Online reviews have become an essential part of not only eCommerce, but buyer behavior in general. Before visiting a restaurant, booking a hotel, making a purchase online, or even seeing a doctor, consumers want to know about other consumers’ experiences. While the use of online reviews varies across industries and across different review sites, these online review statistics do clearly show the impact online reviews have on both customers and businesses. This post has been updated in 2021 to include recent data regarding online reviews.

26 Online Review Statistics You Need to Know

How useful are online reviews? How many customers actually read them? How much do reviews really impact buying decisions? These online review statistics give important insights into how consumers feel about online reviews and how they are used day-to-day.

1. 72% of consumers say positive reviews make them trust a business more (Invesp)

2. 84% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. (Bright Local)

3. Before visiting a business, 89% of consumers read online reviews. (Trustpilot)

4. 98% of consumers indicate reviews are an essential resource when making purchase decisions. (Power Reviews)

5. Consumers are likely to spend 31% more money at a business with excellent reviews. (Reputation X)

 

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Should you respond to online reviews?

Businesses are not powerless against negative online reviews. With the right response to a negative review, business owners can change a customer’s perception. But do customers really read these responses? Online review statistics say yes.

6. 96% of consumers who read online reviews will also read the business’ response to their reviews. (Bright Local)

7. 7 out of 10 consumers indicated their perception of a brand changed after reading the brand’s response to an online review. (Marketing Charts)

8. Businesses that don’t reply to any reviews earn 9% less revenue compared to the average. (Womply)

It’s clear a majority of consumers read both the customer’s online review and the business’s response to the online review. Statistics show timeliness is important when it comes to responding to reviews.

9. 53% of consumers expect businesses to respond to a negative review within a week. (Review Trackers)

10. 20% of consumers who write reviews expect to receive a response within one day. (Bright Local)

Do star ratings matter?

There are many elements of online reviews. A star rating, the content of the review itself, who is posting it, where it is posted, and whether the review is trustworthy or not. It turns out that star ratings are important, and can actually have a measurable impact on a business’s revenue.

11. Every 1-star change to a Yelp rating indicates a 5 – 9% change in a business’s revenue. (Search Engine Journal)

12. Ratings and reviews have become the most important factor impacting purchase decisions, ranking above price, free shipping, brand, and recommendations from family and friends. (Power Reviews)

13. On average, consumers want to see at least 40 reviews before thinking a star rating is legitimate. (Search Engine Journal)

14. Only 48% of consumers would consider using a business with fewer than 4 stars. (Bright Local)

15. The likelihood of a product being purchased increases by 270% when it receives a five-star review. (Spiegel Research Center)

How many online reviews do you need?

How many online reviews does it take to make an impact on the buyer experience? How many reviews do consumers need to see to be convinced that the overall assessment is trustworthy? How many reviews do other businesses have? These numbers vary, but some of these online review statistics can help you get a better idea of how many reviews you need and why.

16. The average business on Google has 39 reviews. (Search Engine Journal)

17. On average, consumers need to read 10 reviews before trusting a business. (RevLocal)

18. The likelihood of a product getting purchased increases by 270% when it gets five reviews. (Spiegel Research Center)

19. 68% of consumers say that in an ideal world, a product would have 26 or more reviews. (Power Reviews)

How do Negative Online Reviews Impact Your Business?

The impact of negative reviews on your business can vary depending on multiple factors. For the most part, it’s actually a good thing to have negative reviews. Consumers want to see a healthy balance between positive and negative reviews. Research shows consumers intentionally seek out negative reviews and are suspicious of businesses that don’t have any.

20. 82% of online shoppers intentionally seek out negative reviews. (Spiegel Research Center)

21. Businesses with 15-20% negative online reviews earn 13% more annual revenue compared to those with 5-10% negative online reviews. (Womply)

22. 46% of shoppers are suspicious of products with an average star rating of five out of five. (Power Reviews)

How do you get customers to leave reviews?

So online reviews are important, but how can you get more reviews? Well, there’s no magic formula, but the clearest way is also the simplest; ask. Keep in mind however that not all review sites allow you to solicit reviews from customers. Yelp, for example, explicitly forbids the use of review solicitation, and only allows reviews submitted from customers unprompted.

23. 28% of consumers are likely to leave a review after a positive experience (ReviewTrackers).

24. 70% of consumers asked to leave a review did so. (Search Engine Land)

25. 56% of consumers will leave a review if their experience with the product was excellent. (JungleScout)

26. 91.6% of businesses leverage automatic review requests (Birdeye)

 

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Whether you’re a brand new business or you’ve been around for decades, you can change your online reputation and start making these online review statistics work for you right now. Where appropriate, ask your customers for online reviews. You might be surprised at how many customers are willing to give their support.

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