The 6 Best Social Proof Apps to Increase Sales in 2021 and Beyond (Review)

In this review, we’re looking at social proof apps for e-commerce stores and how they can help you build trust, credibility and boost your sales in 2021!

We will cover what social proof is, how it works and why it is so important. We then go on to review the 6 best social proof apps available and select out two top picks!

Convincing a hesitant customer to buy from an online store is hugely challenging, and frustrating, for store owners.

Online, new customers have no way of gauging the quality of the product and no way of seeing how others are perceiving the product. They also have no way of knowing how helpful you will be or how many issues they will encounter when purchasing from you.

No matter how wonderful your products, your customer service, and your storefront are, that uncertainty and hesitation will lose you massive amounts of revenue.

That is where social proof comes in! With social proof, you can show your customers how popular your store is and how happy other customers are. Social proof is the best way to overcome buyer hesitation and uncertainty by improving trust and your store’s credibility.

Social proof apps provide a simple and easy way for you to present social proof to your customers. Examples of social proof content includes reviews, product ratings, testimonials, user-generated content, and real-time pop-up messages.

Ready to learn more about how to use social proof for your store?

Let’s jump right in!  

    What is Social Proof?

    Social proof is a marketing practice that provides customers with reassuring ‘proof’ from their peers to support their purchasing decision.

    Any content generated by a shopper’s social peers that supports the brand can be used as social proof. Examples include user reviews, testimonials, social media likes and shares, customer ratings on products, and real-time notifications that show others buying while your customer is browsing.

    When people shop online, there are a whole host of social interactions and cues they’re missing out on. Social proof is the best way to give those to your customers and boost your sales in the process.   

    Image text says: Social Proof - Online Conversions increase by 133% when shoppers see user generated content, ratings and reviews on a site before buying

    As humans, we’re social creatures. We constantly look to those around us for cues on how to behave and reassurance that we’re doing the right thing, in any given situation.

    Ever sat down at a restaurant and looked around the table to see what everyone else was drinking before you ordered? If everyone was drinking wine, you probably wouldn’t order tequila shots.

    At that moment, you were uncertain of the correct action to take so you looked to your peers. The psychologist Robert Cialdini wrote “we view a behavior as more correct in a given situation to the degree that we see others performing it” in his book Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion.

    This is amplified in unfamiliar situations where we feel undecided. Seeing what others do and have a positive reaction and response to, influences what we do and the outcome we expect to achieve.

    First-time shoppers who haven’t bought from you before or repeat shoppers who haven’t tried a new product are likely to be a little uncertain of their choices and need a little nudge, in the form of social proof, to get them to make the purchase.  

    How Does Social Proof Work for E-commerce?  

    In marketing and sales, social proof is how you give your e-commerce customers a way to get that some social reassurance, even though they’re alone in front of a device rather than surrounded by people to cue their behavior.

    In a brick-and-mortar store, customers physically see and touch the item. They can make a pretty good evaluation of its quality and perceived value without much uncertainly. And if they are uncertain, they can look around the store to see what others are doing, which often cues their next action.

    If people are putting things back on the shelf and waking out, they will likely do the same. If people are confidently grabbing more items and heading off to pay, they will be much more likely to buy.   

    In e-commerce, social proof apps are how you give your customers that same experience. It is how you show them that people just like them are buying your products and loving them.

    When people see other people demonstrating their satisfaction and approval, they immediately trust that they will have the same experience with the product. They immediately feel that the site is credible, trustworthy, and popular.

    Social proof is also how you give your customers that same sense of urgency as when there are only two items left on the shelf and someone else is eyeing them out. They might have been undecided about the item but when they see someone going for it, they suddenly don’t want to lose it so they buy it.

    Social proof gives you a way to increase trust and credibility, show your customers that others value your store, and nudge them towards making a purchase they’re confident in.

    Check out this video on social proof from Kirk Buchanan on YouTube for how social proof can help new stores:

    Here are easy some ways to use social proof on your e-commerce site:

    1. Have reviews and testimonials on your landing page so that the first thing people see is how happy other customers have been.
    2. Show logos for brands or prominent people who use your products.
    3. Display user-generated content (UGC) to showcase how other customers have used and enjoyed your products.  
    4. Show the number of people who have bought the product on the product page.
    5. Emphasize users who have endorsed the product with a snapshot review or rating.
    6. Indicate products you want to promote with ‘best seller’ or ‘popular choice’ banners.
    7. Display social shares and likes (if you have enough for it to be a positive element).
    8. Recommend products with lines like “others also viewed” or “frequently purchased together”  
    9. Display any expert or influencer reviews, endorsements, or testimonials under the specific product.
    10. Use full names and add a picture of their face to all reviews to make them authentic and human.
    11. Indicate how many stock items are left when stock runs low and use timers and countdowns to create a small sense of urgency.

