When online customer reviews were introduced in the 1990s, most fashion brands and retailers thought it was a terrible idea, but reviews can be an extremely beneficial tool if used wisely. The advancement of social networks and constant connectivity has given great power to consumers, but there is also power in customer reviews for businesses.
Customer reviews are now an essential part of the fashion shopping journey. They help consumers with questions about everything from fit to quality, safety, style, sustainability, and ethics. The research group Forrester predicts that half of clothing sales in Europe this year will be researched online before being purchased in-store, and even in-store consumers are increasingly using their smartphones to browse reviews as they shop.
Now that consumers have been given a voice, they are increasingly willing to share their opinions publicly and seek out what others have to say. When researching fashion products and retailers, 85% of consumers are more likely to trust customer ratings and reviews over other media, just behind word of mouth.
Source: Trustpilot & London Research 2020 international survey
Consumers not only want to feel more connected with other consumers, but they want to feel more connected with brands. Demands for more personalized products that meet their quality and safety expectations have, in a sense, placed consumers in the supply chain. Brands are not only having to adapt their traditional purchasing processes accordingly, but are also feeling greater pressure to bring products to the market that live up to their promises.
How can brands benefit from the power of reviews?
Consumer reviews are a valuable tool in learning whether a brand’s product is relevant to its audience and better than its competitors’.
While few would dispute the positive impacts that good reviews can have on a brand, bad reviews offer an opportunity to improve that may not have otherwise been known. Despite the disastrous effects that negative reviews can have on product sales and brand image, if brands respond to the feedback appropriately, it sends a message to customers that the brand is listening and willing to bring improved products to the market in terms of quality and safety. Customer reviews can also unearth niches and opportunities in the market that are yet to be explored.
Product reviews can number in the millions for some brands, and navigating these reviews to identify real issues and root causes can be tricky and time-consuming. Support from a third party can help assess and identify these issues and establish suitable recommendations.
Listening to the voice of the customer to create better products
At SgT, we help our customers improve quality and safety at the product development stage to meet their consumer expectations. Our dedicated five-step program that aims to:
- help fashion brands and retailers listen and understand consumer feedback
- identify the causes of bad ratings
- establish recommendations for product improvements
What are the benefits for brands?
- Better and differentiated products
- Increased quality and safety
- Increased customer satisfaction
- Supplier empowerment
- Better budget allocation
Interested in finding out how SgT can help you bring better products to the market?