How Reliable Are Online Reviews ?

October 24, 2023

Does your company prioritise getting customer reviews or do you just allow this to happen organically as people see fit? As a customer yourself, how many emphasis do you place upon reviews before making a choice when you buy something?

Many of us have a lot on our plate and it’s difficult to prioritise finding the time to write an assessment. In my experience, people tend to leave reviews if they have either had a really good experience or a really bad one; especially so in the case of the latter.

In these days of GDPR, how much credence do you give to a website’s listed reviews from customers, especially those which are not dated and don’t even mention to which product or service they relate?

I do take into account reviews on a certain large online marketplace from verified purchasers, but even with those, you have to be aware that certain retailers will either offer refunds or discounts to customers who have made a purchase and leave a positive review; I know because this has happened to me.

How much credence would you give to an influencer who this week endorses a green natural product, but next week can be seen getting into a V8 gas guzzler?

No one likes to be caught out buying a product online which then breaks as soon as you open the box. Getting a refund can be very tricky too if they then claim they didn’t receive your return or it actually costs you more to return the item tracked, packaged and then taken to a drop off point within a stipulated period than the cost of buying another from a competitor.

But have we become victims of this deception partly by our councils taxing our shops out of business coupled by our inability to shop locally because we can’t find anywhere to park? You can bet your bottom dollar that Mr Jones from the local ironmongers would have returned those defective plastic clothes pegs as soon as Mrs Smith came in to show him how quickly they had broken…

Caveat emptor as they say.

Do you feel reviews are important for your business and if so, how much time do you spend trying to encourage customers to give them?

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