Writing a review on a product that you don’t have can be tough. I used to think it was impossible.
When I started my reviews in my firsttimeparentguide.com blog, I started with cloth diapers. That was mainly because we have them, and it was easier to talk about something that you are using.
After cloth diapers, I started buying used diaper bags. One by one and the cost was adding up.
I realized it was impossible to keep on buying or renting as it can get expensive in the long run.
But if you want to review more expensive products to get higher commissions, how else is that possible?
Here’s how I eventually managed to write reviews of products that we don’t have, and I get sales from the reviews every day.
1. YouTube Videos
The most important reason why I watch YouTube videos of the product is to know how it works. When watching the videos, take note of the following:
- How can my readers benefit from the product?
- How will they use it?
- What possible problems can it give?
- Is there any solution to the problem?
Do not forget to check the comments section. Sometimes, the one who uploaded it does not at all reply to the question asked.
Look for an answer as it is already your chance to answer that question thru your article. When your write-up is done, reply to that person and give the link to your post.
Watch all available videos that you can find until you fully understand the product.
In instances that there are repetitive and unhelpful videos, just skip them.
2. The Question And Answer Area In The Product Page In Amazon
If you go to any product page in Amazon, there are answered questions beside the “customer reviews.” Go thru it one by one to educate yourself more about the product. See the below photo.
Don’t forget to take notes. I’d usually type directly to Google Docs so that it is easier to organize the points later on.
3. The Amazon Reviews
There are three types of customer reviews on Amazon.
The first type is those who bought the product directly from Amazon. When they leave reviews, their review will be marked as a “Verified Purchase.” These are the people who are usually blunt and honest. You can learn a lot from them.
The second type is those who received the product for free in exchange for an honest review. Their reviews are usually marked as a “Vine Customer Review of Free Product.” I personally find these types of reviews to be neutral. The reviewers provide pros and cons so it usually is fair for the product they are reviewing.
The last type of review doesn’t have a Vine or a Verified mark. You cannot say that they are not legitimate because I once tried to leave a review of a cloth diaper I bought from the mall. We have it and we use it for my baby, so my review was genuine, but that may not be the case for all reviewers without the mentioned mark.
In instances that there are literally thousands of reviews, you can filter it. I would usually sort it by “most recent,” and filter the reviews showing only the “Verified Purchase,” and “All Critical.”
The “Top Critical” portion is also important. These are the reviews that readers upvote since they find it helpful.
Feedbacks, when you use these filters, are the most valuable in my opinion. Remember, you are not trying to sell to your readers. You are helping them decide if the product is what they are looking for.
Think of it as a research paper. Put yourself in your readers’ shoes. Are you being helpful?
Take note that you cannot copy and paste what they say. You also cannot screenshot the review from Amazon.
When a reviewer mentions another product, jot down the product’s name. That can be a good topic to discuss in your next article. You can also compare the two products in your next review.
4. The Official Website Of The Product
This is the last place I visit when researching a product. I mainly just get the technical specifications since they usually are the most accurate being the manufacturer.
5. The Product Manual
There are instances that you still need a piece of information but cannot find an answer from the above four. Google “Product X Manual” – X is the name of the product. It usually is available as pdf and you can view or download it.
I have done this several times but just to answer a question in the comments section in my post.
What To Do After Research
Assuming you have diligently taken down notes, it time to organize it. I highly recommend using Google Docs when jotting down notes. Not only it is free. It also autosaves reliably.
I have tried several platforms that promise to autosave, but many have failed me, so I stick with my most trusted platform, the Google Docs.
1. Create A Template
Create a template that can help you organize your thoughts. Here’s an example template for writing a stroller review.
- Warranty/Return Policy
- Stroller Handle
- Child’s Tray
- Cup Holder
- Storage Areas
- Technical Specifications
Add a category as needed. Leave no room for questions.
I am not a fan of writing pros and cons and putting a star rating in my reviews. This is just my opinion.
If I put myself in my reader’s shoes, I am not going to read the whole article if I see a 2-star review of a product. I’ll go straight to the cons section and conclusion and by the time I’m done with those sections, I’ll just roughly browse thru the whole article and leave.
I have tried revising all my reviews (I’m not done until now, LOL) to mention pros and cons while explaining how the product works, just to make sure they read from top to bottom.
For example, I know that there are a lot of bad reviews about Stroller X’s capacity to stand upright alone when folded. I’ll mention it after explaining how to fold it and make it stand on its own, therefore helping my readers to solve “possible problems” they might encounter should they decide to purchase the product.
So instead of just mentioning the problem as reported by the people who had them, I have already looked for the possible solution.
2. For Your Conclusion, Answer The Question: Will I Buy It?
As a finale, again put yourself in your reader’s shoes. Will I buy it? If yes, explain why. Do not be afraid to be opinionated. Base your opinion on your research. If not, mention what might be a good alternative. Give a link to a review of that product within your site.
If you do not have any suggestion about an alternative product yet, point them to the Amazon reviews of the product you just reviewed. Say something like “Check out the Amazon reviews to verify your decision.”
As a final reminder, always remember, DO NOT TRY TO SELL TO YOUR READERS. Just help them have an educated decision.
I hope this post has been helpful. If you have any question, do not hesitate to leave them below in the comments section and I’d be more than willing to help!
Until Next Post!