Study: 79% of Consumers Trust Online Reviews
The 2013 Local Consumer Review Survey by Myles Anderson of BrightLocal was newly published on SearchEngineLand. There are several obvious and indisputable results that we can run with.
What we learned gives us four distinct takeaways.
- Far more people are stating that they trust online reviews as much or more versus personal recommendations. A full 79 percent (up from 72 percent only a year ago!) answered by saying online reviews carry the same significance if not more than a recommendation from people they know or trust.
- Trust in online reviews is skyrocketing! A whopping 72 percent now state that positive customer reviews make them trust a company more. This is up from 58 percent in 2012! It’s abundantly clear that buyers take more notice than ever before and are trusting them more. Only 12 percent of consumers said they pay no notice of any online reviews (down from 17 percent in 2012).
- Also, people are viewing far fewer reviews before they generate their buying decisions. Notably, 67 percent of consumers read 6 reviews or less, up from 52 percent in 2012. People are also reading less than 7 reviews – 22 percent now vs. 35 percent in 2012.
- It’s more important than ever before to manage your online reputation and then MARKET that good reputation as a key feature of your business. Since consumers are reading fewer reviews, and basing their buying decisions on them more, it’s vital to ensure you are monitoring your online reputation very carefully.
- Because the most recent reviews are affecting 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 suitable system for generating new, positive reviews that drive those negative reviews further down the page and not as findable. Be sure to make these genuine, however, as people are ever more savvy when it comes to spotting fake and corporate-generated “reviews”.
Take this and run with it!
This is the type of information that can make a major difference, both positively and negatively, in your business. Many thanks to Myles Anderson and the people at BrightLocal for this well-timed and useful study.
To get a clear understanding on how to best handle your online reputation click this link to download our free report; “Why Ignoring Your Online Reputation Can Be Harmful To Your Local Business’ Health”