How Much Trust Do Consumers Put Into Online Reviews?
Myles Anderson of BrightLocal recently released the 2013 Local Consumer Review Survey at SearchEngineLand. What is eye-catching within the study is that there are precise and unquestionable results that we can easily see.
What we learned provides us four distinct takeaways.
- More people are trusting online reviews as much as personal recommendations. A full 79 percent (up from 72 percent just a year ago!) state that genuine online reviews (emphasis on genuine) carry the same impact or more than a recommendation from someone they know.
- The trust in online reviews is growing. A stunning 72 percent are of the opinion that genuine, positive customer reviews will make them trust a business more. This is up from 58 percent in 2012! It’s very apparent that buyers are seeking and taking note more than before and are putting their trust in reviews. At the same time, only some 12 percent of consumers said they pay no attention of online reviews, down from 17 percent in 2012.
- People are reading fewer reviews before they are making buying decisions. Now a full 67 percent of consumers read 6 reviews or less, up from 52 percent in 2012. On the whole far fewer consumers are reading more than 7 reviews – 22 percent now vs. 35 percent in 2012.
- It’s more critical than ever to manage your online reputation. Since consumers are reading fewer reviews, and basing their buying decisions on them more, it’s important to ensure you are monitoring your online reputation very carefully. Because the most recent reviews are impacting the buying decisions the most, you’ll need to keep a watchful eye for anything appearing that is negative and possibly damaging. Institute a policy for dealing openly with negative reviews, and a complimentary system for generating new, positive reviews that drive those negative reviews further down the page and not as findable. Make sure to make these genuine, however, as people are ever more savvy with regards to spotting fake and corporate-generated “reviews”.
Use this information!
Information such as this is pure gold, and clearly actionable. Kudos to Myles Anderson and the people at BrightLocal for this very beneficial and eye-opening study.
Are you ready to implement online reviews for your business? Extreme Marketing Concepts can help you get started and we can manage it for you. Contact us today at 813-863-1452.