How to Write a Great Product Review

Last Update: March 13, 2018

This is really some recent product review experience followed by a question.

I see many product reviews here and every time I think about starting one, I get apprehensive about writing a review of a product I do not own, have played around with, or is a program I have NOT joined.

One of my first reviews was about the Omron 7 Wrist blood pressure monitor. I have had a wrist blood pressure monitor before and I had done my research to know that this one was one of the best wrist blood pressure monitors on the market but I didn't actually own it.

I knew my review was accurate, because of the amount of research I had completed but there was something missing.

About 1 week later I decided to purchase the Omron 7 monitor for myself. After receiving the monitor in the mail, I took pictures of it as I opened it up and tried it for the first time. Wow! There was so much more that I could now add after seeing it firsthand. Here is the link to my Omron 7 Detailed Review.

This issue of reviewing products has come up again several times in the past few weeks. I reviewed the Omron 10 upper arm blood pressure monitor and then reviewed a different affiliate program by signing up and actually going through some of the training. I learned so much by wasting 3 hours of my evening before it became obvious to me that Afilorama was nothing like Wealthy Affiliate.

Here is my question to all of you.

How can I conduct serious reviews, that are believable to me at least, without actually owning the product or joining the program?

Most of the reviews I see from Wealthy Affiliate seem great but I can't seem to bring myself to write a review without having hands on knowledge.

I would really appreciate any thoughts or advice any of you could offer.

Rick



Join the Discussion
Write something…
Recent messages
LisaTerrel1 Premium
I’m right with you ... How can I promote something to sell if I know very little about the product ... But iv been doing research and reading reviews about products but to answer your question I’m sorry but unfortunately I can’t . But I myself am looking into the items I wanna make a niech about ...

I hope that helps some .
Have A Great Day
Lisa
Reply
gtusa91 Premium
I have wondered about this too. It's certainly easier for some products. I'd imagine a watch or something like a blender would be much harder without hands on experience.

My guess would be just to do as much research as possible, that is the only way. Or perhaps find someone you know that has experience with the product. Or just summarize the features to the best of your ability!
Reply
garess Premium
I feel the same way. I feel like I'm not doing the product or service justice if I don't have direct experience as a user for some time. At the same time, as we both know, it is not feasible financially and time-wise to get your hands on everything you want to review.

Instead on focusing on reviewing the item, perhaps you may want to summarize its features and benefits instead. Most folks looking online for information have no time to research extensively about an item before they buy, they just want to know if it's the right item for them given their use-case or financial limitation.

If you can provide a digest of features along with warranty information, you are providing value to your reader and saving them time from having to look up the information on their own. Saving them money by providing coupons (if available) would be icing on the cake.

Personally, with items I intend on reviewing, I'll spend some time on the manufacturers site downloading whitepapers, sales flyers and support documents to help familiarize myself with the product without having it in my hands. Readers will then respect the fact that you just did their work for them. :)
Reply
redbiro Premium
My average motorcycle jacket is $600 and the average helmet $600. So you can quickly see it would not be reasonable to purchase hundreds of motorcycle clothing items to review.
So I guess you will have to do what most of us do, research and write based on the research.
It may seem dishonest, but if I am comparing two jackets.
This one has internal pockets
This one has kidney protection
This one has airbag inbuilt
This one has removable liner to climate changes
This one has a zip to attach to your pants so you don't get a cold back.
I don't have to own the jacket to talk about it's features in comparison to another jacket.
Hope that helps.
Dave
Reply
Belden22 Premium
I can see your point a little, but many of the clothes we buy, we do so because it fits great or feels incredible. You can't quantify that unless your taking someone else's word for it, or you actually go and try it on.

I agree with some of the comments here that we can go try on clothes in the store without buying them or look at the product on the shelf and even get it out of the box to learn more about it.

I'm just saying "for me" my reviews read so much different when I have experienced the product.

I'm not wanting to be argumentative here, I really want to know how others here at WA go about their reviews and what kind of suggestions are offered.

I do appreciate your advice.

Rick
Reply
redbiro Premium
No worries. If you find a solution, please let us know :-)
Reply
GBridgart Premium
You can't buy or join everything you review so just base your review on the research you have done and what you know to be correct. If your research is done right it is unlikely you will misrepresent the product. Going to the manufacturers or distributors site often helps and see what they claim about the product. You can use phrases like " According to the distributor's website the widget has......."
Geoff
Reply
CarolMeador Premium
Hi, Rick.
I agree with you about the integrity of the review and the necessity of its being honest and believable. I have struggled with the same issue of having difficulty writing a review of something I don't actually own and use.

