Amazon is known for its convenience, selection and competitive prices, but its trove of user-generated reviews is also a valuable asset. Other ecommerce sites should take heed.
So it shouldn’t be surprising that a February 2018 Salsify survey found that over half (51%) of US digital buyers trust Amazon the most for useful product information. What might be surprising is how highly Amazon ranked compared with Google (27%), the brand itself (16%) or a retailer (5%). Brands don’t always have an ecommerce or reviewing component on their sites, but many online retailers, like Zappos.com, have fostered a robust culture of online reviewing.
Reviews don’t make or break all product categories equally. Salsify also discovered that positive reviews were most important to buyers of electronics (74%) and clothing (66%), while for household staples they ranked fourth (45%). Price mattered most for things like batteries and paper towels. Additionally, 62% of respondents said they read five or more reviews for a consumer electronics purchase, yet fewer did so for apparel (42%).
Online reviews can even have more sway than advice from someone you know. In "The eMarketer Ecommerce Insights Report," conducted in February 2018 by Bizrate Insights, 64.6% of US internet users thought online product reviews were mostly or very reliable.