When shopping online it’s hard to ignore those smooth sliding pop-ups typically in the bottom left-hand corner of the page.
Social proof pop-ups are a popular way for store owners to show visitors how popular their store is, and importantly that they have customers!
There is little denying they are convincing. The evidence is in the numbers and they show that used correctly Social Proof notifications they can increase conversion rates – by 15% according to TrustPulse.
Sometime ago I decided to go with WooCommerce for my e-commerce store. It’s one of the most adaptable platforms around. So I researched which social proof plugins would work best for my WooCommerce site.
With so many options to choose from, I decided to test 5 social proof plugins (TrustPulse, WP Real-Time Social-Proof, WooCommerce Notification Premium, WooBought Pro and FOMO) to see which ones worked best for my store and could do for yours too.
Social Proof Plugins I Tested
Most of the plugs have a freemium version available, which is a great way to test out how well this works for your site.
In reality, you only get to find out how well it works by purchasing the full versions and testing it out in a live environment. So, I went ahead and bought a single site license to all five Social Proof plugins.
All in, I spent in total around $250 testing out 5 different social proof plugins.
Installing and testing these plugins wasn’t fun. You just have to ask my wife this week from the frustrating noises I was making from my home office!
Although the idea behind how social proof plugins work is simple, I found they were are anything but similar in how they actually work in real life.
I first signed up for TrustPulse because I was shown a persuasive cross-selling email from OptinMonster. It was only after experiencing issues with their integration (and support), that I decided to research some alternatives, more on that below.
Social Proof Plugin Reviews
TrustPulse (OptinMonster company)
First became aware of TrustPulse when I was cross-sold shortly after signing up for OptinMonster.
It just goes to show how effective those cross-sells are, especially for SaaS products!
I was pleased with how OptinMonster was working and so thought I would try TrustPulse and so purchased the 10,000 sessions package at $79 per annum (you get 20% off being an OptinMonster customer).
There is a cheaper “Basic” package at just $39 per site, but the number of allowed sessions per month is only 2,500, and so only really works for small sites.
To capture order details, you need to specify the page to get the data from, including the order confirmation page. This worked initially for my site and then stopped working, I am not sure why.
When it worked, it did look really good. If it stops working though, you’re going to out of luck because their support sucks BIG TIME.
It was an incredibly frustrating experience trying to get any support from TrustPulse despite on their website saying they have “expert support from real people”.
I very rarely managed to get ANY response from the “real people” to the point that in the end I switched if off and canceled it.
I won’t be using TrustPulse EVER again. A really rubbish experience that wasted a lot of my time.
- Social proof popup looks good
- Hosted solution, so no plugin to install
- Completely rubbish support, numerous follow ups and nothing
- Data capture requires some figuring out and it if breaks, tough luck
The TrustPulse Social proof notification does look impressive both on desktop and mobile, but the support is so bad that if anything goes wrong you’re literally left hanging with no service!
Official Site: https://trustpulse.com/
UPDATE: Support did eventually get in touch with me and offered to refund my purchase, so good on them.
WP Real-Time Social-Proof
The annual license for WP Real-time Social proof costs $77, which considering its for unlimited sites is really good value.
You can configure the social proof plugin to show live sales, realtime visitors, sales milestones, and custom call to actions.
In fact, you configure to show one or more (or all) of the notification if you so. You can also set up your preference for the order of the proofs.
I was impressed with the ability to configure each of these notifications!
There is reasonable support available and they do actually get back to you well within 24 hours, so I was really happy with their response times.
They were keen to resolve any issues I had too.
What I didn’t like about their social proof notification is the fact the alert only ever showed “GUEST” and not the customer’s first name. I did reach out to support about this and they said this is the only option at the moment if the customer doesn’t have an account in WordPress.
This is strange as all the other plugins manage to achieve pulling out the first name from the order itself, without having them as a WordPress user.
I also noticed for one of my notifications on mobile there was a large amount of white space below it, which took up a lot of space. This only seemed to happen for one particular notification, the rest were showing fine.
- Can configure different types of social proof notification
- Display customer map
- Well priced for multiple store owners
- Decent support
- Customer map is generic – would have been good to have proper geo-ip
- Only shows “guest” instead of first name
The best social proof plugin for anyone on a budget. Works really well out of the box with no issues other than no customer name or geo.
Official Site: https://wp-social-proof.com/
WooBought Pro is developed by StudioWombat who offers a few WordPress plugins.
