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6 Best WordPress Review Plugins For 2023

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6 Best WordPress Review Plugins For 2023

If you sell any type of product or service on a WordPress site, you can benefit from installing a WordPress review plugin.

With reviews for your services or products and increasing social proof, you’re more likely to draw new customers to your business and retain existing ones.

Building trust and credibility through positive reviews on your website is a great way to connect with potential clients.

Not only can reviews be powerful sources of marketing, but collecting reviews is also a great source of feedback from clients and customers, allowing you to make changes and improvements to your products and customer experience and form a relationship with your customers.

In addition, reviews will increase the chance that your clients will become repeat customers, who will also be more willing to recommend you and your services or products to others.

Why Use A WordPress Review Plugin?

Using a WordPress Review plugin gives you an extremely easy way to provide dynamic professional-looking reviews on your website.

It makes it simple for users to leave a review, and many review plugins can seamlessly pull reviews from other platforms, such as Facebook or Google.

A visually interesting review interface and easy-to-use submission process make customers more likely to review your product or service.

And the more reviews you have, the more likely a new customer is to leave a review. Having reviews posted can make or break whether a potential customer or client moves on to another website.

Screenshot from WordPress, March 2023
6 Best WordPress Review Plugins For 2023Screenshot from WordPress.org, March 2023

Here are my top six WordPress plugin recommendations. These will provide an attractive and easy-to-use review process for your website.

All listed review plugins have been tested with WordPress 6.1.1 and have excellent ratings among over 50,000 users.

1. WP Review Pro

6 Best WordPress Review Plugins For 2023Screenshot from mythemeshop.com, March 2023

If you are looking for a comprehensive review plugin, you cannot go wrong with WP Review Pro.

WP Review Free includes all of the basic features, but it is well worth the $67 to upgrade to the Pro version for unlimited sites to unlock the full feature set.

With WP Review Pro, you get unlimited color selections and various rating options, such as stars, percentages, thumbs up/down, points, or a circle rating.

The plugin supports 19 rich snippets, 16 predefined designs, multiple rating systems, user comment ratings, and compatibility with any WordPress theme.

It also works seamlessly with Facebook, Google, and Yelp reviews to extend your reach.

Its highly customizable pre-defined designs make matching your branding or other popular review platforms easy.

2. Site Reviews

6 Best WordPress Review Plugins For 2023Screenshot from WordPress.org, March 2023

Site Reviews is a simple review plugin that allows users to leave a review through a customized form.

Reviews use a 1- to 5-star system and are filterable.

You can also pin favorable reviews to the top so that they are the first reviews that customers see.

The plugin can be used as a shortcode, custom Gutenberg block, or widget, and it supports native Elementor widgets to accommodate various theme and builder types and is free.

Site Reviews is one of the most full-featured free review plugins available, and its support for the plugin on the WordPress forum is excellent.

3. Plugin For Google Reviews

6 Best WordPress Review Plugins For 2023Screenshot from WordPress.org, March 2023

Plugin for Google Reviews specifically displays ratings and reviews from Google using a public Google API.

The free version will limit you to displaying five Google reviews. In contrast, the Business version, which runs $85/year for a single site, uses an API for your Google Business account, allowing unlimited Google reviews.

The upgrade will also give you unlimited Yelp and Facebook reviews and sync your accounts for automatic updates.

You can also mix and match reviews; customers can leave reviews through your website for other platforms.

Want to put your best reviews at the top? Use the filter feature to display reviews in the order you want.

Five themes are available, and reviews can be displayed using a widget, shortcode, any of the following page builders: Gutenberg, Elementor, Page Origin, Beaver Builder, WPBakery, Divi, and others, or Universal HTML/JavaScript.

4. Customer Reviews For WooCommerce

6 Best WordPress Review Plugins For 2023Screenshot from WordPress.org, March 2023

The Customer Reviews for WooCommerce plugin allows customers who shopped in your store to leave written reviews and photos to increase your social proof and attract more customers.

This plugin is localized to over 40 languages and installed in over 50,000 stores.

You can have an email automatically sent when a customer purchases asking them to leave a review. You can even send coupons to those that do leave a review.

The plugin also integrates with a service to verify the authenticity of reviews. It uses ratings, voting review types, and customer-submitted photos. Reviews can also be filtered.

