How Online Product Reviews Improve Profits

 In Ecommerce

Online product reviews are becoming more relied on by online retailers to help close the sale. But why are these reviews so effective, and can they really help you attract more customers and sales? We’ll dig in to provide the answers you need.

Improve Conversions by as Much as 58%

Perhaps one of the most convincing reasons to add online product reviews to your online store’s product pages is this: conversion rate increase. According to a study that was conducted by Bazaarvoice, which gathered data from over 57 million reviews and 35 billion product page views, when visitors interact, conversion rates increase by as much as 58%.

The study also yielded some other interesting findings:

  • One review added to a product page can improve conversions by 10%.
  • 30 reviews added to a product page can improve conversion by 25%.
  • When over 100 reviews are added, sales lift increases by 37%.
  • Average order value increases to 3% from product reviews.

Online Product Reviews Help SEO

Another powerful reason to consider adding verified product reviews to your online store is because of the SEO benefits that they offer. According to Google, fresh, unique content is one of the key metrics and integers utilized by their algorithms for ranking pages.

Basically, the more unique content that you have that is directly relevant to your store’s offerings, the likelier you are to rank for any given page. In this case, it can result in getting your product pages or landing pages that host these reviews ranked higher in the search engine results.

In the aforementioned Bizaarvoice study, it was noted that product pages that hosted unique review content usually experienced a 15%-25% increase in search traffic as a direct result. Since the average consumer review is between 100-200 words, imagine if you had 20 reviews that were adding 4,000 or more words of unique content to your landing page. How could this help you outrank a competitor that has far less content? In addition, the reviews continuously serve to add fresh, new content, thus helping you in an ongoing manner, too.

Influence Buying Decisions

Consumers shopping online do not have that much to go on. For example, they are unable to touch the products or see them in three dimensions. They instead can only rely on the pictures that you provide, any other media like video, and by what product reviews exist, if any. A survey that was conducted by Dimensional Research for ZenDesk found that when a positive product review was present, 90% of consumers were influenced by it.

REVIEWS CHART

What’s more, consumers stop and take the time to actually read reviews before they make that purchasing decision, explains a Search Engine Land article. About 85% of consumers read as many as 10 online reviews just to determine whether or not they can trust a business. While this particular study focused on local businesses, the same can be said for online businesses and online reviews – where buying decisions are warranted out of consumer trust for the products or services being offered.

REVIEWS CHART 2

But what power does an online review have in the mind of the beholder? And is this influence as powerful as, say, a personal recommendation from a trusted friend or family member? According to the chart we’ve included below, yes, it is. About 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as they trust personal recommendations.

REVIEWS CHART 3

Most Reviews Are Accurate

One might ask, what about fake reviews or altered ones or even paid ones (something that Amazon has been stamping out as they aim to clean up the clutter from their marketplace). Does the dissemination of these fake reviews take away from the candor and efficacy of the legitimate ones?

According to a comScore study, you don’t have to worry about that. That’s because they’ve determined that 97% of people who made a purchase online that was based upon a review they read later found that review to be entirely accurate in influencing their purchasing decision.

Improve Consumer Confidence

While consumers are eager to purchase products from brands that they know and love, they don’t place as much clout in the product descriptions offered by the manufacturers as they do in what other consumers say, namely those who have purchased the products, explains eMarketer.

In fact, a BrightLocal poll corroborates this with a recent 2015 study that found that two-thirds of online users place more trust in a business that has positive online reviews. And eConsultancy says that an average sales uplift of 18% is realized from positive online reviews of a business or a product.

The Power of Social Proof

One powerful aspect of online product reviews is that they can be shared via social media, where the most recent social media ecommerce statistics show that they can derive a healthy referral revenue. With think tanks like Power Reviews saying that over 70% of Americans look at product reviews before making a buying decision, social proof is indeed in the conversion pudding. Take a look at this chart below for even more clarity.

social proof chart

How Reviews Boost Profits

Make sure you come back soon – we’ll be writing a follow-up piece that will show you the necessary steps that you need to take to get product reviews into your online store, and how you can encourage customers to leave theirs, so you can attract more traffic and conversions.

In the meanwhile, take a look at this infographic, which culls data from many of the sources that have been provided for you in this write-up. Use the information it provides to better understand how powerful online product reviews are, and why you should leverage this power with your online store.

infographic5b

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