One of the downsides of running any business is that anyone can now review it – legitimately or otherwise – via social media.
However, for brands or CMOs worried about too many one or star reviews comes some good news with a new study out of the US that found even negative reviews can be good for starting a conversation around a brand or product.
The study by Spiegel Research Center and PowerReviews analysed “millions of customer experiences” from US online retailers. You can download a copy of the report here.
The top five takeouts from the report are in the graphic below:
It found that even one-star reviews were helpful because it saw conversation rates rise by as much as 270 per cent, with higher-priced items benefitting much more from the conversation.
Interestingly, PowerReviews actually found that 82 per cent of customers actually seek out bad reviews and that means they’ll spend four times more on a site reading the reviews.
Bad reviews also help keep star ratings down and the study found people are more likely to believe a lower score than a brand with five stars, as that would be deemed as “too good to be true”.
The study also found that although price was often the determining factor to make the final purchase decision, reviews helped potential customers also determine things like a product’s safety, how much it reflects a consumer’s identity, or whether it is a recently introduced product or brand.
It also found that people who identified themselves in a customer review and commented held more weight than those who did so anonymously.