According to a new survey, Amazon remains the most popular starting point for online shoppers. However, one exception is Gen Z, who prefer to use Google instead, with 38% starting their shopping journey on Google versus 36% on Amazon. Additionally, 5% of Gen Z start their shopping journey on social media.
This survey underscores the continued importance of being visible on any relevant platforms at moments when shoppers are researching and purchasing products. For instance, 77% of respondents stated that they specifically seek out websites with reviews, with this number rising to 87% for Gen Z and 81% for millennials. Reviews and ratings can make or break a sale more than any other factor, including product price, free shipping, returns, and exchanges. In fact, 56% of survey respondents consider ratings without accompanying reviews to be untrustworthy.
Where people read reviews and ratings is also important to note. Unsurprisingly, Amazon remains the top platform at 94%, followed by retail websites at 91%. Search engines are the third most common platform, with 70% of respondents stating they read reviews and ratings on search engines. User-generated photos and videos also gain value, with 60% of consumers looking at user-generated content when learning about new products. Interestingly, 53% of respondents said user-generated photos and videos from previous customers impacted their decision whether to purchase a product.
When it comes to Google and search engines, 56% of consumers consider search results when making purchase decisions. Additionally, 63% of respondents use search engine results to learn about products they haven’t purchased before, and 50% trust search engine results when making a purchase decision.
The survey, conducted by PowerReviews, surveyed 8,153 U.S. consumers in March 2023. It skewed heavily towards millennials, who made up 53% of respondents, followed by Gen X (29%), Baby Boomers (10%), and Gen Z (8%). In conclusion, Amazon remains the go-to product search engine for consumers, and ratings and reviews are king.
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Source: PowerReviews: Survey – The Ever-Growing Power of Reviews (2023 Edition)