I am putting information about different brands of ballroom dancing shoes on my website, and there is no way I could afford to buy each style of each brand.

So I have been doing more of a description of each brand and of course utilizing the customers' comments and ratings from their websites instead of a true product review. I say things like "according to Capezio's website, their customers state that...." And I'm not calling my posts on each brand reviews, because it really aren't.

Carol
Reply
Belden22 Premium
That's another great point. It seems like then, giving credit to whoever made the review, as we should be doing in our writing, gives us credibility as reviewers.

I like where you are going with this. We just don't want to make the reader, falsely believe, that we have had experience with this product ourselves.

Rick
Reply
CarolMeador Premium
That true. I could say that I dance in Caprezios, which I did, but couldn't say the same about the men's shoes! It's so refreshing to be with a group of honest people who are concerned about delivering quality information and content with inherent honesty. We are so fortunate to have found WA! Carol
Reply
DianneBee Premium
I think that's a good way to do it. I read the Amazon and other sites' reviews about products and quote snippets or talk about them.
Reply
NicoAlpaca Premium
I guess you need to disclose how you did the review. If you own the product you share your experience with the reader. If you do not own the product but a member of your family or friends have it, just say that. Same goes with your reading. Give references. You will not get into trouble that way. I did not get into reviews yet but I have worked as a quality Assurance rep for a Navy company and I know when you say something, you need to back it up with evidence.
Reply
Belden22 Premium
Ok, I really like this idea. Being up front about whether the review was hands on or is based on other people opinions, reviews and technical specifications would be a great idea.

Thanks,
Rick
Reply
BrendonB Premium
There is some great advice found here from others that have commented. I would just like to add a few things because I was once in your boat.

The first and most important thing in my opinion is to make the review helpful. If you have not or can not get the product, Do Your Research. Then you can write the review as the experience of others.

For example I recently did a review on a diet program that I did not try. After researching the product thoroughly. I wrote the review as though my sister had tried it and she experienced this or that.

While some may disagree with the practice, it is an effective way to do a review on a product you can not use. There is no way I could try every diet out there, although I still want to help my readers make the right decision for them.

You MUST however try to keep your readers in mind and make the review helpful. As with the diet example, while I myself did not use it, I was able to find many that have, it was a great product overall, so naturally I wanted to share it with my readers.

If you are review a physical product, you can easily go to a store that sells the product and actually get your hands on it. I know of a lot of people that do product reviews in this way.

Another thing I would like to point out. If you have used or reviewed a similar product. You could then use your experience and knowledge of that product, combined with your research of the product you want to review to write a good useful review.

While your goal should always be to help your readers and provide true and accurate information. You also must understand that you are a marketer, and your job is to sell. After all that is the point of starting an online business in the end.

Think of the car company Fiat as an example. For a year or two they ran adds using Jennifer Lopez as their spokesperson. I may be wrong, but with the money she has, I do not believe you would ever find her driving a Fiat. Its all about marketing...

If you think about any major retailer in your town or city. It would be impossible for a store owner or manager to know everything and have tried everything they sell in their stores. We do very much the same thing.

Use your best judgement, do your research and be sure your content is helpful. If you doubt or question the quality of a product you are providing, don't do the review. Also always protect your readers, be sure if you are selling them a product, that is has a refund or guarantee backing it up.

At the end of the day you are a marketer. Whether on line or in the real world you goal is to make sales that make you a profit. Don't be misleading and rip anyone off, but also don't be afraid to use a little smoke screen once in awhile.



Cheers,
Brendon
Reply
fondevilla Premium
I have liked this one. Thanks so much
Reply
Belden22 Premium
Excellent thoughts.

You made a lot of great points there and this, along with all these other comments, really helps me a lot.

Rick
Reply
DianneBee Premium
Good reply, glad I read it!
Reply
redbiro Premium
How true Brendon, I serve customers in a store. I have not personally tried every lolly, every drink, every biscuit, yet I sell them. Great analogy, thanks Dave
Reply
JeannineC Premium
I always try to buy the product or at least study it on display at a store. Doing so ensures that I have complete information on the product, which means that I can wrote a better article and likely sell more.

If you live in the US and you buy something for this purpose it is tax deductible, and you can get a credit if you donate it too.
Reply
Belden22 Premium
I think that is something I often forget about doing; looking at the product in the store. You can usually take a product out of the box to look at it more closely, at least in some stores and some products.