    These small additions create an atmosphere for your online store. It gives the customer a sense of being in a busy and vibrant place where people are actively buying and enjoying your products.

    10 Important Social Proof Statistics

    The importance of social proof has been well studied and understood. Here are 10 stats to illustrate the value of social proof for sales and e-commerce:

    1. 87% of buying decisions begin with research conducted online before a purchase is made (Conversionxl)
    2. 91% of shoppers between the ages of 18 and 34 trust social proof reviews as much as a recommendation from someone close to them (Brightlocal)
    3. 70% of people trust a recommendation from another person, even if they don’t know them, personally, more than they trust a recommendation from a brand or company (Nielsen)
    4. 63% of consumers are more likely to purchase from a website with product ratings and reviews (SEJ)
    5. 71% of people are more likely to purchase if they have seen a referral on social media (HubSpot)
    6. 133% increase in online conversions when shoppers see UGC, ratings and reviews on a site before buying (Bazaar)
    7. 54% of people have bought a consumer packaged good because they saw it in UGC (Stackla)
    8. 61% of shoppers read online reviews before they choose to make a purchase (Econsultancy)
    9. 70% of Americans seek out opinions from independent review sites before making purchases (Mintel)
    10. 35% of consumers said they would pay more for a similar option online if it had better reviews (Salsify)

    These numbers demonstrate just how important social proof is for improving sales. Getting your social proof content in front of your customers is essential for improving trust, credibility, and, of course, sales!  

    The 6 Best Social Proof Apps

    So, what is the best way to get your social proof content onto your site and in front of your customers?

    This can be a complicated and time-consuming task, that constantly needs updating to stay relevant and vibrant. Luckily, there are some great social proof apps you can add to your Shopify store!

    There are literally hundreds of social proof apps on the Shopify app store so to make it easy, we have reviewed the 6 best options here:

    1. Fomo Social Proof App

    The Fomo social proof app displays reviews, recent orders, visitor counts, and a variety of other user activities on your home and product pages. It is a great option for social proof and offers a wide range of functions and messages. The app also offers automation and customization, which is great for creating exactly what you need for your unique store.

    The app integrates with Shopify and several other e-commerce tools, including Facebook, Instagram, Zapier, Stripe, TrustPilot, Yotpo, and MailChimp. It also connects to Google Analytics and Slack.

    Screenshot of the Fomo Social Proof App Homepage

    Key social proof messages and notifications provided:

    • Live traffic counts
    • Recent and live sales, subscribers, users
    • Recent site updates to let customers know they can use a new feature
    • Live locations and location-specific notifications

    Pros and Cons

    Pros:

    • Doesn’t impact page loading speed
    • Helpful customer service
    • Good analytics
    • Quick and easy to install and set up
    • Very user friendly and easy to use
    • Several reviewers noted an increase in conversion rate after doing their own A/B testing

    Cons:

    • Unclear pricing plans and surprise cost increases
    • Occasional glitches with external review site integrations
    • Slow customer service at times

    Shopify App Score: 4.5 /5 (200+ reviews)

    Pricing:

    • Free Trial: 14 Days
    • Pro: $19/month – 25 000 notifications
    • Business: $39/month – 50 000 notifications
    • Advanced: $79/month – 250 000 notifications
    • Enterprise: $199/month – 3 000 000 notifications

    Website: Fomo

    2. Fera Product Reviews & Social Proof App

    The Fera social proof app offers a robust suite of functions and works as an ai powered salesperson on your site. The app offers a wide number of social proof messages, as well as image carousels, countdown timers, and special offers. It also offers A/B testing within the app so you can see which notifications are working best.

    It offers great customization and automation so you can make it look and feel just right for your store. One of Fera’s strengths is how it manages product reviews, photo reviews, video reviews, and testimonials on your site.

    Fera is also compatible with Yotpo, Loox, Stamped, Shop Product Reviews, Smile.io, and Judge.me to integrate external customer reviews and more.

