According to a recent study from BrightLocal, the date at which a customer leaves a review has an effect on how a potential customer trusts a product. Reviews older than three months are often considered to be unimportant, only the more recent reviews sway opinions.
Apparently, 40 per cent of consumers only take into account reviews that were written in the past two weeks. This is a significant increase from 18 per cent in 2017. The study also looks into the demographics that place the most importance on reviews. It looks into the average number of reviews read per consumer and how many have written reviews themselves. Here, we have some key findings from the study.
Searching for Local Businesses and Reading Reviews
We are seeing more consumers search for local businesses this year than we did last year:
- 27 per cent searched online daily for a local business (more than double the proportion in 2017)
- 69 per cent searched online for local businesses monthly (up from54 per cent)
- 56 per cent searched for local businesses weekly (up from 41 per cent last year)
According to the study, those between the ages of 18 and 34 are doing the most searching for local businesses. More than half of them search every day and 81 per cent search every week. The demographic also noted that half of those between the ages of 18 and 34 always read reviews before buying. This is compared to a mere 6 per cent of people over the age of 55. Overall, 86 per cent of consumers read local business reviews at least occasionally.
Across all demographics, the study discovered that consumers are more likely to read reviews for restaurants and cafes. Retail, grocery and hotels are also often read by all demographics. The majority of consumers read a minimum of four reviews and on average will read 10 reviews of a local business. What’s more, consumers see value in local businesses’ responses to reviews. The study found that 89 per cent of consumers read review responses.
The Influence of Local Reviews on Consumers
After reading positive reviews, half of the consumers will visit the website of a local business. This is up from 37 per cent last year. 78 per cent of consumers will interact with a local business in some way after seeing a positive review. to have includes viewing their website, making direct contactor visiting them in person. Younger consumers are more likely to visit a business in person than older consumers.
Here are some other key findings on the influence of consumer reviews:
- 68 per cent of consumers is more likely to use local businesses after seeing positive reviews.
- Negative reviews stop 40 per cent of consumers wanting to use a business
- 91 per cent of those between the ages of 18 and 34 trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
- More consumers need multiple reviews to determine trust.
- 56 per cent of consumers values the average star rating of a business.
- 49 per cent of consumers values the number of reviews.
- 57 per cent of consumers won’t use a business with less than 4 stars.
- Consumers want businesses to have 40 reviews before they trust the star rating.
When consumers were asked if they have ever written a review for a local business, 89 per cent said they would consider it. Consumers in the 18-34age range are more likely to read reviews. 80 per cent of this age group said it is something they have done before. Those over the age of 55 are the least likely to have left reviews, with 22 per cent saying that they have no intention of doing so in the future.
Fewer consumers are being asked to leave reviews, with only 66 per cent being asked compared to 74 per cent in 2017. More consumers within younger demographics are being asked to leave reviews on websites and products. This may be why more people between the ages of 18 ants34 are the most likely to leave reviews.
What does this mean for your Business?
As a business owner, reviews are essential, especially on a local scale. This is why you should be asking more of your consumers to share their opinions. Trust is key, and only your current consumers can help you to build that up with new consumers.
Talk to Search and More
There are many rules to follow if you want your business to thrive online, especially on a local scale. This is one of many reasons why having a creative digital marketing agency can be so beneficial. Having a team to offer digital support can help reduce the stresses of your online marketing. If you would like to spend more time on your business and less time on your website, then look no further. Let Search and More give you that helping hand. Get in touch to learn more about our services.