There is a free Basic version, but you will want to consider the Professional version for more customization and professional features for $49.99/year.

5. Starfish Reviews

6 Best WordPress Review Plugins For 2023Screenshot from starfish.reviews, March 2023

The Starfish Reviews plugin sorts positive and negative reviews using a funnel system.

The plugin is set up in the WordPress dashboard and can link to Google, Yelp, Facebook, and several other third-party review platforms.

A positive or negative review choice is shown in the first step of the review.

If the positive review is chosen, you give the customer single or multiple options of where they can leave their review.

If a negative review is chosen, the feedback will be sent back to you, and you can be prompted for more information.

Depending on the restrictions of the review platform(s) you are using, you can choose not to allow them to post a negative review or allow it.

A very limited version of the plugin is available for free on WordPress.org.

The Starfish Reviews plugin also has multiple paid tiers starting at $37 per month for one WordPress site and up to $197 per month for 50 WordPress sites.

6. Taqyeem

6 Best WordPress Review Plugins For 2023Screenshot from codecanyon.net, March 2023

The Taqyeem WordPress Review Plugin creates beautiful custom reviews that can be added to pages, posts, and custom post types.

You have unlimited color and review criteria customizations with a choice of over 500 Google fonts to match various branding.

Rating styles are points, percentages, and stars; multiple options are available for the rating image. Reviews can be displayed by Best, Recent, and Random.

The Taqyeem plugin uses Google Rich Snippets for optimal viewing through search engines.

It has a one-time purchase price of $29 through CodeCanyon, which includes six months of support. Additional support can be purchased.

What Is The Best WordPress Review Plugin?

The best WordPress review plugin for you will have the most customizable templates and an easy setup for the type of reviews you want to display, and it should best showcase the views for your website.

You should also select the one that is comfortable to use and fits the needs of your website.

For an all-encompassing WordPress review plugin, my recommendation is WP Review Pro.

This premium plugin offers the broadest range of options, with integrations across multiple social platforms and WooCommerce.

It allows the most flexibility and overall customizations of the plugins I reviewed. It also offers free and paid versions.

How To Choose The Best WordPress Review Plugin For You

With over 1,000 WordPress review plugins available to choose from, it can be hard to know where to begin.

As with choosing any plugin, you want to ensure the review plugin you install on your WordPress site will be reliable and safe.

Be mindful of the star rating, reviews, active installations, and compatibility with the latest version of WordPress.

When browsing plugins, you will see a star rating and the number of reviews in brackets. The higher the star rating and the number of reviews, the better.

You also want to check how many active installations the plugin has.

Again, the higher the number of active installations, the better, as this means that more people are using the plugin on their website.

And lastly, make sure the plugin has been tested with the latest version of WordPress.

More Resources:


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No Algorithmic Actions For Site Reputation Abuse Yet

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Looking up at an angle at the Google sign on the Head Office for Canada

Google’s Search Liaison, Danny Sullivan, has confirmed that the search engine hasn’t launched algorithmic actions targeting site reputation abuse.

This clarification addresses speculation within the SEO community that recent traffic drops are related to Google’s previously announced policy update.

Sullivan Says No Update Rolled Out

Lily Ray, an SEO professional, shared a screenshot on Twitter showing a significant drop in traffic for the website Groupon starting on May 6.

Ray suggested this was evidence that Google had begun rolling out algorithmic penalties for sites violating the company’s site reputation abuse policy.

However, Sullivan quickly stepped in, stating:

“We have not gone live with algorithmic actions on site reputation abuse. I well imagine when we do, we’ll be very clear about that. Publishers seeing changes and thinking it’s this — it’s not — results change all the time for all types of reasons.”

Sullivan added that when the actions are rolled out, they will only impact specific content, not entire websites.

This is an important distinction, as it suggests that even if a site has some pages manually penalized, the rest of the domain can rank normally.

Background On Google’s Site Reputation Abuse Policy

Earlier this year, Google announced a new policy to combat what it calls “site reputation abuse.”

This refers to situations where third-party content is published on authoritative domains with little oversight or involvement from the host site.

Examples include sponsored posts, advertorials, and partner content that is loosely related to or unrelated to a site’s primary purpose.

Under the new policy, Google is taking manual action against offending pages and plans to incorporate algorithmic detection.

