A simple submission URL (ssURL) quickly takes customers to a review submission form without having them go through a lengthy sign-in process.

Refer to the following sections to learn more about ssURLs and the steps necessary to create a simple submission URL:

Why are ssURLs important?

Through Bazaarvoice’s simple submission technology, you can pre-authenticate contributors so they aren’t required to sign in before submitting a review.

Research shows that when customers have to locate a product page, open the submission form, and then sign in, 75% will abandon the process. Using ssURLs removes that barrier, potentially increasing review volume and the effectiveness of email campaigns.

How do ssURLs work?

A contributor either selects a review submission link on your website or selects the Write a review link embedded within a review request (formerly post-interaction email or PIE).

The ssURL behind the link loads a submission container page before loading the submission form. Using the parameters from the ssURL, the container page determines:

  • Submission type (single product or generic product picker)
  • Submission location
  • User authentication (if necessary)
  • Submission campaign ID
  • Contributor/content badges (if necessary)
Note: The product picker enables your customers to select the product or products they want to review. Instead of opening a review submission form for a specific product, the ssURL displays a screen where the contributor can select which product to review.

If the contributor is pre-authenticated by Bazaarvoice, they should not have to go through a sign-in process to write a review. However, a pre-authenticated link does not sign users in to your site for functions such as accessing a personal account page. They will still need to sign in for those functions.

Where to use ssURLs

You can use ssURLs in any web media, such as an email, splash page, or banner. You can associate ssURLs with objects like buttons and images, or you can display an ssURL as a text link.

An ssURL can open a submission form that displays a product picker page for all products in your product catalog or for all products in a specific category or product family.

Finally, if you use a third-party service to drive review volume, ensure that every campaign uses ssURLs so collected content will be included in the Bazaarvoice network.

Create an ssURL

In most cases, creating an ssURL requires minimal technical knowledge. Complete the following steps to create an ssURL that takes your contributor to a single-product submission form.

Note: Contact Bazaarvoice Support to configure an ssURL link for generic review submission (product picker).

Step 1: Check for simple submission readiness

Your PRR implementation must be simple submission compatible. Contact Bazaarvoice Support to request that implementation team perform a quick test on your integration code to check for simple submission URL readiness.

The following authentication process and integration sections outline the steps necessary to support simple submission URLs.

Step 2: Determine if your site uses hosted or site authentication

Site authentication—The ssURL can pre-authenticate a contributor when it includes a special parameter and a user token.

Hosted authentication—Bazaarvoice authenticates a contributor through email after submission, so you do not need to include an authentication parameter in the ssURL. The contributor can select an ssURL and successfully submit content without signing in. This is the recommended method.

Step 3: Create a submission container page

The Bazaarvoice Design Services team will create the actual submission form and style it similar to your product page. It’s your responsibility however to create a submission container page for this submission form to live in.

Follow these steps to create a submission container page to support a simple submission form:

  1. Determine the sign-in redirection logic
  2. Implement your submission container page
  3. Generate the user authentication string (UAS)

Additional information

The following behaviors demonstrate incorrect sign-in redirection logic:

  • Contributors are redirected to their profile pages after selecting the Write a review link and signing into the site.
  • Contributors selecting pre-authenticated Write a review links are prompted to sign in to their accounts.
  • Contributors can successfully select Write a review while signed in, but the submission form won’t load.

Step 4: Construct the ssURL base structure

How you construct your ssURL depends on two factors:

  • Are you using a single-product submission form or a product picker (aka generic review submission)
  • Are you using hosted or site authentication?

This is the structure pattern for ssURL links for the various user-generated content displays types:

Ratings & Reviews: [reviews.client.com]

http://[TODO: DOMAIN Goes Here]/[TODO: DISPLAY_CODE Goes Here]/[TODO: PRODUCT_ID Goes Here]/submission.htm?user=[TODO: USER_AUTHENTICATION_STRING Goes Here]&return=[TODO: RETURN_URL Goes Here]&campaignid=[TODO: CAMPAIGN_ID Goes Here]

Questions: [answers.client.com]

http://[TODO: DOMAIN Goes Here]/answers/[TODO: DISPLAY_CODE Goes Here]/[TODO: product | category][TODO: PRODUCT_ID/CATEGORY_ID Goes Here]/askquestion.htm?user=[TODO: USER_AUTHENTICATION_STRING Goes Here]&return=[TODO: RETURN_URL Goes Here]&return=[TODO: RETURN_URL Goes Here]&campaignid=[TODO: CAMPAIGN_ID Goes Here]

