the industry you’re in?

Thanks for subscribing!

 
 
SeanM on September 19th, 2008

For our blog, we conduct ongoing product reviews. Because people for our blog like to see how the products works for us, so they can make an informed decision.

 
Steven-Sanders on September 19th, 2008

My wife runs a blog for maternity and baby products and posting reviews about products has gained her a large readership, as well as cause PR agencies to contact her about new products they want her to review.

She has already received over $2000 worth of free products, and there is a whole lot more still coming in.

You can bet I’m looking into reviewing products on my blog.

 
Cheap used cars for sale on November 8th, 2008 Subscribed to comments via email

Very nice post – I think its important that you start reviewing sites like these. Keep up the good posts :).

 
 
 
 
 
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