The latest whitepaper from Bazaarvoice ‘A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Purchases – How Visual and Social Content Increase Online Sales’ analyses how visual and social user-generated content (UGC) impact online sales. The e-book discusses survey results from over 8,000 consumers on their approach to online shopping, the buying decisions they make and the routes they take to purchase.
Here are the highlights of the survey findings that the eBook discusses in detail:
Online Sales Improve with User-Generated Social Content
The pandemic period saw an extensive rise in online sales, driven primarily by physical stores having to close shop due to countries announcing repeated lockdowns. The IBM Retail Index states that the pandemic has accelerated the extent of online shopping by more than five years.
However, despite the increase in online sales, cart abandonment is a common issue for online retailers, with over two-thirds of online shoppers discarding their carts. What has helped online retailers to counter this problem is having ratings and visually rich reviews for products. The eBook cites why and how this resolves the cart abandonment issue and how retailers can benefit from visual and social user-generated content that uses product photos and videos.
Online Sales Benefit from Social and Visual Content Due to Better Relatability
Online shoppers are influenced by peers and friends, who share videos and photos of their latest buys. The reviews and their experience help them relate to how they may feel about the product, building trust in the brand. Sixty-two percent of shoppers buy online when they see rich visuals of the new buys and unboxing videos. Visuals, and videos help online sales, as buyers gauge its value to their own needs, which a mere product listing and description do not reveal. Moreover, Google also factors in UGC to rank brand content in their search results, thus helping online sales for the brands that allow for visual reviews.
How to Drive Trust in Products to Improve Online Sales
Since online shoppers have the disadvantage of not getting the chance to touch-feel products before purchase, building product trust is extremely important. So, how can eCommerce brands build trust? The eBook cites results of Bazaarvoice’s 2020 Shopper Experience Index that found that 78% of online shoppers trust product reviews, with 39% stating that product reviews were the decisive factor to make an informed purchase.
The survey goes deeper to suggest to online retailers the number of reviews they should aim at eliciting from their customers. It also gives tips and tricks to engage shoppers with real examples of brands like Parachute, and KidKraft, which encourage customers to create brand UGC content and ensure it is available across social channels where their prospects are discovering new products.
Product Categories where Visual UGC Impacts Online Sales
The eBook also explores which products are benefited more from rich visual UGC. Download the eBook to know the various buys for which 36% of the respondents relied on photos and videos from other customers.
How Social Commerce Aids Online Sales
With more brands increasing their social media outreach and social channels like Facebook and Instagram helping buyers at every stage of the purchase from product discovery to consideration to purchase, social commerce will only grow in prevalence. Nineteen percent of the survey respondents stated shoppable images and videos were most influential in their buying decisions.
Visual UGC drives online sales extensively, and this is evident from the fact that 64% of respondents wanted brands to post real customer photos. The eBook has specific insights on the count of posts and their frequency that will ensure better sales for businesses and the social media channels most popular with buyers with the highest conversion rates.
As an example of success with visual UGC and how it can be done effectively, the eBook cites the Parachute home essentials brand, which has optimized its ad campaigns around UGC by deploying Bazaarvoice’s technology. Download the eBook to know Parachute’s strategy that generated a 35% higher CTR and a 60% lower CPC.
Compelling UGC Impacts on Online Sales
User reviews have always impacted buying decisions and increased conversion rates. But, what about user reviews that influence buyers to act. The eBook highlights critical qualities of a review that brands must seek from their customers to ensure their prospects make the buying decision in the brand’s favor.
Transforming Shopping Experience to Drive Online Sales
Digital transformation has led to increased opportunities for online retailers. With social media driving awareness and building trust in brands through user reviews, marketers need to help their customers relate to their products online to decide to buy. Rich social UGC is the way to drive increased online sales.
Key Recommendations to Drive Online Sales through Social UGC
The eBook concludes with good recommendations that brands can adapt and align to their products for a successful social UGC strategy starting with prospect analysis and going on to elaborate on content formats, both visual and video, which drive online sales.
Learn more about how your brand can build shopper confidence and how your business can collaborate with partners to create a media-rich UGC plan by downloading the eBook here.