Why UGC is a Content Marketing Best Practice

BY Rachel Cagle
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User-​generated content (UGC) is THE content marketing best practice your client should focus on in 2024 (and beyond).

Why UGC is a Content Marketing Best Practice

Quality Content Has Never Been More Important

The U.S. may be out of the danger zone of a recession. However, our cost of living is still going up. So, according to a report by Bazaarvoice, 73% of consumers are changing their spending habits in 2024. They’re:

  • Reducing non-​essential purchases: 77% of consumers agree
  • Delaying purchases where they can: 61%
  • Reducing practical purchases: 56%
  • Focusing on essential purchases: 54% of consumers won’t change these spending habits

Basically, Americans are making every single dollar count. Your client needs to convince consumers that their brand is the best way to accomplish this goal. That’s why UGC is such an important content marketing best practice for 2024.

User-​Generated Content is a Must

Consumers are aware that brands will always frame their products and services in the best light possible. So, they don’t always trust brand-​generated content that is made to generate sales. That’s where user-​generated content comes in.

According to Bazaarvoice, “consumers are shopping around more and seeking out sources of information that establish value – including UGC like ratings, reviews, photos, Q&As, and social posts.” Consumers say that UGC:

  • Gives them more confidence in a product, service or brand: 78% of consumers agree
  • Is something they rely on, especially during economic difficulties: 43%

All consumers age groups rely on UGC in some capacity, especially consumers under the age of 45. So, utilizing UGC is a content marketing best practice that will help your client reach consumers of all ages.

Where Consumers Seek Out UGC

According to Bazaarvoice, UGC that drives the most purchasing decisions is located on Product Detail Pages. Overall, 74% of consumers trust UGC more than brand-​generated content on these pages. Additionally, 55% claim that they’re unlikely to even consider making a purchase without UGC.

Remember, your client’s website and search results aren’t the only places consumers go to find this information. To truly take advantage of this content marketing best practice, your client also needs to focus on their social media presence.

Bazaarvoice says that, “Social is the new search – influencing every step of the shopper journey. An impressive 73% of 18- to 34-​year-​olds made purchases on social platforms last year, signaling a shift in how future generations will shop.”

What UGC Needs to Include

The UGC consumers are looking for includes:

  • Reviews: 78% of consumers say that these impact their purchasing decisions
  • Q&As: 77%
  • Photos of the product taken by other consumers: 69%

Overall, consumers want to see reviews. As many reviews as possible, especially high-​quality reviews, including average star ratings and a ton of details is best.

Why? Consumers are hoping that UGC will help them determine whether or not:

  • They’ll get the value they expect for the money they’ll be spending
  • The product is made from quality materials
  • The product will actually match its brand-​generated description and pictures
  • It’s actually the size it’s supposed to be

Need a better idea of what types of content your client’s target customers are looking for and what they should focus on? Check out the audience’s profile on AudienceSCAN on AdMall by SalesFuel.

UGC’s Impact on Sales

Of course, no supposed content marketing best practice can claim to be so without sales-​related evidence. Don’t worry, Bazaarvoice took care of that too. Let’s discuss per UGC type.

  • When online shoppers interact with UGC, conversion rates shoot up by 144%. Revenue per visitor and average order value also increase by 162% and 13%, respectively.
  • UGC Q&As increase conversion rates by 127%, revenue per visitor by 145% and average order value by 10%.
  • On-​site photo galleries perform the best.
  • Increases across conversion rates (145%), revenue per visitor (190%) and average order value (22%).

Enough said. Let your client know how much better their content could be performing with this content marketing best practice.

Photo by: Usman Yousaf