The E-Commerce Column

The Importance of Consumer Reviews within E-Commerce Sites

Social websites have become an essential part of every businesses marketing plan. Building social communities has proven to increase brand awareness and lower support cost while building the brands awareness through engaging conversation. However, depending on third party social platforms such as Facebook or Twitter as the “meeting place” for these conversations could end up leaving the business owner feeling out of control of their brands community. Because of limited access to customization, control, and analytics e-commerce businesses sites are starting to realize that building communities within their own site is the only option to build community.

When Hotcakes Commerce was starting out in development there were many days spent around a large conference table loading white boards up with ideas.  We started with the customer and put ourselves in their shoes…What do we want, as a customer, when we shop online? What do I look for on an e-commerce site besides the products I want to buy and how does this influence my purchasing? We all agreed on one thing – reviews from other consumers were huge. If there is an item that I want to buy and I can get it on two websites, one that offers reviews and one that does not, I will most likely be swayed into purchasing the item from the site with reviews. We discussed this as a group and tried hard to understand why we all felt this way and that is when it became clear – consumer reviews can help remove any doubt we may have about a product or help us in selecting the right product for our needs. According to a study done by Revoo, consumer reviews produce an average 18% uplift in sales.

Improving conversions and customer experience should be the main purpose of building social communities but we can’t forget the increased SEO benefits.   Websites that are being constantly updated with fresh content that is unique are going to see an increase in their rankings and reviews are a great way to accomplish this. Consumers searching for a products specific name and including the world “review” is fairly common and by offering reviews on your site will increase the chances of consumers ending up on your site and inevitably making a purchase.

It’s completely normal for a business to fear bad reviews and the damage they may cause to their business but the truth is, bad reviews are good for business too. Of course too many bad reviews are not a good thing but a balanced mix of good and bad reviews will increase a consumers trust in a brand and will give the consumer an idea of what to expect of a product. Reevoo found that people that seek out and read bad reviews convert better, as the very fact that they are paying such close attention means they are more likely to be in purchase mode. 

68% of consumers trust reviews more when they see both good and bad scores, while 30% suspect censorship or faked reviews when they don’t see any negative opinions on the page

Hotcakes Social offers businesses the opportunity to build social communities with their consumers that include reviews and so much more.  We know that when businesses add Hotcakes Social to their package their business will thrive.   If you have any questions about Hotcakes Social leave us a message in our community section. Also if you will be attending IRCE in Chicago stop by booth 145 & 147 for a demo of our products unique features.  

About the Author

Will StrohlWill Strohl

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