    Screenshot of the Fera Social Proof App Homepage

    Key social proof messages and notifications provided:

    • Testimonial popup notifications
    • Real-time and recent purchase popup notifications
    • Real-time viewer counters on individual products
    • Recent sales counter on individual products
    • Scarcity/low stock notifications on individual items
    • Average ratings for products reviewed

    Pros and Cons

    Pros:

    • Great customer support
    • Very customizable
    • Easy to install and set up
    • Good analytics

    Cons:

    • Some reviewers noted that it was expensive for their needs and had billing/overcharging issues
    • Buggy and integration issues
    • Not user friendly and the dashboard is not intuitive  

    Shopify App Score: 4.9/5 (2900+ reviews)

    Pricing:

    • Free Trial: 14 Days
    • Basic: $9/month – start-up/less than $5000 per month revenue
    • Small: $29/month – small business/$5000 to $50 000 monthly revenue
    • Medium: $99/month – medium business/$50 000 to $200 000 monthly revenue
    • Custom: Contact Fera for a quotation

    Website: Fera

    3. Nudgify Social Proof & Fomo App

    The Nudgify social proof app works really well in Shopify, it integrates fully and is very easy to set up. They offer a robust suite of social proof messages or ‘nudges’, including custom messages and pop-ups. The app also offers messages for urgency and scarcity, including countdown times and low stock counts.

    Nudgify offers a useful group function to allow you to target and segment customers into groups and send them specific nudges. It also offers good analytics and is available in 16 languages.

    Screenshot of the Nudgify Social Proof App homepage

    Key social proof messages and notifications provided:

    • Popularity Nudge – Number of people who have viewed an item
    • Selling Fast Nudge – When an item is likely to sell out
    • Low Stock Nudge – number of items left in stock
    • Free Delivery Nudge – order amount for free delivery
    • Cart Counter Nudge – Number of items in the cart
    • Discount Nudge – Shoppers can apply an offer/discount from within the pop-up
    • Custom Nudge – Can include custom text and media, links, or offers

    Pros and Cons

    Pros:

    • Easy to set up and install
    • User-friendly interface
    • Prompt customer support
    • Easy to customize themes and create custom messages
    • Good value and functionality on the free plan

    Cons:

    • Issues with refunds for upgrades not used
    • Does not provide demo messages – new stores will only see pop-ups when real sales are made
    • Takes a while for pop-ups to show on new stores/stores that aren’t making many sales

    Shopify App Score: 4.6/5 (45+ reviews)

    Pricing:

    • Free Trial: 14 Days
    • Free-Forever Plan: $0/month – 1000 notifications per month
    • Plus: $9/month – 10 000 notifications per month
    • Pro: $29/month – 100 000 notifications per month
    • Business: $89/month – 1 000 000 notifications per month

    Website: Nudgify

    4. Bizzy Social Proof App

    The Bizzy social proof app is a simple and inexpensive option. The app only offers a recent activity (purchases or sign-ups) message but it also offers other useful functions like retargeting, analytics, and source and medium tracking. It also integrates with Google analytics. Pop-ups are visually customizable and available in multiple languages.

    Screenshot of the Bizzy Social Proof App homepage

    Key social proof messages and notifications provided:

    • Recent activity – live sales and sign-ups (you can set how long the pop-up will be active after activity)

    Pros and Cons

    Pros:

    • Very simple to use once it is set up
    • Does exactly what it says it will do
    • Inexpensive option
    • Customizable
    • Helpful customer support  

    Cons:

    • Order syncing can be slow
    • Initial set up and setting parameters can be tricky

    Shopify App Score: 4.7/5 (710+ reviews)

    Pricing:

    • Free Trial: 14 Days
    • Paid: $6.99/month

    Website: Bizzy Social Proof (Pixel Union)

    5. ProveSource Social Proof App

    ProveSource works by combining various external tools and integrations to gather and display social proof messages and pop-ups on your site. Integrations include Google, Zapier, Integromat, Klaviyo Omnisend, Stamped, Judge.me, Trustpilot, and Facebook.

    The app offers great visual customization options to match your brand aesthetic. It supports location and language customization for 22 languages.   

    In addition to social proof notifications for recent activity and store data, it allows you to share reviews, events/promotions, and informational messages. This is great for stores with low real-time activity or new stores.

    Screenshot of the ProveSource Social Proof App homepage

    Key social proof messages and notifications provided:

    • Recent activity – real-time purchases and sign-ups
    • Reviews and review pop-ups
    • Clickable pop-ups and notifications
    • Custom pop-ups

    Pros and Cons

    Pros:

    • Very easy to set up
    • Simple and user-friendly interface
    • Great customer support
    • Customizable and unobtrusive  
    • Several reviews noted an improved conversion rate

    Cons:

    • Issues with refunds/customer support regarding refunds
    • Only 1000 unique visitors on the free trial option
    • Can be an expensive option for sites with high traffic

    Shopify App Score: 4.9/5 (190+ reviews)

    Pricing:

    • Free Trial: 14 Days
    • Starter: $18/month – 10,000 visitors
    • Growth: $45/month – 50,000 visitors
    • Monster: $91/month – 200,000 visitors
    • Gorilla: $183/month – 500,000 visitors
    • Enterprise: Contact ProveSource for a custom quotation

    Website: ProveSource

    6. Nextsale Social Proof App

    The Nextsale social proof app offers a full suite of social proof messages, including recent activity, reviews, count-down timers, free shipping and promotions pop-ups. It also allows you to collect email and SMS lists, and display user-generated content (UGC).