It’s a quick and easy plugin that is really cheap. Single site license costs just $29 per annum, 3 sites $49, and for unlimited sites cost $109.
Out of the box I wasn’t much of a fan as it looked a little on the cheap and untidy side. The notification shows the product thumbnail, but for me, this was always truncated and so looked really sloppy.
Here is a screenshot of how this looked on my site.
For just $29 though, it’s a cost-effective way to show recent orders on your site.
- Very cheap for up to 3 sites
- Quick to install and have live
- Only shows product image thumbnail and its squashed
- Looked a little cheap
Quick and easy to install that is very cheap. It does look a little untidy though as the product image is truncated.
Official Site: https://www.studiowombat.com/plugin/woobought/
WooCommerce Notification Premium
I stumbled across this plugin on the EnvatoMarket place on CodeCanyon and was super cheap at just $30 for the regular single site license.
You can buy an extended license that means you can use it on unlimited websites for $175.
Just like WooBought Pro, this is easy to set up and configure but I found that the product image was also truncated. (see the picture below).
Considering the options available it makes more sense to go with WP Social Proofs if you’re looking for a plugin that’s wallet-friendly.
- Very cheap
- Report of the number of clicks
- 6 months of support
- Only shows product image thumbnail and its squashed
- Not the most professional looking
FOMO – Best Overall
FOMO, or as the acronym refers to “Fear of Missing Out”, is a monthly or annual subscription Social Proof plugin and so is one of the most expensive options tested here.
If you have a successful store, and you’re not on a tight (and I mean super tight) budget, then FOMO Social Proof is an ideal option. (Subscribing to their annual plan gives you a 30% saving.)
Setting up FOMO is straight forward as they have both a WordPress Plugin and option to use their API to connect directly. Where possible I prefer to avoid adding more WordPress Plugins if I can help it!
Super easy with lots of configuration options available, which means you can use this for pretty much anything you want.
You can see from the partial screenshot below how good FOMO social proof notifications look.
Debugging is really easy too, for those technically inclined. You can use the FOMO Inspector that brings up your site with all the options selected, so you can go through them one by one.
This is the first time I have seen this feature, it’s super cool.
If you’re keen to avoid adding to the list of WordPress plugins (like I am), then you can set this up without it. Or if you need help and want an even easier integration then there is a FOMO WordPress Plugin too.
The API pulls in WooCommerce orders every hour and you can see how this looks in the “events” section of FOMO. This allows you to remove them if you wish.
FOMO is a professional-looking service with functionality to match and far outmatches TrustPulse and the other cheaper plugins.
The only reason FOMO didn’t achieve a perfect 10/10 score is because of the price.
- Lots of configuration options available
- Customer details and geographical maps
- Easy to install WordPress Plugin or API
- Multiple site integrations
- Most expensive option, can save 30% with annual payment
- Support knowledge-base lacked some basic information
My favourite social proof plugin and SaaS tool for showing visitors recent customers. Simple to set-up with lots of configuration options. The only downside is the cost.
Official Site: https://fomo.com/ – 1st Month COMPLETELY FREE
Considerations when buying Social Proof Plugins
Although many of these plugins will be fine for most general use if you’re not as particular as I am. In case you want a plugin that has a particular feature, I have put together this quick little round-up.
WooCommerce Social Proof Round Up
- Show customer geographical maps: FOMO / TrustPulse
- API integration: FOMO / TrustPulse
- Cheapest Social Proof Plugins: WP Real-Time Social-Proof / WooCommerce Notification Premium / WooBought Pro
- Best customer support: WP Real-Time Social-Proof
- Most configurable settings: FOMO
- Multisite license: FOMO
Which is the Best WooCommerce Social Proof Plugin?
Most work reasonably well out of the box by simply activating the WordPress plugin and toggling a checkbox to enable.
Any SaaS tool is only going to be as good as the support behind it. This is where TrustPulse failed big time, otherwise, they would have been the product/service that I would have selected.
To get started without spending any money for a plugin then the best cheap social proof plugin is WP Social Proof. I do prefer the options you get for the paid version and it’s not a lot of money, especially considering the unlimited license you get.
If cost is not so much a factor and you want a lot more configuration options and have multiple sites in one place, then FOMO is the best all-round social proof plugin.
Best WooCommerce Social Proof Plugin: FOMO
FOMO is super easy to install and gives you the ability to configure the social proof notifications however you like. This makes this the most adaptable Social Proof Plugin and SaaS tool around.
It’s why I have decided to use FOMO for my store and why you should check it out too!