The power of recommendations

Written on 25 July, 2012 by Uyen Vu
Categories: Marketing | Tags: content, search engine optimisation, seo, social media

If you operate an online business, you can’t ignore the power of recommendation. Ratings and reviews are strong catalysts for conversions, with recent figures by Econsultancy highlighting that 61 per cent of consumers read comments by fellow customers before making a purchasing decision. But it’s not just your bottom line that benefits from incorporating recommendations throughout your website. Ratings and reviews are great for SEO and can seriously drive customer engagement. Here are the top three reasons for jumping on the bandwagon.

Recommended reading

In the offline world, customers can ask sales staff and friends for opinions about a purchase or service. In the online world, this can get a little trickier. That’s why online customers look to fellow online shoppers to provide a critical stamp of approval before committing to a transaction. Customer rating and reviews play a key role in persuading customers to shop – 63 per cent of shoppers were more likely to trust a site that implemented recommendations according to research by iPerceptions. Credibility is key on the web, and consumer reviews help assure this – eMarketer showed that customers trust peer reviews nearly 12 times more than descriptions provided by manufacturers. What about bad reviews, though? Surprisingly, these can also vouch for the credibility of your website, with a mix of positive and negative reviews improving consumer trust in the opinions provided.

User-generated content boosts SEO

SEO best practice is about the production of fresh, unique content, and customer ratings and reviews are an excellent way to generate this. E-commerce sites that implement user-generated content also provide dramatic SEO advantages over websites that rely on standard descriptions provided by the manufacturer. This is because search engines recognise sites that embrace SEO content as more useful to users – a factor that increases the chances of achieving a higher ranking in SERPs. It’s also worth noting that many customers are likely to be searching for the name of the product along with the terms “rating” or “review”. If you host reviews on your site, you’re more likely to attract this traffic.

Customer engagement

Ratings and reviews are also a powerful source of customer engagement and can help create a community around your brand. Engaged customers enjoy a higher level of brand awareness and are more likely to grow your business through social sharing and word-of-mouth marketing. How are you embracing ratings and reviews? If you would like to learn more about SEO and how to improve your ratings and reviews why not contact us today on 1800 800 099?