    It integrates with Stipe, Mailchimp, Trustpilot, Yotpo, Stamped.io, Judge.me, reviews.io, and Capterra for external reviews and testimonials. Messages and pop-ups are customizable and can be used to promote sales or special offers as well.

    Screenshot of the Nextsale social proof app home page

    Key social proof messages and notifications provided:

    • Recent sales/conversions notifications
    • Live user count and product view count
    • Product Review notifications
    • Orders count notifications
    • Promote Special Offers
    • Countdown timers
    • Cart timer
    • Free Shipping bar
    • Email and phone number capture popups and bars
    • Exit-intent discount popup
    • Discount popup with countdown

    Pros and Cons

    Pros:

    • Customizable branding
    • Offers tracking
    • Excellent customer support that is responsive and thorough
    • Allows for bulk notifications (e.g., “12 recent purchases”)
    • Doesn’t slow the site down
    • Easy and quick to use

    Cons:

    • One reviewer was uncomfortable with the number of visits her site had from people from the app whenever she made changes to her campaigns.

    Shopify App Score: 5/5 (230+ reviews)

    Pricing:

    • Free Trial: 14 Days of any paid plan
    • Free Forever: $0/month –  1,000 Monthly Impressions
    • Basic: $29/month – 20,000 Monthly Impressions
    • Growth: $99/month – 100,000 Monthly Impressions
    • Enterprise: $249/month – 500,000 Monthly Impressions

    Website: Nextsale

    Conclusion and Our Two Top Picks

    In this review, we have covered what social proof is and how it works for e-commerce stores, the importance of social proof, and presented our selection of the 6 best social proof apps available.

    We reviewed each social proof app, taking into consideration features, functions, pricing, and overall customer satisfaction. We also looked at the pros and cons of each app, based on the reviews from real users.

    You now have everything you need to know to pick the best social proof app for your store. As well as all the info you need to make the most of social proof on your site, increase your credibility and trust in the eyes of your customers, and boost your sales!

    In our reviews, we have included a variety of social proof apps to suit a variety of e-commerce stores. Of the 6 best social proof apps reviewed here, these are our two top picks:

    Top Pick #1 – Small to Medium Stores: Nextsale

    We love that Nextsale offers a full suite of social proof functions, including UGC, and integrates with external review sites. The app offers customization, automation and every single review on Spotify raved about their customer service. Nextsale has affordable, scalable, packages and a free-forever option, which makes them a great choice for those starting out and those looking to grow a small or medium-size store.

    Top Pick #2 – Medium to Large Stores: Nudgify

    We love that Nudgify works so well within Shopify and offers a comprehensive suite of social proof functions. The app also offers great analytics and tracking. The group function, to segment and target customer groups, is a great option that sets Nudgify apart from other social proof apps. Nudgify offers a free-forever plan and their paid plans are affordable and scalable up to a million notifications per month. The reviews on Shopify were very happy with customer service and value for money, which is a win in our books!

    References and Further Reading

    BigCommerce: What Is Social Proof and Why It’s Necessary for Ecommerce Success

    BigCommerce: See, Believe, Buy: The Selling Power of Social Proof

    Convertize: 14 Proven Ways to Use Social Proof in eCommerce (Tips & Examples)

    Optinmonster: Social Proof Statistics: Powerful Facts That Will Help You Boost Your Brand

    Orbelo: Social Proof: What It Is and Why It’s Great for Marketing

    Psychology Notes Headquarters: What is the Social Proof Theory?

    Sprout Social: Social Proof: How to Use Marketing Psychology to Boost Conversions

    Frequently Asked Questions

    What is social proof?

    Social proof refers to any content that shows customers that other people have bought a product or used a service and been happy with it. Reviews, ratings, testimonials, visual user generated content, pop-up messages that show real-time purchases or website activity are all examples of social proof content. Read the full review more info on social proof and the best social proof apps to use on your website.

    Why is social proof important?

    Social proof is important because it increases trust and credibility. When people see social proof on a website, they are more likely to feel confident in purchasing from that site. Some studies have shown a 133% increase in online sales conversions when shoppers can see reviews, ratings and user generated content before they purchase. Read the full review for more info and useful stats on social proof.

    What are the best social proof apps?

    We have reviewed the 6 best social proof apps in 2021: Fomo, Fera, Nudgify, Bizzy, ProveSource and Nextsale. Our two top picks are Nextsale and Nidgify. Read the full review for features, pricing, pros and cons!

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