Answers: [answers.client.com]

http://[TODO: DOMAIN Goes Here]/answers/[TODO: DISPLAY_CODE Goes Here]/[TODO: product | category]/question/[TODO: QUESTION ID GoesHere][TODO: PRODUCT ID Goes Here]/answerquestion.htm?user=[TODO: USER_AUTHENTICATION_STRING Goes Here]&return=[TODO: RETURN_URL Goes Here]&return=[TODO: RETURN_URL Goes Here]&campaignid=[TODO: CAMPAIGN_ID Goes Here] 
Attribute Description
DOMAIN The domain is the CNAME DNS entry created during implementation. Normally, this has the structure product.currentdomain.com (product can be reviews or answers). It will look something like client.ugc.bazaarvoice.com. Contact Bazaarvoice Support to request this value from the Bazaarvoice implementation team.
DISPLAY_CODE This value is specific to your Bazaarvoice implementation. It will be the same value that's used to integrate Bazaarvoice content into your PDPs. Contact Bazaarvoice Support to request this value from the Bazaarvoice implementation team.
PRODUCT ID | CATEGORY ID Product ID of the product you want contributors to review. Category ID of the category the product belongs to.
USER_AUTHENTICATION_STRING Provide Bazaarvoice with a user authentication string (UAS). This string enables Bazaarvoice to verify that content comes from a trusted source.
RETURN_URL (Optional) URL the user will be directed to after a review has been submitted.
CAMPAIGN_ID Name or ID for your campaign. It's used to generate a unique submission link for your campaign. Bazaarvoice segments report data by campaign so you can gauge the effectiveness of an email campaign.

Step 5: Add additional parameters to customize the ssURL behavior

When a contributor clicks a “Write a review” link within an email, they’re redirected to a Bazaarvoice URL.

Bazaarvoice adds the various bvpage parameters to the ssURL and then redirects the contributor to your submission container page.

For example, if a submission page’s URL is http://www.domain.com/submit.html. When Bazaarvoice redirects to this page to load the submission form, query string parameters are added to make the final URL look something like the following but longer. This one is shortened for clarity:

http://www.domain.com/submit.html?bvdisplaycode=1234&bvproductid=123456&bvpage=http%3A%2F%2Fh3 0441.www.domain.com%2F8845%2F123456%2Faction.htm%3Fformat%3Dembedded%26action%3DAddRev iew%26user%3D USERID &bvcontenttype=REVIEW_SUBMISSION&bvauthenticateuser=true
Parameter Description Recommendation
campaignid String used to identify the campaign source of submitted content. Example: 2019_Jan_SplashPage Recommended for tracking and report segmentation.
return Absolute URL the Cancel and Return buttons use to point to the Thank You page after successful submission. Example: http%3A%2F%2Fwww.client.com%2F If omitted from the subject-specific ssURL, no Cancel or Return buttons will appear. If omitted from the generic ssURL, Cancel and Return buttons will default to using the client's homepage URL.
user Encoded user authentication string Strongly recommended for pre-authenticating contributors, especially for ssURLs in email campaigns.
submissionurl URL of the container page you want to direct the contributor to Optional. This is helpful if you need to override the Bazaarvoice configured destination.

Common questions

Expand the following dropdowns for answers to common questions about ssURLs:

Check the following:

  • Verify that your website follows the Sign-in redirection logic and checks for bvauthenticateuser
  • Make sure you included the user authentication string (UAS) in your ssURL. The UAS must be formatted correctly with the required parameters included.
  • Verify the maxage setting in your user authentication string. Remember, if a maxage is not specified in your encoded user authentication string, the default maxage is set to “1” meaning that pre-authentication will only be valid for one day in that ssURL.
  • Check for typos in your UAS.
  • Verify that your ssURL is valid. Then check to make sure it's not loading an invalid page on your site.
  • Maybe you have recently moved the submission container page on your site. The submission container page is a URL on your site where the Bazaarvoice submission form loads. Please contact Bazaarvoice Support and open a support case specifiying the new URL so we can update our configuration.
  • Decode the user authentication string. Check that the value in the userid parameter is accurate. Remember, user IDs come from your organization and must be unique.
  • Make sure you are not using someone else’s useridby checking transaction data and resources on your side.