Online reviews offer an eCommerce business free advertising as well as a springboard for increasing their sales.
Nothing can be more powerful in encouraging online shoppers to buy a product from an unfamiliar brand than a great review.
According to Forbes, 90% of online consumers read online reviews, which affect the purchasing decisions of 67% of them.
They rely greatly on other people’s experience; nice words and five-star ratings mean a product is good value for money.
A report from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) shows an estimated £23 billion of annual consumer spending in the UK is influenced by online reviews.
However, fake reviews are rampant these days that it’s difficult to tell them from those that were written by genuine customers.
Bogus information deprives consumers of the real deal and puts online retailers in a bad light.
To address this long-standing issue, the British Standards Institution (BSI) published a new international standard for online consumer reviews and called it ISO 20488.
The requirements and objectives of ISO 20488
The new voluntary standard requires anyone who posts a product review online to provide their contact details so that retailers can check whether they’re genuine customers or not.
Reviewers can, of course, still post anonymously so long as they furnish their contact details.
An inappropriate or fake review can be flagged by an online retailer, whilst the person who posted it has the right to respond.
ISO 201488 is certainly going to produce a win-win result as it allows every eCommerce business to screen reviews, while leaving customers to honestly share information on a product they’ve purchased.
David Fatscher, head of sustainability and services at BSI, further explained:
“Millions of us depend on consumer reviews to guide our purchases, and they are a valuable tool to build trust in ecommerce.
“ISO 20488 is an answer to the current thorny issue of online reviews, where a lack of standardized guidance has left consumers in the dark as to the accuracy of a review.”
Plus, it can keep competitors, who want to gain the lead by painting a bad picture of your business, at bay. Don’t you think?
Share your thoughts in the comments below.
As always, to your continued success,
Dave & Matt