One of the barriers to online shopping had been the inability to see and touch the product before making the decision to buy. But brands and marketplaces like Amazon came up with a solution to help shoppers feel confident in their choices—adding peer-generated product reviews to product pages. Today, 88% of consumers don’t make a purchase, online or off, without checking star ratings or reading user-generated reviews. In fact, 90% say that reviews are the most influential factor in making purchase decisions. As e-commerce evolves, consumers are growing more sophisticated and demanding a more engaging experience that extends beyond the product page.
The Impact of Reviews
Reviews give consumers they confidence they need to buy. In fact, when asked to choose between two equivalent products, consumers overwhelmingly chose the one with more positive reviews. While that’s not surprising, researchers also found that 81% of consumers would pay more for products that were positively reviewed by their peers, indicating that reviews drove a perception of higher quality.
Having Their Say
Consumers feel empowered when they share their experiences with brands. Seventy-one percent of all consumers have submitted product reviews and 69% have rated products. Almost 40% of consumers have asked a question about a product either on a brand website or on social media and 28% have answered other consumers’ questions. This type of ongoing engagement allows marketers to gain valuable insight into consumer sentiment, identify issues with their products, generate awareness about other products, and provide more timely customer service.
Why Consumers Don’t Contribute…and What Brands Can Do About It
Since user-generated content is so powerful, how can marketers encourage more positive reviews? Simple: ask, incentivize, and make it easy. One third of consumers who don’t review products said there was no incentive to do so and 28% said it was too time consuming. Instead of making reviews a chore, turn the request into a fun social media campaign that allows buyers to show off their purchase or product results, and share their experience with the world. Follow purchases with a personalized email asking about their experience, incentivize reviews with loyalty points or discounts on their next purchase. There are endless ways to continue the conversation with consumers after the purchase has been made.
The Amazon Effect - How To Market A Product On Amazon
Researchers found that more consumers now start searches on Amazon than Google or other search engines; in fact, 55% of Americans search Amazon first, and reviews are a big part of the draw. Reviews inspire confidence in your brand and, most importantly, help drive your Amazon search results. How can you boost your reviews on Amazon? Amazon developed its own influencer program, Amazon Vine, that offers a hand-picked group of influencers free products in exchange for honest and unbiased reviews. The Amazon Vine program is just one aspect of Amazon Premium Services that enables vendors to better leverage their Amazon listings. As experts in Amazon marketing strategies, Women’s Marketing can help your brand evaluate and implement your Amazon Marketing Services, for most effective brand impact.
Sources: TurnTo Hearing The Voice of the Consumer 2017, Business Insider The Number of Amazon Prime Members has Reportedly Doubled in the Past Two Years 2017, Retail Dive User-Generated Content’s Influence on Purchase Decisions Grows 2017, BloomReach Amazon Study 2016