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From Home Furnishing Business

Brandsource Offers Online Customer Review Program

Home furnishings and appliance buying group Brandsource has launched an online customer review program for its retail membership.

The program is designed to help members drive store traffic by encouraging shoppers to post online reviews about their experiences on popular search sites such as Yelp and Google. 
“No matter what industry you’re in, positive testimonials from your customers can dramatically improve online visibility,” said Bob Donaldson , vice president of digital marketing for Brandsource.
A recent study by the Pepperdine University School of Business indicates that 86 percent of consumers use online ratings and 72 percent trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
”There’s been an explosion in the number of consumers doing online research before they shop, especially for appliances, consumer electronics and home furnishings,” Donaldson said. “We want our members to be at the customer’s fingertips as soon as they begin searching.”
The Pepperdine study also revealed that three percent of new customers categorize themselves as “likely” to try a business with zero, one or two stars. Yet 80 percent said they would try a business with four stars and 84 percent indicated they would try a business with five out of five stars.
Donaldson said that when most retailers Google-search their business to see what, if any, customer reviews they have, many say that they find negative reviews. Why? Customers are predisposed to complain but not to praise, he said.
“The importance of positive reviews is extremely impactful to a dealer’s bottom line and the new Brandsource program makes it very easy for customers to instantly provide feedback.”
The new Brandsource online review program makes it easy for members to encourage satisfied customers to write a review about their store experience, beginning with an email request immediately after they exit the store. The customer can answer a short survey on their shopping, service and/or delivery experiences and post their review online at up to three review destinations of their choice (i.e., Yelp, Google and others). 
Donaldson said that for every gold star increase in rating reviews, retailers can see a revenue increase of five to nine percent. In addition, building positive reviews helps overcome any negative reviews.

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