What This Means For Publishers & SEOs

While Google hasn’t launched any algorithmic updates related to site reputation abuse, the manual actions have publishers on high alert.

Those who rely heavily on sponsored content or partner posts to drive traffic should audit their sites and remove any potential policy violations.

Sullivan’s confirmation that algorithmic changes haven’t occurred may provide temporary relief.

Additionally, his statements also serve as a reminder that significant ranking fluctuations can happen at any time due to various factors, not just specific policy rollouts.


FAQ

Will Google’s future algorithmic actions impact entire websites or specific content?

When Google eventually rolls out algorithmic actions for site reputation abuse, these actions will target specific content rather than the entire website.

This means that if certain pages are found to be in violation, only those pages will be affected, allowing other parts of the site to continue ranking normally.

What should publishers and SEOs do in light of Google’s site reputation abuse policy?

Publishers and SEO professionals should audit their sites to identify and remove any content that may violate Google’s site reputation abuse policy.

This includes sponsored posts and partner content that doesn’t align with the site’s primary purpose. Taking these steps can mitigate the risk of manual penalties from Google.

What is the context of the recent traffic drops seen in the SEO community?

Google claims the recent drops for coupon sites aren’t linked to any algorithmic actions for site reputation abuse. Traffic fluctuations can occur for various reasons and aren’t always linked to a specific algorithm update.


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WP Rocket WordPress Plugin Now Optimizes LCP Core Web Vitals Metric

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WP Rocket WordPress Plugin Now Optimizes LCP Core Web Vitals Metric

WP Rocket, the WordPress page speed performance plugin, just announced the release of a new version that will help publishers optimize for Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), an important Core Web Vitals metric.

Large Contentful Paint (LCP)

LCP is a page speed metric that’s designed to show how fast it takes for a user to perceive that the page is loaded and read to be interacted with. This metric measures the time it takes for the main content elements has fully loaded. This gives an idea of how usable a webpage is. The faster the LCP the better the user experience will be.

WP Rocket 3.16

WP Rocket is a caching plugin that helps a site perform faster. The way page caching generally works is that the website will store frequently accessed webpages and resources so that when someone visits the page the website doesn’t have to fetch the data from the database, which takes time, but instead will serve the webpage from the cache. This is super important when a website has a lot of site visitors because that can use a lot of server resources to fetch and build the same website over and over for every visitor.

The lastest version of WP Rocket (3.16) now contains Automatic LCP optimization, which means that it will optimize the on-page elements from the main content so that they are served first thereby raising the LCP scores and providing a better user experience.

Because it’s automatic there’s really nothing to fiddle around with or fine tune.

According to WP Rocket:

  • Automatic LCP Optimization: Optimizes the Largest Contentful Paint, a critical metric for website speed, automatically enhancing overall PageSpeed scores.
  • Smart Management of Above-the-Fold Images: Automatically detects and prioritizes critical above-the-fold images, loading them immediately to improve user experience and performance metrics.

All new functionalities operate seamlessly in the background, requiring no direct intervention from the user. Upon installing or upgrading to WP Rocket 3.16, these optimizations are automatically enabled, though customization options remain accessible for those who prefer manual control.”

Read the official announcement:

WP Rocket 3.16: Improving LCP and PageSpeed Score Automatically

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Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint: A Step-By-Step Guide

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Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint: A Step-By-Step Guide

This post was sponsored by DebugBear. The opinions expressed in this article are the sponsor’s own.

Keeping your website fast is important for user experience and SEO.

The Core Web Vitals initiative by Google provides a set of metrics to help you understand the performance of your website.

The three Core Web Vitals metrics are:

This post focuses on the recently introduced INP metric and what you can do to improve it.

How Is Interaction To Next Paint Measured?

INP measures how quickly your website responds to user interactions – for example, a click on a button. More specifically, INP measures the time in milliseconds between the user input and when the browser has finished processing the interaction and is ready to display any visual updates on the page.

Your website needs to complete this process in under 200 milliseconds to get a “Good” score. Values over half a second are considered “Poor”. A poor score in a Core Web Vitals metric can negatively impact your search engine rankings.

Google collects INP data from real visitors on your website as part of the Chrome User Experience Report (CrUX). This CrUX data is what ultimately impacts rankings.

