All things are possible via the internet, including shopping for groceries and researching our next car purchase. The internet was once a platform for advertising your business. However, it is evolving into a forum where consumers can evaluate products and services using feedback and impressions from others.
Although it is easy to overlook the importance of customer feedback, objective data reveals more about how customers use reviews and what impact they have on businesses. Statistic analysis can be used to determine how customers behave prior to and after purchasing products or services. This information can be used to help plan for business improvement. We did some research and found these statistics to prove that online reviews are giving power to people.
Who Reads Online Reviews?
According to statistics, the majority of online shoppers use reviews to decide what products and services they want to buy. Customers read seven reviews per year before deciding whether to trust a business. This is an increase of six reviews in 2016. With more than 90% of customers using online reviews to research local and national businesses, it’s easy to ask: Who isn’t reading them?
According to Fan & Fuel (2016), 94% of online customers read reviews before making any purchasing decisions. For product-specific information, Spiegel Research Centre (2017) shows that 95% of shoppers read reviews before making a purchase.
BrightLocal (2017) studies indicate that 97% of consumers use reviews to search for local services. In particular, 60% of consumers read reviews about restaurants and cafes, 40% about B&Bs, and 33% about medical services.
Small Business Trends (2017) shows 83% of job seekers use reviews to support their decisions on which companies to apply to. 84% of patients also use online reviews to assess their doctors before they check-in.
Customers are not satisfied with just being informed about the availability of a product/service; they want to be able to learn from their own experiences. Public services, retail, hospitality, and healthcare have all benefited from customer reviews in order to improve their marketing strategies. Overeview.io sites are a great way to help businesses grow.
Not only can reviews influence consumer decision-making, but they also help to build a company’s reputation. Customer reviews have the ability to build trust and encourage customers to interact with the company. Businesses will see increased profits if they have better customer interaction.
In the U.S., 68% of online shoppers are more likely to engage with businesses that have positive reviews (BrightLocal 2017), and 93% determine whether a business has a good reputation (or not) based upon the available reviews. In 2016, Fan & Fuel reported that 92% of consumers hesitated to make a purchase if there were no customer reviews, and a full 97% say customer reviews factor into their buying decisions.
If you find that impressive, keep reading. Products with reviews are 270% more likely to be bought than a product without, according to Speigel Research Centre (2017). This likelihood rises to 380% for a product with a higher price.
Customers and businesses have the opportunity to establish a rapport with each other through reviews. Gallup Research shows that customers and businesses can build a relationship with one another by reviewing each other. Customers who are more engaged with their favorite electronics businesses spend 29% less per shopping trip. Gallup also shows that hotel guests who are more engaged with their hotel will spend 46% less per year than those who don’t have a relationship with them. B2B companies achieve 63% less customer attrition and 55% more wallet share. They also have 50% higher productivity.
After-sales customer service establishes trust and, as reported by BrightLocal, positive reviews make 73% of consumers trust a local business more. Online reviews are trusted by 85% of consumers more than personal recommendations. Customer engagement is a growing and established method that reviews are gaining popularity.
The Negative Review
Research shows that customers are more likely to leave negative reviews than positive ones. Negative reviews can have a significant, sometimes even negative effect on businesses.
Fan & Fuel (2016) found that 35% of surveyed participants say that just one negative review can make them decide not to make a purchase. And Review Trackers (2018) states 94% of consumers have reportedly avoided a business based on negative reviews. The consensus from Small Business Trends (2017) is even bleaker, stating that one negative review has the potential to lose 22% of potential customers, three negative reviews will lose 59%, and four negative reviews could turn away 70% of your potential customers.
Negative reviews most often affect the industries of hotels, doctors’ offices, hospitals, and hair salons. 81% of women will avoid visiting these establishments if they have a bad review about cleanliness.
It is not surprising that negative reviews can increase e-commerce sales, despite all the negative news. Small Business Trends reports that it can even increase awareness of the product. When a product has a star rating of 4.0 to4.7, the likelihood that a buyer will make a purchase is highest. As the rating approaches 5.0, it starts to drop. This trend shows that even a perfect review history can be far from perfect.
A mix of positive and bad reviews is important in retail because it shows potential customers that reviews are genuine. According to Speigel Research Centre’s 2017 Power Reviews Research, more than 80% of shoppers specifically seek out negative reviews, believing they show the company’s credibility; if a business has nothing but excellent reviews, it tends to lead to suspicion.
Important to Respond To Customer Reviews
If reviews are important, but negative reviews can drive customers away, what should a business do?
Review Trackers (2018) shows 53% of customers expect businesses to respond to their online review within seven days and Marketing Bitz (2018) found that 33% of Yelp reviewers will upgrade their review if a business responds to their complaint within 24 hours. It is important to respond to negative reviews. According to the Review Trackers survey, 45% said they are more likely to return to a business that responds to negative reviews.
This shows customers how much they value companies that listen to and respond to negative reviews. Companies can respond to negative reviews by contextualizing the issue, minimizing the negative impact, and showing that they value customers. The negative review is a great opportunity to address customer complaints and show potential customers that your company values its customers.
Revain has you covered
However, a review can also make a company vulnerable. Fake reviews or spam can cause a company to lose its good reputation. Revain’s platform for reviewing can be a great help.
Revain uses an AI system that was developed internally by a team of data scientists. This ensures that all reviews are constructive and genuine. They are transparent and permanent, thanks to blockchain. Their AI is built from a continuous feed of big data derived from customer reviews. The system contains the elements of a perfect review, namely, useful to the reader. It also includes low-quality reviews such as extreme language, disgust, flattery, or other unconstructive comments. Revain feeds both positive and negative aspects to the AI system. This allows Revain to train the system how best to distinguish between “useful” reviews and “unproductive”. Revain’s team continuously validates the AI’s ability to distinguish between high- and low-quality reviews and retrains it when necessary.
Customers can influence the success of companies by writing reviews. Companies that are open to listening to customers and addressing their expectations will be successful. The Revain review platform uses blockchain technology to provide a transparent and immutable customer review system that customers can trust. Companies cannot manipulate it. Businesses can rest assured that only honest, high-quality reviews will be used to assess their online reputation.
People are speaking and listening. Online reviews are potentially the most powerful and mutually beneficial tools a business can use. How important is the online review to your business, considering that everyone reads reviews and makes decisions based on them.