How Retailers Can Tap Into User Generated Content To Convert More Customers

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Retails are always out there looking for an edge. With email marketing, something that’s seemingly small, just a lift in 1% in the open, click, and conversion rates can translate into a big boost in sales. 

One way to help improve your email marketing is to start including some user-generated content (UGC). This content is invaluable. It’s essentially no cost to your brand, and it does make a real difference to consumers. 

The evidence bears out that, in retail, especially. That includes user-generated content in marketing campaigns, which has been shown to increase conversion. A study by Yotpo found significant jumps in conversion rates (from 80 to over 200%) in apparel, fitness, food, electronic and health and beauty brands that included UGC in their marketing.

Here are a few ways retailers can start using UGC to convert more customers. 

Ask for reviews, ratings, and testimonials

If you don’t have reviews and ratings ready to go on your site, all is not lost. All you have to do is start asking for them. 

Many brands create a post-purchase email campaign that is geared toward nurturing the relationship with consumers who have already bought. Part of that is asking for their feedback on your products and services. 

bark box email rating

By simply asking your customers to give you their thoughts and opinions, you’re building a good relationship with them. Not to mention, you’re also creating user-generated content that you can then utilize to attract more customers.

Highlight reviews and ratings

One of the easiest ways to start incorporating user-generated content into your marketing is to start with reviews and ratings. Many brands now highlight ratings on products on their websites. 

This approach isn’t just an empty gesture. Research shows that when consumers see product ratings and reviews throughout the sales funnel, they are more likely to buy. Plus, seeing at least five reviews, as well as recent reviews, also builds trust with the brand. 

So, showcase the reviews and ratings you have for your products.

Capitalize on user-generated content 

If there’s one thing you should know about the internet, it’s full of really creative people. What you need to do is find and boost who is creating content around your products and services. 

One recent example is Ocean Spray. In late 2020, a viral TikTok took off when Nathan Apodaca took a video of himself skateboarding while listening to Fleetwood Mac and drinking Ocean Spray Cran-Raspberry juice.

@420doggface208Morning vibe ##420souljahz ##ec ##feelinggood ##h2o ##cloud9 ##happyhippie ##worldpeace ##king ##peaceup ##merch ##tacos ##waterislife ##high ##morning ##710 ##cloud9♬ Dreams (2004 Remaster) – Fleetwood Mac

This short video took the internet by storm. It was a boost for both Ocean Spray and Fleetwood Mac and unleashed all sorts of related user-generated content. Members from the band, other celebrities, and even the CEO of Ocean Spray all released short videos of them copying this feelgood video.

Make your customers the stars

One of the best things about user-generated content is you’re getting the real, authentic opinion of your customers. And when they love your product enough to make a video or share their thoughts on social media, it’s a great way to highlight them. 

Making your customers the stars of your marketing has plenty of benefits. First, it helps make your brand seem more authentic too. That’s really valuable in an era where trust between consumers and brands can be low. 

Virtually all consumers search reviews before they shop online. And, those consumers also tend to trust the opinions and reviews of strangers before what you say about your own brand. Showcasing user-generated content helps close that trust gap. The social proof consumers see from other customers just like them matters and can help nudge them in the direction of buying.

Embrace user-generated content

Here’s the cool thing, once you’ve started stockpiling testimonials and product reviews from user-generated content, you can start using it all over your email marketing. There are plenty of benefits to doing it.

Adding at least a few forms of UGC into your marketing can give wary consumers just enough push they need to turn into buyers. For many brands, especially smaller retail and mom and pop shops, those gains matter.

Just a small lift in conversion rates can end up making a huge difference in your bottom line. What brand doesn’t want more of that?

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