Regardless of their topics, most bloggers have published reviews of their favorite products or services every once in a while. Your website might not be related to product reviews, but you can still make use of a review plugin.
For instance, you can use a review plugin to provide a summary of your article. As most of the visitors only skim through web contents, a summary will be useful for them. One of the plugins listed below also lets you collect testimonials from the visitors.
And if you are running a business site, then using a review plugin is a must for you.
1. WP Review
WP Review is a premium quality plugin created by MyThemeShop. This plugin allows you to significantly increase user interaction by including product reviews or product ratings. Developed by the professionals, it will not have any negative impact on your website performance.
Once you install and activate the plugin, the rating and review system will be activated automatically. You will find a new meta box titled ‘Review’ in the post editor page. You can select from the three available review types – Star, Point, Percentage. The rating system will vary depending on your choice.
For the review, you can add unlimited number of review items and provide rating for each of them. As you give raring for the items, the average score will be counted automatically. It is also possible to delete any item by clicking the ‘Delete’ button.
By default, the review will appear right after the main content. But you can change the position by checking the ‘Custom Location’ box and then selecting the location from the ‘Review Location’ field.
If you want to customize the review colors, you can do so by checking the ‘Custom Color’ box. You can choose a color for the review points, review font, heading background, review background, and the border.
WP Review also allows you to provide a custom description along with the review points. To do that, provide the description title and the text. Last but not the least, you can also allow the visitor to leave their review by choosing the ‘Enabled’’ option in the ‘User Reviews’ section.
2. WP Customer Reviews
WP Customer Reviews is an excellent plugin for allowing your visitors to leave their reviews about your products and services. The microformat enabled reviews are supported by Google Local Search and Google Places. The plugin also allows you to use a separate page for collecting reviews or testimonials from your customers. After activating the plugin in your site, go to the Settings -> Customer Reviews page.
The actual customization options start from the ‘Business Information’ section. You will find various options to customize how the Business hCard will be displayed along with personalizing the hCard details.
In the ‘General Settings’, you can choose the default review type and enable the review for all new posts or pages.
If you have decided to use a dedicated review page, you can choose various options for your review page from the ‘Review Page Settings’ section. Here, you can choose how many reviews to display in the page, choose the review form location, choose review fields, add custom review fields and customize the button texts.
Lastly, from the ‘Advanced’ section, you can enable or disable the plugin in all pages or posts by clicking the relevant buttons.
You will find separate fields for providing your name, email, website URL, review title, rating and the review description. After providing all the details, clicking the ‘Submit’ button will submit the review for approval.
3. WP Product Review
WP Product Review is a very useful plugin for creating in-depth review posts in your WordPress website. The review could be supplemented by ratings, affiliate links, pros and cons, user reviews, rich snippets, etc. Besides creating new reviews, the plugin also allows you to upgrade your existing posts to reviews posts.
Creating a new review is as simple as creating a regular post and marking the post as a review from the ‘Product Review Extra Settings’ meta box. This could be done in both new and existing posts. Once you mark a post as a review, you will be provided with the relevant options below.
The review options are divided into four sections. ‘Product Details’ section includes basic options like the product name, product images, affiliate button text, link, product price, etc. You can use up to two affiliate buttons. Interestingly, the product image could be used as an affiliate link too.
In the ‘Product Options Setting’ section, you will find 5 fields to provide different key areas of the product. Each of these features could be rated on a scale from 0 to 100.
Then, in the ‘Pro Features’ and the ‘Con Features’ section, you can provide 5 pros and 5 cons for the product. Once you have made all the changes, publish the post. If you load your post, you should be able to view your product review in place.
4. Author hReview
Author hReview is another excellent free plugin for adding product review and Google Rich Snippets for reviews on your WordPress site. Unlike most other review plugins, this one accepts input from the editor or author only. This unique feature can help you in maintaining the standard for your reviews.
Once you install and activate the plugin, you will find a new menu item titled ‘Author hReview’ in your website dashboard. Go to Author hReview -> Settings.
The ‘Display Settings’ options will allow you to show ratings in the home page, display the rating box below single posts and to hide the rating box. Then, you can define a custom width for the review box. Below, you will find options to set the alignment for the review box. Lastly, it is also possible to select the color for the buttons. After configuring the options, click ‘Save Changes’.
Now, if you go to the post editor, you will find a new section titled ‘Review Settings’. You will provide all the review related information in this section. You will find separate fields to define the product name, type, author name, version, URL, price, etc.
You can provide a summary of the product review in the ‘Review Summary’ field. Then, you can provide rating for the product from the ‘Select Rating’ drop-down list. Surprisingly, you can only choose absolute numbers like 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5. There is no option to provide decimal ratings like 3.7, 4.2 or 4.8.
After providing all the review information, publish the post. If you load the post now, you will see your product review in place.
5. Google Places Reviews
If you are running a local business, then using Google Places will increase customer confidence and provide a better search engine ranking for your website. Google Places Reviews is an excellent plugin for integrating the places review on your site. This plugin could be the perfect choice for restaurants, real estate businesses, hotels, retail stores or any other businesses that are looking for ways to increase their credibility.
After activating the plugin in your website, go to Settings -> Google Reviews. In that page, you will be asked to provide an API key.
In order to get the API key, follow the link provided below the field. You will be taken to Google’s API access page. After accepting the terms and conditions, go to API Access -> Simple API Access and Copy the API Key from that section.
Get back to the settings page, paste the API key and click ‘Save changes’.
Now you are ready to insert Google Places Reviews into your website. Go to Appearance -> Widgets and find out the new widget titled ‘Google Places Reviews’. Drag the widget to your desired location and drop it.
Enter your location in the ‘Location Lookup’ field and click enter. Google will show a list of relevant places. Once you choose the most appropriate one, the plugin will automatically fill up the Location, and reference ID fields.
From the ‘Review Options’ section, you can limit the number of reviews. ‘Display Options’ section lets you customize the look of the widget. The plugin is provided with several ready-made themes. You can also hide the additional texts by checking the appropriate boxes.
Lastly, in the ‘Advanced Options’ section, you can choose the cache duration, open the links in new windows and add no-follow links, etc. After making all the changes, click ‘Save’ and reload your website. Your brand new Google Places Reviews widget should be in place.
Besides publishing essential reviews and ratings, the above-discussed plugins could also be used in regular WordPress sites with a bit of creativity. Let me know which one you like and how you plan to use the plugin in your website.