Image created by DebugBear, May 2024

How To Identify & Fix Slow INP Times

The factors causing poor Interaction to Next Paint can often be complex and hard to figure out. Follow this step-by-step guide to understand slow interactions on your website and find potential optimizations.

1. How To Identify A Page With Slow INP Times

Different pages on your website will have different Core Web Vitals scores. So you need to identify a slow page and then investigate what’s causing it to be slow.

Using Google Search Console

One easy way to check your INP scores is using the Core Web Vitals section in Google Search Console, which reports data based on the Google CrUX data we’ve discussed before.

By default, page URLs are grouped into URL groups that cover many different pages. Be careful here – not all pages might have the problem that Google is reporting. Instead, click on each URL group to see if URL-specific data is available for some pages and then focus on those.

1716368164 358 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of Google Search Console, May 2024

Using A Real-User Monitoring (RUM) Service

Google won’t report Core Web Vitals data for every page on your website, and it only provides the raw measurements without any details to help you understand and fix the issues. To get that you can use a real-user monitoring tool like DebugBear.

Real-user monitoring works by installing an analytics snippet on your website that measures how fast your website is for your visitors. Once that’s set up you’ll have access to an Interaction to Next Paint dashboard like this:

1716368164 404 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of the DebugBear Interaction to Next Paint dashboard, May 2024

You can identify pages you want to optimize in the list, hover over the URL, and click the funnel icon to look at data for that specific page only.

1716368164 975 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideImage created by DebugBear, May 2024

2. Figure Out What Element Interactions Are Slow

Different visitors on the same page will have different experiences. A lot of that depends on how they interact with the page: if they click on a background image there’s no risk of the page suddenly freezing, but if they click on a button that starts some heavy processing then that’s more likely. And users in that second scenario will experience much higher INP.

To help with that, RUM data provides a breakdown of what page elements users interacted with and how big the interaction delays were.

1716368164 348 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of the DebugBear INP Elements view, May 2024

The screenshot above shows different INP interactions sorted by how frequent these user interactions are. To make optimizations as easy as possible you’ll want to focus on a slow interaction that affects many users.

In DebugBear, you can click on the page element to add it to your filters and continue your investigation.

3. Identify What INP Component Contributes The Most To Slow Interactions

INP delays can be broken down into three different components:

  • Input Delay: Background code that blocks the interaction from being processed.
  • Processing Time: The time spent directly handling the interaction.
  • Presentation Delay: Displaying the visual updates to the screen.

You should focus on which INP component is the biggest contributor to the slow INP time, and ensure you keep that in mind during your investigation.

1716368164 193 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of the DebugBear INP Components, May 2024

In this scenario, Processing Time is the biggest contributor to the slow INP time for the set of pages you’re looking at, but you need to dig deeper to understand why.

High processing time indicates that there is code intercepting the user interaction and running slow performing code. If instead you saw a high input delay, that suggests that there are background tasks blocking the interaction from being processed, for example due to third-party scripts.

4. Check Which Scripts Are Contributing To Slow INP

Sometimes browsers report specific scripts that are contributing to a slow interaction. Your website likely contains both first-party and third-party scripts, both of which can contribute to slow INP times.

A RUM tool like DebugBear can collect and surface this data. The main thing you want to look at is whether you mostly see your own website code or code from third parties.

1716368164 369 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of the INP Primary Script Domain Grouping in DebugBear, May 2024

Tip: When you see a script, or source code function marked as “N/A”, this can indicate that the script comes from a different origin and has additional security restrictions that prevent RUM tools from capturing more detailed information.

This now begins to tell a story: it appears that analytics/third-party scripts are the biggest contributors to the slow INP times.

5. Identify Why Those Scripts Are Running

At this point, you now have a strong suspicion that most of the INP delay, at least on the pages and elements you’re looking at, is due to third-party scripts. But how can you tell whether those are general tracking scripts or if they actually have a role in handling the interaction?

DebugBear offers a breakdown that helps see why the code is running, called the INP Primary Script Invoker breakdown. That’s a bit of a mouthful – multiple different scripts can be involved in slowing down an interaction, and here you just see the biggest contributor. The “Invoker” is just a value that the browser reports about what caused this code to run.

