A tour on Ratings & Reviews: remarkable effects on online shopping behavior

A tour on Ratings & Reviews: remarkable effects on online shopping behavior

Many recent research reports confirm the powerful effect of customer ratings & reviews on traffic, sales and conversion in e-commerce. Let’s zoom in on some remarkable insights about the effect on customer’s shopping behavior and brand loyalty.

Instead of looking at all data available on the impact of ratings & reviews, SiteLucent selected the following eye-catching insights from recent reports:

  1. Is more always better? How does the amount of reviews per product affect shopping behavior?
  2. A negative review can have positive effects! How do negative reviews affect shopping behavior?
  3. 33% of consumers will switch brands because of ratings & reviews.

1. The amount of reviews

The effect of the amount of customer reviews can be viewed from different angles:

  • How many reviews will a customer read when assessing a product or business online?

According to a BrightLocal survey, consumers read an average of 10 reviews (70% read 4 or more reviews, with 20% looking at more than 11). While consumers may expect a high number of reviews before feeling able to trust a business or product, it’s unlikely many consumers have the time to read hundreds of peers’ experiences before making a decision.

  •  From 0 reviews to 1 or more: 65% more conversion!

According to PowerReviews, the conversion rate for a product that receives its first review increases by 65%, on average. And this boost in conversion will on average double Sales.

  •  The number of reviews that you have doesn't tell the whole story.

Research shows that consumers care about two other factors: the recency of your reviews, and your overall star rating.

2. Negative reviews can have positive effects  

Negative reviews can have a positive effect on conversion rates and brand loyalty. According to Power Reviews, “it all boils down to keeping things honest and open with your customers. Having negative reviews on your site shows customers you aren’t afraid of them understanding your product in its entirety or of them seeing the good, the bad and the ugly of other customers’ experience with your brand.”

A recent analysis of PowerReviews found that on average, negative reviews are more “helpful” to customers than other ratings. If brands address negative reviews in an emphatic and customer centric way, they can have a positive effect on the customer’s image of the brand.

3. One in three consumers switch brands because of reviews

For a lot of brands, it is a hell of a job to monitor all reviews for all products on all retailer websites and market places. Not being able to address all (negative) reviews will have negative effect on conversion rates. According to survey The Rating Economy, consumer ratings are seen as third most important factor in purchasing decisions, after product features and price. Being able to directly compare products between different providers is making customers more likely to switch brands. One in three participants in the survey (of approximately 6.400 in 23 countries) stated that they had switched to a different brand due to the product having a better rating. 

These insights prove again that ratings & reviews have a profound impact on customer’s shopping behavior and brand loyalty. It is essential for brands to monitor this customer feedback continuously and to act on it in a customer centric way.

Need help in continuously monitoring all of your products on all of your online retail channels? Want to pinpoint your products with 0 or negative reviews and zoom in on specific products (SKU’s) to read the review texts? Let us know!