6 Reasons Photo Reviews Matter for eCommerce Businesses
Photo reviews: pretty, nice-to-have additions to your store or vital workhorses your brand needs?
If you don’t immediately side with the latter, you’re doing a serious disservice to your eCommerce business.
Photo reviews from customers have the power to raise brand awareness, increase conversions, drive sales, and so much more, as you’ll learn today.
They’re part of a growing trend of user-generated content (UGC) that businesses are successfully leveraging. And they go a lot further than simply adding star ratings and text-only reviews throughout your store.
So in this guide, we’ll run through why photo reviews are important for eCommerce businesses and how to get more of them.
6 Reasons Photo Reviews are Like Printing Money for Your eCommerce Business
Though that heading might be a bit of an exaggeration, photo reviews are like gold for eCommerce brands. And these six reasons prove why:
1. Photo Reviews Establish Trust, Credibility, and Social Proof
Social proof is a phenomenon that explains why people are more likely to take action when they see that others have already done so.
As we talked about in our guide on Social Proof Experiments To Boost eCommerce Sales, online brands must cultivate social proof to establish trust and credibility with shoppers.
Without physical locations for them to see, touch, or even smell your items, shoppers must rely on your high-quality product images, compelling product descriptions, and customer reviews.
A staggering 89% of consumers read reviews before making a purchase -- and just one review on your product page can boost conversion rates by 354%.
Shoppers want to see and hear how other people use and feel about your products. They’re looking to confirm that your items live up to your images and descriptions (and aren’t fake).
Since 59% of consumers prefer visual information over text, most shoppers will swipe through your customer photos before diving into the write-ups.
Once they see photos from people just like them, they’ll immediately build trust in your brand and boost your chances of a sale. In fact, research shows 60% of consumers believe UGC like photo reviews is 3x more authentic and trustworthy than brand-created content.
2. Make Your Online Store “Stickier”
The goal of making your eCommerce store “sticky” is to get shoppers to (literally) stick around. The longer they browse, the higher their odds of making a purchase.
Good news? Customer-generated photos are one of the best ways to keep shoppers glued to your store. And there are more places to sprinkle around these photos than your product pages, such as your:
Homepage. Encourage product discovery with shoppable galleries that showcase your best customer content as soon as someone lands on your site.
Checkout. You can decrease cart abandonment by showing off your best customer content at checkout, or upsell recommended products, in shoppable UGC galleries. You’ll juice average order values without breaking a sweat.
💡 Check out this guide on The Top 5 Tips and Tricks to Making Your eCommerce Store Stickier (And What That Is) next!
3. Customer Review Photos Might Actually Save Your Business Money
Adding at least four product images (one from every angle) is a standard best practice in eCommerce. A 360-degree video or augmented reality (AR) is even better.
But let’s face it, adding content like this isn’t cheap. The cost of staging and editing product images may creep up to $100 per photo. Multiply that for every product you sell in your store, and the expense quickly skyrockets.
So what if you could outsource this pricey task to your customers?
Many major retailers now include customer photos in their main product image lineup.
For example, they’ll add two brand-created visuals to establish legitimacy and professionalism. Then they’ll mix in two or three (free!) customer-generated visuals to boost trust and credibility.
Shoppers get the best of both worlds, while your brand offsets costs and rakes in conversions. It’s a win-win all around!
4. Photo Reviews Help Shoppers Visualize Your Products In Their Lives
Photo reviews from real customers give shoppers a better idea of your products in the real world.
Even if you list the actual dimensions of your products, there will always be shoppers who ignore or fail to grasp these numbers.
You’ll wind up with a bunch of 1-star reviews and complaints like “not true to size,” “bigger than expected,” or “smaller than the pictures.” Then you’ll not only have unhappy customers on your hands, but you’ll also breed a bit of mistrust.
Customer reviews with photos are a game-changer here.
They allow shoppers to see how clothes fit people with a similar body type, for example, or beauty products on skin tones like theirs. They might even help them better visualize the size of your products in their home or workspaces.
The more information shoppers have at their disposal, the more likely they are to purchase with confidence (and prevent buyer’s remorse).
5. Reviews with Customer Photos Can Double As Engaging Ads
In our guide on How To Use Customer Reviews in Display and Video Ads (+ Why You Should), we shared that display and video ads featuring UGC (including customer reviews) earn 4x as many click-throughs. They also cut your cost-per-click in half!
This is because ads with video and photo reviews:
- Stand out from other ads
- Come across as less salesy
- Build trust immediately
- Speak directly to your audience
- Slash time to purchase
Collect visual customer reviews, and you can use them to create:
1. Review Ads. Custom ads showcasing customer photos and videos are 35% more memorable [*].
2. Dynamic Retargeting Ads. Make ‘Smart’ retargeting ads even more compelling with customer testimonials and visuals to remind customers about relevant products.
3. Social Banners. Turn customer photos into high-performing ads that blend naturally into your shoppers’ social feeds and are optimized for success.
4. Google Shopping Product Reviews. Unleash the power of Google product ratings and reviews to help your products stand out against competitors and increase on-site conversions.
5. Dynamic Images URL. Turn your user-generated content into images for your marketing material and email campaigns that dramatically increase brand awareness, engagement, and conversions.
This reason also goes hand-in-hand with our next one:
6. Customer Photos Level Up Your Instagram Marketing
Want to increase your outreach and engagement on Instagram? This visual social media behemoth demands compelling, authentic visuals. And there’s no better source than your customer photo reviews.
Your brand can curate UGC from Instagram and turn those photos into Shoppable Galleries. Users will be able to easily buy your products directly from IG photos, shortening the pathway to purchase.
These six reasons all prove photo reviews are vital for every eCommerce business. So what’s the best way to capture them from your customers?
How To Get More Photo Reviews From Customers
Team up with the best reviews app and your eCommerce business will be rolling in customer-generated photos and videos.
Reviews & Ratings from Stamped.io allows you to efficiently collect UGC to use in all the fantastic ways we discussed today.
Once your customer makes a purchase, they’ll receive an automatic review request email. They can then complete their review and add photos or videos right in the email.
This in-email review process makes it easier and faster for your customers to share their content and feedback. And that means more customers will actually do so.
💡 See how Pastreez used customer photos to convince shoppers to order delicate macarons online (while boosting their review rate by 40%!) in this customer success story.
Want Your eCommerce Business To Be Photo Review Rich?
Customer photo reviews have so much power when you know how to leverage them. So are your photos being tapped to their full potential?
It’s time to take your business to the next level by making your customers’ photos a significant part of your brand identity.
Try a risk-free test drive of Reviews & Ratings, our top-rated review management software that uses frictionless in-mail technology, now!