As an eCommerce entrepreneur, you probably understand how important high-quality content is to your brand. Most companies work with professionals to create content for their brand, but what about working with your customers to achieve the same goal? User-generated content offers a host of benefits for your eCommerce brand, and should have a place in your content marketing strategy.
Why is User-Generated Content Valuable to Your Brand?
1. User-Generated Content (UGC) is authentic.
Today's shoppers appreciate authenticity. There are thousands of disingenuous brands online, and shoppers will recognize authenticity when they see it. UGC is authentic because it comes from real consumers – consumers your audience can relate to. It's no secret that many brands stretch the truth in their content, so UGC's inherent authenticity appeals to many online shoppers.
2. UGC is a source of social proof.
Social proof ties in with authenticity in that it helps build trust between you and your customer. Shoppers are inspired to make a purchase when they see social proof online because it's honest, authentic, and genuine. Reviews are a type of UGC commonly seen on eCommerce product pages, and for good reason – reviews provide honest social proof. When your audience sees positive (or negative) customer reviews about a product, they'll feel more informed about your product. Your product description may boast the benefits of your product, but your UGC will tell your customer the truth about what they can expect. This is highly valuable to your customer, and highly valuable to your company as well.
3. Visual UGC improves your store's shopping experience.
Uninspired stock photos can be found on every eCommerce store, but only 9 percent of consumer brands feature user-generated content on their product pages. Shoppers are tired of standard stock photos and boring, predictable product videos, and UGC gives them the fresh perspective they need to be interested in a brand. Whether it be an unboxing video, a video review, or photos of your product from social media, UGC improves the look and feel of your product pages, and it creates a more trustworthy shopping experience for your customer.
How to Harness the Power of User-Generated Content
User-generated content can benefit almost any company – including yours. UGC can be used in dozens of ways, and you should use it in a way that best benefits your brand. We put together a list of ways you can use UGC to improve your customer experience, increase your conversion rate, and attract a larger audience:
1. Know your brand's social media influencers, and use their content on your site.
If you've spent any time on YouTube, you've probably found at least one video of someone reviewing a product. In fact, many brands pay YouTube influencers to review their products on camera because of how valuable this kind of UGC is to their brand. You should harness this power by using UGC created by influencers in your niche. If a popular YouTube star reviews your product and give it a positive rating, post the video on your product page. These influencers are popular because of their honesty and the quality of their content. Their authentic videos will resonate well with your audience, so make them an important part of your brand.
2. Make reviews a key part of your product pages.
Shoppers are far more likely to make a purchase if they see positive reviews about the product that holds their interest. Positive reviews from customers can alleviate any buyer's guilt your shopper might feel before making a purchase, significantly increasing your chances to convert.
Always include a section for customer reviews on your product pages, and encourage your customers to leave reviews. If you want to take it a step further, allow your customers to post photos of your product as well. This will help you build trust with other shoppers from the moment they visit your store.
3. Help customers post-purchase with UGC.
After your customer recieves their product, there's a good chance they'll have some questions about how it works – particularly if you sell tech products. Many customers will turn to your website when they have questions about their product, and consumer-created tutorials are one of the best ways to help them. Many influencers create tutorials for their favorite products, whether they show how the product itself operates, or unique ways in which the product can be used. Find professional tutorials from influencers in your niche, and post them on your product pages.
Find professional tutorials from influencers in your niche, and post them on your product pages. Not only will you help customers after they've made a purchase, but they'll be inclined to visit your store any time they have future questions.
How does your brand use UGC to improve your customer experience? Has the inclusion of UGC had a positive impact on your store? If so, how? Let us know in the comments below!