Your brand is worth its salt — but why should your potential customers believe you? After all, your perspective does come with a healthy dose of bias…
The proof is in your customer testimonials.
And not just any testimonials. The kind with stellar visuals that are sure to catch your audience’s attention and convince them that they’ll have a great experience if they choose your company.
Keep scrolling for our top tips and some winning testimonial design examples that will get your creative gears turning.
First Things First: What is a Testimonial?
Testimonials are stories, endorsements or recommendations from customers about their experience with a brand, product or service. They can be anything from a simple quote and photo to a long-form article, case study or video interview.
Brands typically ask the clients they have the strongest relationships with to provide testimonials. The happier the client, the more likely they are to rave about the company and offer convincing reasons why others should also choose the product or service.
Though a customer review can often achieve similar goals, it’s not quite the same thing as a testimonial. Here are the key differences:
- Testimonials are controlled by the brand, meaning the marketing team works directly with existing clients to get positive content and turn it into a selling tool.
- Reviews come organically from consumers, so the unfiltered feedback can be good, bad or anywhere in between.
Testimonials exist to showcase the best of brands, ultimately giving potential customers reasons to feel confident in buying the products or services.
A Testimonial for Testimonials: Why We Use Them in Marketing
When your prospective customers are in the research stage, they’re going to start with your website. They want to know who you are as a brand and how your product or service could be the answer to their needs and wants.
They also want social proof that your product or service actually works. This is where your testimonials work their magic.
Effective testimonials help build trust with potential clients and encourage them to take action.
In a way, testimonials are a way for your future customers to try before they buy through the experiences of someone else. Even better if that someone else is a credible name or works for a well-known brand that your visitors will automatically trust.
In the spirit of a testimonial, you don’t have to take our word for it. The majority of people — 9 out of 10 — say they trust what a customer says about a business more than what businesses say about themselves.
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Elements of Top-Notch Testimonial Design
After you interview your happy clients and write stellar testimonials, it’s time to make them look good. Whether you’re building a testimonial page into your web design, making a video or creating a social tile, there are key elements of testimonial design to keep in mind.
Let the People Behind the Testimonials Shine
Remember what that stat said about people trusting people more than brands? Your design should play to that strength of testimonials — AKA the customer’s voice.
Focus your design on the person giving the testimonial so viewers immediately know what they’re looking at.
And while viewers know that testimonials are generally positive, you can still keep the authenticity high with the personal touch of photos and using your client’s own words. Edit as needed but keep it minimal.
The Face Behind the Testimonial
It’s always a good move to accompany your testimonials with photos and videos of the people who shared their experiences. Not only are photos and videos more visually engaging than text alone, but they also drive home the point that there’s a real person behind the words.
Power in Numbers
If you have several clients who are willing to provide a testimonial, go for it! Showcasing several testimonials on your website builds credibility and shows the breadth of your strong client relationships.
More Power in Variety
Be mindful of maintaining variety in your customer testimonials. Speak to various selling points of your product or service and highlight different kinds of people, companies and situations. This ups your chances of sharing a testimonial that resonates with multiple visitors.
Visual variety is also important because you don’t want to bore your viewers. Your design elements will also help distinguish testimonials from each other.
Right Place, Right Time
The placement of testimonials is also an important design choice. Your homepage, product or service pages and blog are ideal places for testimonials to live. Many brands also dedicate entire landing pages to customer stories.
Win the Popularity Contest
If you can get a vote of confidence from a name or brand that your audience will recognize, that testimonial will likely be especially influential. Make sure your design highlights the name or logo that’s sure to catch attention.
8 Testimonial Design Examples
Our team opts for sharing a client testimonial right on our homepage, paired with a heading that speaks to the quote and one of our top services. The added touch of bolded text in the quote also emphasizes the page-one search result message we want to communicate.
Heather’s name, title, photo and company logo are there to prove there’s a real person behind the quote.
The link to the full case study allows visitors to learn more about Heather’s experience, while the CTA button also gives them the option to go straight to the product offering.
Though simple, this testimonial design works well for Canva. It’s woven seamlessly into the website design and the graphic design utilizes high-quality imagery to show the featured client using the product.
Bonus points: When you click “read more” to see the full customer story, there’s also a video testimonial from The Daily Aus co-founders.
This client testimonial scroll on Asana’s homepage leans into the strength of showing variety in customer experiences. The simple design is cohesive yet the subtle differences seamlessly distinguish the testimonials, such as the play button on those with an accompanying video.
4. Tailwind CSS
This interactive testimonial design is a genius approach for Tailwind CSS, a utility-first CSS framework that helps customers build custom user interfaces quickly and easily.
They include all of the basic elements of a testimonial — name, title, photo and quote — and then they take it to the next level by pairing it with the coding that automatically customizes elements of the testimonial.
The company complements this animated testimonial with a classic collection of customer quotes, which visitors can scroll through to see more. This displays strength in numbers while also giving the impression that all of their clients are equal.
After a couple of scrolls, a CTA button that says “Okay, I get the point” appears for an added touch of humor that allows viewers to exit the testimonials.
5. Apple at Work
In true Apple fashion, this testimonial design is simple, straight to the point and easy for users to navigate. Along with the quote and logo, the testimonial section includes statistics from the customer story so visitors can quickly absorb the impressive impact of the company’s experience with Apple.
What’s more, Apple at Work dedicates an entire landing page to Success Stories and there’s a dropdown for users to choose an industry. This makes it easy for users to see the testimonials that are most relevant to their company.
Slack incorporates testimonial design throughout its website, from product and pricing pages to a landing page dedicated to customer stories. They achieve this by incorporating variety into the testimonial section on the different pages and matching the featured stories to the surrounding content.
This ensures users will encounter multiple customer testimonials as they explore the website for more information.
While hosts rely on customer reviews to encourage people to stay in their homes, AirBnB utilizes testimonials to encourage homeowners to open their doors to renters.
The web design features personal touches like handwritten font and high-quality photos of the featured hosts, plus the storytelling approach weaves the quotes throughout other relevant information about hosting.
8. Ilia Beauty
This beauty brand takes the influencer approach to provide social proof that people love their products.
The social videos show real people applying their makeup products. And while those real people have especially large followings on Instagram, the videos feel authentic and allow prospective customers to see the products in action.
Plus, the videos also translate to a landing page on Ilia’s website and the brand utilizes them in targeted advertising. Who doesn’t love repurposing content?!
Generating Authentic Testimonials for Your Website
Off you go! Start by identifying some of your strongest clients who will be open to sharing their experiences publicly. Set up an interview with them, collect the winning quotes and photos, then follow these testimonial design tips and examples to make them shine.
With glowing testimonials in your toolbox, be sure to put them to work! Incorporate them in various places on your website, promote them with links or graphic tiles and use them as guides for your next testimonial.