User-generated content (UGC) was widely predicted to explode in popularity in 2016, and the forecasts weren’t wrong! You only have to visit your favourite online retailer’s website to spot signs of UGC. It’s everywhere. But how useful is it? Should you incorporate it into your e-commerce site? Can it really help to boost conversions? Keep reading and we’ll reveal all.

What is user generated content?

It’s pretty self-explanatory. User-generated content is simply content (think photos, videos and reviews), that has been created and submitted by unpaid contributors.

Why should you use user generated content?

When it comes to influencing purchasing decisions, the stats for UGC are staggering. Take reviews for example. When it comes to e-commerce, they are essential. Why? The stats speak for themselves:

  • 61% of customers check online reviews prior to making a purchasing decision.
  • 63% of customers are more likely to make a purchase from a site with user reviews.
  • 71% of consumers agree that reviews make them more confident in a purchase.

Shoppers are increasingly sceptical of professional marketing tactics and instead turn to UGC to gauge the effectiveness of the products or services they are considering buying.

  • 92% of consumers trust recommendations from others (even people they don’t know), over branded content.
  • 82% of customers report that UGC is valuable to them when making an important purchasing decision.
  • 86% of millennials say that user-generated content is a reliable indicator of the quality of a brand or service.

As you can see, UGC packs a powerful punch. Essentially, consumers are looking for engaging, inspirational and trustworthy branded content online, and UGC ticks all of the boxes.

Here are three examples of clever UGC strategies that some big brands have used to increase their e-commerce conversion rates and improve brand awareness.

1. Three – Create Your Own Pony

Everyone remembers the dancing pony from Three’s infamous advert. Bet you didn’t know that 65% of the UK was exposed to the ad at least once and the ‘create your own pony’ campaign the company launched lead to 1.5 million ponies being created online. That’s a lot of UGC!

2. Lush – Reviews


Like many retailers, Lush allows users to post reviews and star ratings for each of their products on its website. Why? Reviews are an invaluable asset to both e-commerce stores and their customers. They give shoppers an opportunity to evaluate and validate their potential purchases by providing them with social proof and also help to alleviate online purchasing fears and promote trust in a brand. What’s not to like?

3. Sephora – Beauty Board

Real people, real products, real results. In the creation of their innovative Beauty Board, cosmetics chain Sephora is able to promote thousands of their products via integrated images submitted by their shoppers. Like a makeup look? Images are linked directly with the purchasable products on Sephora’s site. Not only is Sephora building trust and a powerful, highly active community online, they are also improving brand awareness and engagement in a meaningful way that’s valuable to both them and their customers. That’s a winning combination!


Want to make the most of UGC on your website? We can help!

Bing Digital was created by creative people, for creative people. If you are searching for ways to boost conversions and engage your customers, why not let our award-winning team help you? We offer a range of digital marketing, brand development and e-commerce solutions for businesses across the UK. Get in touch today and let us know how we can help you.

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