1716368165 263 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of the INP Primary Script Invoker Grouping in DebugBear, May 2024

The following invoker names are examples of page-wide event handlers:

  • onclick
  • onmousedown
  • onpointerup

You can see those a lot in the screenshot above, which tells you that the analytics script is tracking clicks anywhere on the page.

In contrast, if you saw invoker names like these that would indicate event handlers for a specific element on the page:

  • .load_more.onclick
  • #logo.onclick

6. Review Specific Page Views

A lot of the data you’ve seen so far is aggregated. It’s now time to look at the individual INP events, to form a definitive conclusion about what’s causing slow INP in this example.

Real user monitoring tools like DebugBear generally offer a way to review specific user experiences. For example, you can see what browser they used, how big their screen is, and what element led to the slowest interaction.

1716368165 545 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of a Page View in DebugBear Real User Monitoring, May 2024

As mentioned before, multiple scripts can contribute to overall slow INP. The INP Scripts section shows you the scripts that were run during the INP interaction:

1716368165 981 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of the DebugBear INP script breakdown, May 2024

You can review each of these scripts in more detail to understand why they run and what’s causing them to take longer to finish.

7. Use The DevTools Profiler For More Information

Real user monitoring tools have access to a lot of data, but for performance and security reasons they can access nowhere near all the available data. That’s why it’s a good idea to also use Chrome DevTools to measure your page performance.

To debug INP in DevTools you can measure how the browser processes one of the slow interactions you’ve identified before. DevTools then shows you exactly how the browser is spending its time handling the interaction.

1716368165 526 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of a performance profile in Chrome DevTools, May 2024

How You Might Resolve This Issue

In this example, you or your development team could resolve this issue by:

  • Working with the third-party script provider to optimize their script.
  • Removing the script if it is not essential to the website, or finding an alternative provider.
  • Adjusting how your own code interacts with the script

How To Investigate High Input Delay

In the previous example most of the INP time was spent running code in response to the interaction. But often the browser is already busy running other code when a user interaction happens. When investigating the INP components you’ll then see a high input delay value.

This can happen for various reasons, for example:

  • The user interacted with the website while it was still loading.
  • A scheduled task is running on the page, for example an ongoing animation.
  • The page is loading and rendering new content.

To understand what’s happening, you can review the invoker name and the INP scripts section of individual user experiences.

1716368165 86 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of the INP Component breakdown within DebugBear, May 2024

In this screenshot, you can see that a timer is running code that coincides with the start of a user interaction.

The script can be opened to reveal the exact code that is run:

1716368165 114 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of INP script details in DebugBear, May 2024

The source code shown in the previous screenshot comes from a third-party user tracking script that is running on the page.

At this stage, you and your development team can continue with the INP workflow presented earlier in this article. For example, debugging with browser DevTools or contacting the third-party provider for support.

How To Investigate High Presentation Delay

Presentation delay tends to be more difficult to debug than input delay or processing time. Often it’s caused by browser behavior rather than a specific script. But as before, you still start by identifying a specific page and a specific interaction.

You can see an example interaction with high presentation delay here:

1716368165 665 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of the an interaction with high presentation delay, May 2024

You see that this happens when the user enters text into a form field. In this example, many visitors pasted large amounts of text that the browser had to process.

Here the fix was to delay the processing, show a “Waiting…” message to the user, and then complete the processing later on. You can see how the INP score improves from May 3:

1716368165 845 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of an Interaction to Next Paint timeline in DebugBear, May 2024

Get The Data You Need To Improve Interaction To Next Paint

Setting up real user monitoring helps you understand how users experience your website and what you can do to improve it. Try DebugBear now by signing up for a free 14-day trial.

1716368165 494 Optimizing Interaction To Next Paint A Step By Step GuideScreenshot of the DebugBear Core Web Vitals dashboard, May 2024

Google’s CrUX data is aggregated over a 28-day period, which means that it’ll take a while before you notice a regression. With real-user monitoring you can see the impact of website changes right away and get alerted automatically when there’s a big change.

DebugBear monitors lab data, CrUX data, and real user data. That way you have all the data you need to optimize your Core Web Vitals in one place.

This article has been sponsored by DebugBear, and the views presented herein represent the sponsor’s perspective.

Ready to start optimizing your website? Sign up for DebugBear and get the data you need to deliver great user experiences.


Image Credits

Featured Image: Image by Redesign.co. Used with permission.

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