It’s a simple law of e-commerce: the more consumer reviews there are on a product, the more sales will result. “As review numbers go up, conversions go up, and SEO traffic goes up,” says Cathy Halligan, SVP of sales and marketing for PowerReviews (and former CMO of Walmart.com). PowerReviews powers 23 million reviews across 5,500 sites including Staples.com, Gap.com, ToysRUs.com, and eFaucets, and is adding about 1 million reviews a month. But all of these reviews are siloed on each individual site. Today, PowerReviews is making it possible for brand sites to syndicate their reviews to e-commerce sites for the same products through a new product called BrandShare.
Consumers often go to brand sites to do research and leave reviews there, but most brand sites don’t actually sell their own products. PowerReviews already has a product catalog across its network of 35 million products. It will now take any reviews, whether they were written on its software, a competitor’s, or a home-grown review system and allow brands to syndicate them to existing PowerReviews customers.
For products that don’t have any reviews on a retailer’s site, this is a way to fill up those pages with reviews. Halligan says that going from zero reviews to one review with 4.2 stars or better improves conversion rates (sales) by 20 percent. And while it only takes 7 to 10 reviews to get a stable star rating, keeping reviews fresh helps with search engine optimization. Getting people directly to a product page through search thanks to an indexed review has an outsized impact on sales conversions as well.
Social sharing also helps. People can share their PowerReviews on Facebook. And each share is worth $15.72 in incremental sales.