Thank you for the idea.

Rick
Reply
sdawson Premium
Rick, I know where you are coming from. So far my Reviews have been on products I've purchased myself. I agree that it seems a little "wrong" to review a product you haven't even touched. But I do agree that thorough research should help greatly with doing a review of a product you haven't touched. That's what I plan to do.

Recently I signed up on Clickbank to be an affiliate for the Back to Life system and I didn't purchase the video product myself. However, I did go to Amazon and purchase the author's companion book for myself and read it (cheaper for me). I'm doing research now on the full product that I'll be promoting. I'll be writing a review and also telling how the exercises from the book have affected my own back pain. (I'll promote the book from Amazon also). - Shirley
Reply
Belden22 Premium
Thank you. That is a great idea also.

Rick
Reply
AaronGriffin Premium
It's difficult to write reviews without the product in hand, but you can always research the product and read testimonials from people who have used the product. After this I guess it's more like a review from another's perspective, but based around your own judgements of what was shown or read.
It kinda sucks to do it like this, but it works. And the more you do and the more you learn about some of these products you can sometimes reach out to the company yourself and explain that you do product reviews and you have a blog or website and would like to showcase one their products. If you get one to test you can then make a video review!
I wish you the best Rick, your friend, Aaron G
Reply
Belden22 Premium
That is a great idea about getting the product to review from the company. I want to say that Jay mentioned this in one of his training videos.

I need to look into that.

Rick
Reply
AaronGriffin Premium
Happy to help. :)
Reply
Steven-A Premium
it s a conundrum and hard to compete with companies that have big budgets to do product reviews like America's Test Kitchen.
You just have to do your research and add whatever insights you can. Then, when we're making a lot of money at WA buy and test everything we want to review.
Reply
jlclayton1 Premium
I have struggled with that myself. To date, I have only done 1 review on something I didn't purchase and spent 2 days trying to get it right because it ended up being a negative review.

I spent hours researching and finding out every possible positive and negative piece of info out there. Before actually writing the review, I wrote 2 lists--one with things I could know for sure because it came directly from the company and 1 with things that I could reasonably know from all of the research I did online. When I knew I had enough valid information to write an accurate review that I could stand by, I felt comfortable writing it.

Reviews are the most time-consuming articles for me because I know the integrity of my site depends on accurate information.
Reply
CarolMeador Premium
I really like your idea of making the 2 lists like that. I'm going to do that for the next review I'm working on. Thanks for sharing that idea.

I agree that reviews are the most time consuming articles to write because of the amount of research necessary.
Reply
maesitas Premium
ahí está mi mejor crítica para WA:
como no es multinivel, no competimos entre nosotros, por lo que cualquier miembro puede darte una mano de ayuda (no tienes que martirizar a tu patrocinador con preguntas de ayuda, etc.) y también tiene un premio , esto no ocurre en otros sitios de blogs,

Otro punto, son las herramientas, no te pierdas en internet buscando un dominio, o haciéndolo funcionar, o cortando fotos, Kyle se encargó de todo esto, las herramientas que obtienes desde el primer día, luego cuando vas a Premium te da una rosa, ya que hay mucho más,

y luego cuando subes a la montaña y te diviertes aún mejor ...

mejor la escalada grupal, y los que llegaron te dicen pero también quieres ver y contar, me levanto y me divierto, leyendo todos los días las evaluaciones por pares,

Me encantó la crítica que hiciste del omrom, realmente es un buen dispositivo,

no conozco el afilorama, sé un poco de Empower Network y Wasanga no tiene nada para mí.

Voy a ir solo, pero en un grupo jajaja amo al grupo ... pero solo jajajja
Reply
Belden22 Premium
Hi Maesitas.

I had to use the spanish to english Google translator on the internet but thank you for your advice.

Rick
Reply
HowardJaros Premium
I agree with you, Rick! I am the same way.

I like to review things that I use and believe in. On my reviews, I give personal experience with the product because I actually own and use it. My conversions are better too.

Now, that does not mean we can't review without owning the product, but like you stated, it so much easier to write the review. Plus, you can add a video of you playing with the product which adds to the trust factor. Or at least have photos.

I also think people can realize that a review is fake compared to someone who writes one and actually uses and likes, or dislikes, the product once they have had personal experience with it. They see the review is legit!

Just my thoughts, at least for me and how I operate my business. The word ethics comes to mind.
Reply