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Study: User-generated content influences most purchase decisions


Not only is user-generated content (UGC) the go-to source for 90% of shoppers making a purchase — it outranks all other forms of marketing.

This is according to “Hearing the Voice of the Consumer: UGC and the Commerce Experience,” a report from TurnTo and executed by Ipsos. the report represents responses from more than 1,000 U.S. shoppers who made an online purchase in the past 12 months.

UGC is so influential that it surpasses all other forms of marketing, including search engines (87%) and promotional emails (79%), which came in second and third. Shoppers are also willing to pay more (81%) and wait longer (81%) for products paired with UGC, according to the study.

UGC packs a big punch with nearly a quarter of female shoppers (24%), and shoppers under 30 years old. Specifically, among those aged 18-29, 97% report UGC has an extreme influence. It also impacting the overall shopping journey, with 63% of shoppers believing UGC creates a more authentic shopping experience, and 73% saying UGC increases their purchasing confidence. Meanwhile, 61% reported that UGC encourages them to engage with brands.

“Shoppers today are more sophisticated and marketers must understand discounts and free shipping offers are simply table stakes,” said Jim Davidson, director of research, TurnTo Networks.

“Consumers demand a more engaging shopping experience; they’re looking to fellow shoppers to answer questions about products and share insights about purchases,” he said. “This study demonstrates UGC is outpacing traditional marketing tools when it comes to increasing shopper confidence and influencing decisions. Marketers who want to connect with the consumer must find ways to incorporate UGC into each step of the customer journey – not just the product page.”
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