How Product Reviews Are Transforming Retail Chains: The Omnichannel Approach

Written by: Tone Loberg
Posted on: January 31, 2023

Product reviews have become a cornerstone in shaping the future of retail chains. With an increasing number of consumers starting their buying journey online, retail giants are doubling down on their digital footprint. Through loyalty programs, they are amassing a trove of product reviews, which not only enhances customer experience but also generates invaluable data. This article delves into how product reviews are revolutionizing retail chains’ omnichannel strategies.

The Digital Start of the Customer Journey

Whether a customer intends to make a purchase online or in a physical store, the journey usually begins on the internet. For categories like clothing and electronics, only 15% of customers neglect to do online research before heading to a physical store. This emphasizes the imperative for retail chains to establish a robust online presence to drive both online and in-store sales.

Investing in the Digital Arena

The COVID-19 pandemic catalyzed an explosive growth in online sales. For some industries, online channels now account for half of the total revenue. Although the online share might be smaller for most retail chains, its impact on overall sales cannot be overlooked. Even sectors like groceries, building materials, and pharmacies—where online sales were historically low—are ramping up their digital strategies.

Companies like Apotek 1, Norway’s leading pharmacy chain, and Flisekompaniet are actively gathering customer reviews through platforms like Lipscore to maintain a competitive edge.

Reviews as a Sales Catalyst

Jonny, COO at Lipscore, explains, “In today’s fast-paced life, online shopping offers convenience. Reviews furnish customers with vital information about quality and price, increasing sales across both online and physical platforms.”

Building Trust and Traffic Through Reviews

With customers scouring the internet 24/7 for products and services, simply having an online store isn’t enough. Accurate product descriptions, stock status, pricing, and a significant number of reviews are crucial to inspire trust and drive sales for physical stores as well.

Loyalty Programs and Review Collection

Retail chains are increasingly investing in loyalty programs to generate a voluminous and diverse set of product reviews. Usually, retailers only acquire reviews from online purchases, but giants like Skeidar and Elektroimportøren are starting to collect reviews from in-store purchases as well, significantly boosting their online review count.

Unveiling New Possibilities with Customer Data

The collection of reviews and ratings isn’t just beneficial for consumers; it’s a goldmine of data for retail chains. This data can aid in optimizing product descriptions, developing better products, enhancing customer service, and even fine-tuning logistics and distribution.

Final Thoughts

Product reviews are more than just customer testimonials; they are a revolutionary force in retail, reshaping how retail chains operate. Through the systematic gathering of customer data, not just on products but also on the overall shopping experience, retail chains can gain a more nuanced understanding of customer needs and preferences.

For more insights, read: How to Implement a Customer-Oriented and Data-Driven Business Strategy Without Large Investments.

Source: NovaRetail and NHO Service og Handel

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