Product descriptions and marketing slogans aren’t the only things found on all those awesome online retail sites. Customer reviews feature prominently on the sites as well. You would think there would be concerns over allowing customers to leave unfiltered reviews. Negative commentary could, after all, hurt sales. Perhaps nothing would hurt sales more than trying to hide what customers feel. Potential buyers want to read reviews. All those lengthy and not-so-lengthy paragraphs reflecting customer sentiments reveal a lot.
Not every consumer pays attention to what customer reviews state. Assumptions that other people’s opinions don’t matter or are exclusive to them can be shortsighted. Anyone who wishes to buy any type of product benefits from checking out reviews. Four compelling reasons indicate why this is so.
1- Consumers Learn About the Products
Reviews do not just present emotional statements about what the buyer didn’t like. The consumer may present detailed information about how the product works, the associated features, and critical specs. Someone who says “I hated how the product required assembly” or “I loved how easy the product was to use” tell a potential buyer concrete facts. Yes, certain points of information can be drawn from the actual product description. Such descriptions aren’t exactly as detailed or as verbose as a consumer review though. “Verbose” doesn’t always equate with rambling either. The lengthy reviews written by some may provide exceptionally clear details about what to expect from the product. That takes more than a bit of mystery out of the purchase.
2- The Exact Value for the Money Can Be Revealed
When paying for a product, consumers expect some fort of dollar-to-benefit ratio. Spending a lot of money on a particular product might be worth the expense if the product proves to have a long life. A product that saves a consumer money — such as something capable of improving energy efficiency — also delivers beneficial value.
Not everyone has a lot of money to spend on products. Purchasing something that lacks value doesn’t help a stretched budget. Learning about what to expect dollar-wise from a purchase helps with making an appropriate buying decision. Product reviews feature that all-important type of information.
3- Helps Decisions to Switch to Other Brands
Everyone likes to get what they expect from a product. Among the easiest ways to achieve this result involves purchasing a name brand you are familiar with. Surprises are eliminated when buying the same type of car or television set. Such consumer decisions reflect the essence of brand loyalty. However, consumers might not be buying the best product when dogmatically following this strategy. What happens when consumers make a not-so-perfect buying decision early on and find themselves loyal to a brand producing a weak product? Perhaps such consumers need to get out of their comfort zone.
Something must compel the buyers to make that comfort zone change. Why stop buying product “Y” when product “X” presents nothing but question marks? Reading product reviews eliminates those nebulous questions marks thanks to the insights the reviewers put forth.
4- Access to Credible Commentary
Not all product and customer reviews are written solely by a consumer. Online and print magazines owned and operated by established media organizations invest heavily in publishing product reviews. Professionally-published consumer reviews seek to present a factual, unbiased review of products. Customers, generally, can put a lot of faith into these reviews. As long as the entity publishing the reviews maintains consistent credibility, there’s no reason to doubt the veracity of the review opinions. Consumer review magazines definitely do help with seeing a decent picture of a product’s merits or demerits.
Last, well-written product reviews can be interesting, informative, and entertaining. Time reading a good review would be time well spent.