By the end of 2021, e-commerce transactions
are on track to account for 15.3% of all
purchases made in the U.S. In 2022, that
number will grow to 17.3% — a record high.1
As more of the world’s commerce continues to move online, the competition for consumers’ dollars has increased like never before. As a result, brand marketers must face the challenging task of using various channels like SEM, SEO, email, and social media to drive consumers to their product page and convert them into customers. Historically, e-commerce conversion rates hover around 1-3% depending on the type of site and its popularity. 2
In general, consumers shop online because it’s more convenient. And with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, online shopping quickly became the safest buying option. However, consumers don’t always know which specific product will fully meet their needs and often seek help making purchasing decisions.
So how do marketers overcome the challenge of increasing product page conversion, driving revenue, and reducing customer acquisition costs? How can a brand convert visitors into loyal customers without the personal interaction of a salesperson answering questions, giving credible product recommendations, and providing the confidence they need to make the purchase?
A dialed product display page will help address and alleviate many of these concerns. We recently surveyed 132 brands to see what elements they see as significant conversion drivers on their product display pages. Throughout this guide, we’ll discuss several of those elements in detail.
Product reviews, images and pricing are viewed as the
most important e-comm display element for conversion
1. Product Reviews
Why are product reviews so important?
It came as no surprise that an overwhelming majority (88%) of our survey respondents said that product reviews are most important. Authentic customer feedback is an essential piece of the PDP puzzle as it establishes consumer trust that, in turn, increases conversion and average order volume. There’s no better representation of that feedback than reviews. In a consumer survey, 68% of respondents ranked reviews as the most influential element of a product display page, even higher than product videos.3
Consumers inevitably have questions they want answered before they make a purchase — this is particularly true with a brand new product. If they can’t find the answer on your site, they’ll leave just as quickly as they came to do their research elsewhere. This leaves you vulnerable to the consumer exploring other options, potentially making their final purchase from a competing brand or e-commerce site.
And this is why brands must invest in strategies to move beyond collecting the typical "great" or "terrible product" reviews. Strategies that instead result in thoughtful, constructive feedback about what consumers like and dislike about a product. There are, of course, many ways to collect reviews, which was evident in the aforementioned brand survey. 53% of brands said they rely on email campaigns. 35% said social media campaigns. Around 30% said product sampling, influencer, ambassador, and incentive campaigns.
But gathering these reviews is only one part of the equation. Displaying the right reviews, the ones that provide an authentic recommendation about your product, is what really matters. And that’s where the ExpertVoice Recommendation Display excels.
Expert reviews from the ExpertVoice Advocacy Platform
How to maximize the effectiveness of reviews
The Recommendation Display is different from a standard stream of customer reviews. It showcases curated recommendations from experts and features their real name, photo, and area of expertise along with their experience using the product to help consumers understand and trust its value. And it has a direct impact on sales. Adding the Recommendation Display to a product page and optimizing its placement increases sales by up to 40%. 4
Expert recommendations act as your digital sales team by influencing potential consumers with authentic testimonies of quality and value. In addition, positive reviews reassure the potential buyer that the purchase was a good choice for others and could be for them. And since experts receive no personal benefit or gain for their reviews and recommendations, they’re often viewed as a more honest and reliable source of information than the brand itself.
But it isn’t just positive reviews that are effective. Negative reviews help people understand what wasn't a good fit for the reviewer but might be for the prospective buyer. Negative studies also reveal how a user may have misunderstood or misused the product.
2. User-Generated Content (UGC)
Why is user-generated content so important?
In the number six spot of our brand survey results is user-generated content with 23% of respondents saying it plays a major role in their e-commerce conversions. It would appear that brands are right in line with what consumers expect. Consumer survey results show that 22% view UGC as the most important part of a PDP.3 It sits just behind all of the standard elements consumers have come to expect on a PDP like reviews, product descriptions, images, videos, and pricing info.
But what do we mean when we say user-generated content? User-generated content are photos and videos from customers using the product. Just like reviews, UGC minimizes anxiety and makes the consumer feel as if they're not alone in this decision.
Since UGC is organic and authentic, it's much more engaging and influential. And because it’s posted by real people on their personal social media channels, it provides potential buyers with evidence that customers were so satisfied with their purchase that they wanted to spread the word to their network. This social proof reduces buying anxiety and makes the digital purchase feel less intimidating. Proving that other consumers are happy with their investment boosts the buyer's trust. So much so that brands who incorporate UGC into their product pages often see at least a 29% increase in conversions.5
User-generated content from the ExpertVoice Advocacy Platform
How to maximize the effectiveness of UGC
Brands can leverage UGC in multiple ways to drive traffic to their product pages and convert potential consumers to loyal customers.
- Collect quality UGC: Use the ExpertVoice Advocacy Platform to drive the collection of quality UGC that you have rights to use and display in your marketing materials,
e-commerce and social channels.
- Drive traffic to the product page: Featuring authentic UGC in a brand's newsletter, blog or social media channel encourages consumers to visit the product page to learn more about the item and hopefully, make a purchase.
- Convert consumers to customers on the product page: Displaying UGC directly on the product page is social proof the product is worth the investment.
3. Product Details
Description, Price, Images, & Video
Why are product details important?
While it may seem like a given to include pertinent product details on a product page, the level of weight you give each type of detail varies. In our brand survey, 75% of respondents said that product images are most important, just behind reviews. Conversely in consumer surveys, 40% said the same thing — again, just behind reviews.
Next on the brand results list is price. When it comes to making a conversion, 63% said that price was even more important than a product description which came in at 56%. Finally, product videos came in at 50%, just ahead of UGC.
While these elements might not carry quite as much weight as consumer reviews alone, together they give your product page the meaty details that consumers expect when shopping online.
How to maximize the effectiveness of product details
The results of our survey indicate a certain pecking order of how these elements can be weighted to maximize effectiveness. However, you might find a different order of importance for your brand. The best way to determine that is to optimize your page. Run tests of different versions of your product pages. Talk to a trusted audience, like the kind you can build with the ExpertVoice Advocacy Platform, to find out what’s most important to them and what details they expect to see.
Now that you know the three strategies to increase product page conversions and revenue, discover how partnering with ExpertVoice can help you achieve these goals.
The robust ExpertVoice Advocacy Platform can help you generate predictable and authentic UGC and easily add it to your product pages to increase revenue in your e-commerce channels. At over one million strong, the ExpertVoice community is the world’s largest community of passionate, knowledgeable, and authentic experts. By joining forces with ExpertVoice, brands can develop relationships with these experts and obtain credible, authentic reviews, insights, and UGC to improve the performance of their e-commerce channel all in one place — the ExpertVoice Advocacy Platform.
Explore how ExpertVoice E-Commerce Advocacy can boost your e-commerce sales with better performing product display pages and help your consumers have a better buying experience.
Contact ExpertVoice today to learn how you can start gathering predictable,
authentic recommendations and automatically show the most quality ones to
your consumers when and where it matters most.
- Case Study: Expert reviews boost e-commerce revenue by 40% when displayed in the right place