This list of online review statistics will tell you everything you need to know about the power of social proof. Online reviews are now some of the most valuable tools in the sales landscape.
In today’s digital world, customers are constantly looking for insights into which brands they can trust before they purchase anything. Around 95% of consumers read reviews before they buy anything, and 8% of consumers use these reviews to discover new local businesses.
Just as good reviews can generate new business opportunities for today’s leading companies, bad reviews can also send clients running in the opposite direction.
Today, we’re going to look at some of the most crucial online review statistics to help you understand just how important the right feedback can be.
Key Online Review Statistics – Editor’s Choices
- 72% of customers say they use Google reviews to find businesses
- 67% of local businesses maintain a four-star review or higher
- Star rating matters more to shoppers than number of reviews
- 34% of shoppers say they always read online reviews
- Businesses with a minimum of 200 reviews generate twice as much revenue
- Customers are 21% more likely to leave a review after a negative experience
- 94% of consumers have avoided a company due to a bad review
General Online Review Statistics: What Kind of People Read Reviews?
1. 31% of people read more reviews during the pandemic
During the pandemic, around 31% of customers read more reviews, while 34% said they read fewer testimonials from customers to help make decisions. However, 67% of consumers said they wouldn’t use a business if the reviews claimed the right health and safety practices weren’t in place. Another 22% of customers said they wrote reviews during the pandemic specifically to help local businesses.
2. Nine out of ten customers read reviews before buying a product
Around 89% of consumers say they make the effort to read reviews before buying products online. This implies that reviews form an essential part of the purchasing process. Most companies display reviews alongside their product listings already to help customers make better decisions.
These figures are likely even higher for digital products such as online courses or ebooks, since unlike physical products on an eCommerce store, where potential customers can browse photos of the product, digital products have only their content to rely on. In such cases, reviews act as an important social proof for new visitors who are often unsure of the value for money of the product in question.
3. 30% of shoppers under the age of 44 look at reviews for every purchase
While some consumers only look at reviews when making major purchasing decisions, around 30% of younger customers (under the age of 44), use reviews for every acquisition. Older shoppers over the age of 45 also use reviews a decent percent of the time. 19.7% of customers between the ages of 45 and 68 use reviews for every purchase.
4. 57% of online shoppers in the US find customer reviews helpful
From June 2020, Statista found that 57% of US shoppers consider online reviews to be very helpful when making purchasing decisions. A full 60% of the respondents said they always do some research online before making a major purchase.
5. 88% of smaller businesses actively monitor their reputation
During research into the activities of small businesses online, around 88% of small businesses said they monitor their online reputation on a quarterly basis. According to Clutch, more small businesses seem to recognize the value of maintaining their brand image than larger companies. The most common tool to use for monitoring is social media.
Where Do People Read Online Reviews?
6. 80% of shoppers use mobile phones to look up reviews outside of a store
Even when shopping in-person, customers turn to the web to source reviews from other customers. OuterBox found that 80% of shoppers use their smartphone inside or outside of a physical store, to find reviews, compare prices, and even search for store locations.
7. 63% of customers use Google to learn about customers
63% of consumers say they use the Google search engines to track down reviews about a company. Another 54% use Facebook, and 32% say they use Yelp. BrightLocal’s research also shows that the average local business on Google has around 39 reviews. This number varies drastically between industries. For instance, hotels are more likely to have an average of 309 reviews.
8. Yelp has over 224 million cumulative reviews
Yelp has an average of over 224 million reviews as of December 2021. The activity on Yelp comes from over 31 million unique devices. Yelp also revealed that the home and local services industry receives the most reviews, combined with the restaurant sector, at 18%. Shopping reviews are the next most popular, followed by options like “Beauty and Fitness.”
9. Reviews shared through Twitter increase sales by over 6%
Yotpo indicates that reviews shared on Twitter are more likely to increase sales than reviews on other social sites. Twitter reviews improved sales by 6.46%, while reviews on Facebook only increased eCommerce sales by around 6.46%.
10. 39% of consumers over the age of 55 say they trust reviews more than personal recommendations
According to experts from Bright Local, around 39% of customers over the age of 55 say they trust reviews as much as personal recommendations. In the lower age group, the level of trust is even higher. Around 89% of consumers aged 35 to 54 say they trust reviews as much as personal recommendations.
11. 83% of customers say reviews must be relevant and recent to be trustworthy
83% of consumers agree or “somewhat agree” that reviews need to be relevant and recent to make a difference to their purchasing decisions. Around 68% of consumers also agree they won’t trust a high review rating unless it also comes with many reviews.
