New AI Technology and Research from Chatmeter Confirms Brands Build Consumer Trust with Reviews

May 02, 2017

Chatmeter, a search marketing and review management company, revealed new research proving the trustworthiness of online reviews and the impact they have on consumers’ trust in a brand. For National Honesty Day (April 30th), these findings combined with the launch of Chatmeter Pulse, a sentiment analysis engine, to help businesses understand first-hand what their customers are experiencing and how they make actionable decisions on where to improve the customer experience, products, marketing messaging, and operations.

Chatmeter further examined if fake reviews are a real issue, or just the latest in fake news. There are plenty of headlines and even some lawsuits around fake review ramifications. However, when it comes to online reviews, Chatmeter’s latest research proves it’s not an epidemic as the majority (53%) of consumers rarely, or never, see a fake review. Not only are 80.7% of consumers using online reviews to influence their purchase decisions, they are more skeptical of what constitutes an honest review, which may help or hinder trust in a company.

What’s telling from this data, are the kinds of reviews consumers believe are most trustworthy and factors which impact trust of a brand:

  • Seeing Stars – The majority of respondents say a star rating of a location is the biggest contributor to trust in a particular store, with 4 stars driving the most trust (41.8%).
  • Quantity and Sentiment – Next to a star rating, the quantity and sentiment of reviews represented key factors which contribute to trust in an online review of a company or store.
  • Millennial Trust Issues – Respondents ages 18-34 are more trusting of a brand that has 100+ reviews, while ages 45-54 are trusting of a brand with just 1 review.
  • Just Google It – In 2016, mobile ad spend jumped 77% to $36.6 billion; but how valuable are these ads if customers can’t find local, positively-ranked store locations? Underscoring the valuable connection between online reviews and local SEO, 51.6% of respondents report they turn to reviews on Google the most, followed by 32.3% who prefer Facebook.