What might be surprising to brands, however, is how consumers perceive reviews. You may think people consider marketplace reviews to be more objective, but that’s not quite how consumers see it. According to our research, consumers deem reviews on a brand’s website to be just as important as the ones found on marketplaces.
Ritika Gupta Chawla, Reprise Digital’s regional e-commerce director in APAC says “Product reviews act as a strong purchase trigger for consumers. Today, we all look for validation before making purchase decisions. We get this from reviews on marketplaces as well as brand.com sites, as both give consumers the assurance they are looking for.”
Shoppers need information — and validation — to affirm their decision about their intended purchase. For brands, building their own website to host and promote customer reviews can consolidate these comments in one place that would otherwise be scattered across marketplaces. It also makes it easy for people to find reviews and leave their own. Importantly, a strong review community helps build trust and can alleviate final concerns, giving shoppers the confidence to click the “buy” button.
3. Online shopping’s pros vs cons: A two-edged sword for shoppers
While time and cost savings are the two benefits people value most in online shopping, shipping fees and long delivery times are the deal breakers.
In our research, respondents cite “time saving” (76%) and “best prices” (65%) as the two biggest advantages of online shopping. By contrast, they name long delivery times (55%) and shipping fees (57%) as the top two disadvantages.
Online shopping is a double-edged sword for consumers, who likely struggle with the trade-off between its cost and convenience with every online purchase. Finding better prices online is great, but the added shipping fees make purchases feel expensive. Likewise, the convenience of shopping from home makes shopping easy, but then customers must contend with long shipping times.
Brands need to be aware of this decision-making process to smooth friction points in the online shopping journey. For instance, they can offer more shipping options or tweak the price and presentation of shipping options to help customers complete their purchases.