Yesterday eMarketer.com has published some additional statistics we should know about. While word-of-mouth recommendations still move the end users to purchase online, “word-of-blog” reviews are actually considerably less effective. Quoting Mintel’s recent study on the subject, eMarketer writes that “34% of US Internet users who bought a product or service based on a recommendation got that tip from a friend or relative” and “one-quarter bought based on advice from a spouse or domestic partner”. Blogs are on the list too, but way down that list. Here’s the actual chart:
Trustworthiness of a blog review is directly tied to the trustworthiness of the reviewer. Hence, when affiliates do use product or service reviews in their blogs they better be real reviews. Merchants, on the other hand, should start using “recommend to friend” buttons more aggressively. Just look at the stunning stats above.