Benefits of Positive Reviews
12. 58% of consumers would pay more to support a company with good reviews
Podium’s study into the state of online reviews found that 58% of consumers would travel further to engage with companies that had positive reviews or pay more for a service with good reviews. 41% of Americans believe reviews are among the most important considerations when browsing for local businesses too.
13. Review signals account for about 15% of Google local rankings
Moz found that having positive local reviews can improve your chances of ranking higher with the search engines. Reviews account for around 15.44% of SEO ranking credit. The search engines consider review quantity, diversity, velocity, and quality.
14. A 0.1% increase in star ratings increases conversions by 25%
According to Uberall, brick and mortar businesses can see some major benefits from a tiny increase in star ratings. Just increasing online start ratings by 0.1% can improve conversion rates by 25%. Uberall also found that getting a 3.7-star rating improves your chances of conversions to 120%. Additionally, a review reply rate of 30% wins more customers.
15. 38% of customers look for at least a 4-star average review
Around 38% of customers say they require at least a four-star average review to consider engaging with a business. Another 9% of consumers would consider engaging with a business that has a one- or two-star average rating.
16. Customers spend up to 31% more on companies with excellent reviews
Invesp found that customers spend up to 31% more on companies with excellent reviews. Furthermore, around 98% of customers make a purchase after checking a company’s review on Yelp. According to Invesp, the average customer reads around 4-6 reviews before deciding whether to trust a business and make a purchase.
As one might expect, the number of reviews read increases with the size of financial commitment, therefore 64% of business software buyers want to read at least six software reviews before making an actual purchase.
The Costs of Negative Reviews
17. 94% of customers say they’ve avoided a business due to negative reviews
Around 94% of consumers say they have avoided a business because of a negative online review. Additionally, 80% of consumers say the star ratings they trust most are always above four stars. Anything under that is likely to drive customers away.
18. A negative article about can drive 22% of customers away
According to Moz, companies risk losing up to 22% of customers when just one negative article pops up when searching for a product. If up to 3 negative articles appear during a search query, the potential of losing a customer increase to 59.2%.
19. You risk increasing customer churn by 15% when you don’t respond to reviews
Responding to customer reviews is just as important as generating positive ones. Chatmeter found that churn increases by an average of 15% when you refuse to respond to reviews. Customers like to see that their favorite businesses are paying attention to feedback.
20. 56% of customers say a company’s response to a review changed their perspective on the business
Podium found that the right response to a review or testimonial can significantly change how someone feels about your company. 56% of customers said they saw a business differently based on how they responded to a review.
21. 53% of customers expect brands to respond to a review within 7 days.
More than half of all customers expect any business with a negative or positive review to respond to that feedback within 7 days or less. The speed with which customers expect a response has increased significantly over the years.
22. Negative sentiment hurts SEO
Negative feedback and negative phrases can actually harm your chances of ranking with the search engines. Moz found that negative sentiment is one of the ranking factors that Google considers when determining where to place you in the search engines.
More Useful Online Review Statistics
23. 81% of customers say they leave a review 4 times per year or less
Around 81% of consumers say they’ve left a business review around four times a year or less. Only around 20% of customers say they’ve never left a business review. However, the vast majority of consumers are more likely to read reviews than leave them.
24. 62% of shoppers are more likely to buy a product after seeing other customer photos and videos
Emarketer found that visual reviews are particularly compelling for today’s shoppers. Around 62% of customers indicate they’d be more willing to buy a product if they can view the photos and videos left behind by other customers.
25. People are most likely to leave reviews for excellent products
Although it’s increasingly common for customers to leave negative reviews about a product online, the most common reason to leave a review is because the service or product was excellent (56%). The second most common reason to leave a review is because the product was unsatisfactory.
26. 72% of people asked to leave a review will do so
BrightLocal discovered that around 73% of consumers have been asked for a review by a company in the past. Around 72% of the people who said they had been asked for feedback from a company also provided a review.
27. Fake reviews waste consumer money
According to Trustpilot, fake reviews are among the most significant issues consumers have to deal with when shopping. Fake testimonials and feedback cost the average American consumer to waste around $125 per year.
28. Businesses are more likely to respond to positive reviews
Around 54% of local businesses say they respond to all or most reviews. However, it’s more likely that a company will respond to a positive review than a negative one. Around 16% of local companies never respond to reviews at all.
Online Reviews – Finishing Thoughts
These online review statistics show that consumers everywhere trust online reviews and feedback to help them make purchasing decisions. The more reviews you have, and the more recent and relevant they appear to be, the more likely you are to achieve conversions. What’s more, if you respond to the reviews you receive, you can improve customer opinion and sentiment towards your brand. Responding to negative reviews will teach you what your customers expect from your business, and give you a chance to rectify problems with customer service.