Bazaarvoice Shopper Experience Index shows surging importance of UGC
Consumer-driven content is becoming ever more important as a key part of the shopping journey and the latest international Shopper Experience Index report shows that “purchase influence has shifted from business-to-consumer, to consumer-to-consumer”.
The research was conducted among more than 7,000 people globally and reinforces the importance of shopper-driven content over brand-created content.
For instance, 74% of people in the UK find user-generated content (UGC) important to them and their purchase decisions. Globally, 86% of shoppers (or slightly higher at 87% in the UK) read shopper reviews when browsing or buying.
The study also found rising social commerce adoption with 51% of Britons now buying via social, and 41% doing it once or twice a month. That’s a massive rise from 32% only last year. And globally, 58% said they would be more likely to buy if they could read customer reviews directly on the social post.
Worldwide, 53% of shoppers say UGC makes them more confident in their purchase decision.
And this extends to their expectations of what brands present them with on their websites. Some 45% of UK shoppers want brands to use a mix of both professional photography and UGC when showcasing products, with 70% saying UGC on a product page increases the likelihood of buying a product. In fact, half said they would still buy a product even if there were no professional product photos on the product page.
This is being embraced by some companies with Andrew Longley, Head of Digital at Le Col, saying in the report: “Our reviews provide social proof to customers who are discovering the brand for the first time. It gives them confidence that the products are the highest quality and we believe reviews are as important to new customers as our own product claims.”
“What used to be business-to-consumer marketing, is now becoming consumer-to-business, and in some sectors, already morphing into consumer-to-consumer as consumers value and trust what other shoppers say about a brand and its products more than branded content. Brands need to rethink their paid media and content strategies and capitalise on influential peer-to-peer conversations to inform, inspire, and convert,” said Zarina Lam Stanford, CMO at Bazaarvoice. “Unfiltered user-generated content elevates authenticity, which in turn drives trust.”
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