User-generated content (UGC) is increasingly becoming an integral part of the online shopping experience. It provides invaluable insights for both shoppers and retailers, influencing purchase decisions and improving product offerings. In this article, we’ll explore various types of UGC and offer strategies for encouraging your customers to contribute quality content to your online store.
Generally, there are four main types of user-generated content found in online stores:
Let’s delve into each type in more detail.
It’s common practice for online stores to reach out to customers post-purchase to solicit their thoughts on the product—these are product reviews. It’s essential to differentiate between ratings, which are usually star-based scores, and reviews, which consist of textual comments.
Collecting a high volume of customer feedback can be challenging but is crucial for both popular and niche products. Top-tier online stores manage to achieve a 20% response rate for ratings and a 7% rate for reviews.
Brands like Kid Interiør, Jernia, and Blivakker.no in Norway stand out for their high response rates. The key is to make the review process as simple as possible. Offering incentives like gift cards or discounts is generally discouraged, as this practice violates Google’s guidelines and may also run afoul of government consumer protection agencies.
Service reviews allow customers to evaluate their overall shopping experience, including aspects like delivery time, customer service, and product quality. These reviews are useful across all brands and categories.
Companies like Trustpilot have pioneered the collection of service reviews. However, a more user-friendly interface can boost response rates, with top platforms achieving around 7% for reviews and over 20% for ratings.
Social media platforms are fertile ground for user-generated content. While it’s not a new phenomenon, only recently have online stores started incorporating this content type into their websites. This approach is especially effective for visually-oriented products such as clothing, shoes, and jewelry. Brands like Hemtex, owned by KID Interiør, excel in leveraging social media content.
FAQs are the final type of UGC that can enhance the online shopping experience. Having a section that answers commonly asked questions not only facilitates the buying process but also alleviates the burden on customer service. This feature is particularly beneficial for stores selling complex items, like electronics.
Not all types of UGC will be suitable for every brand. However, understanding your options can inform a more targeted strategy for incorporating UGC.
One exemplary company in this arena is Elektroimportøren, which employs Lipscore to accumulate ratings and reviews. Despite being in the traditionally conservative electrical industry, they excel in strategic UGC utilization. They actively use customer feedback to refine their product offerings and measure customer satisfaction both online and in-store. Negative feedback is promptly addressed, ensuring a holistic and efficient UGC strategy.
In conclusion, user-generated content can significantly enrich your online store, fostering trust and encouraging sales. Embracing these UGC types and working strategically can set your brand apart in the increasingly competitive e-commerce landscape.
Written by Ole-Martin Evensmo
Unlock the potential of high-volume ratings and authentic reviews for impactful data and business growth.