The Two Kinds of Reviews That
Determine Who You Buy From Online:
As an online shopper, you probably weren’t aware that there are two different kinds of merchant reviews collected online that are affecting your buying decisions - they are called ‘Passive’ reviews and ‘Active’ reviews. As a online shopper, it’s very important that you know the difference.
are reviews that can be submitted by anyone; many times, without confirmation of a purchase or verified use of a product, service, or even the company. An individual posting a Passive review also doesn’t have to publicly display who they are, so it’s much easier for an angry customer to leave negative reviews about a business with little consequence to their image, but potentially fatal consequences to the business they’re reviewing.
on the other hand, are reviews that a business actively collects from ALL of its customers equally using a trusted 3rd party review service. Not only do Active reviews verify that the reviewer has actually made a purchase from the company, but they invite ALL paying customers to share their feedback and experiences, whether good or bad. In addition, ALL reviews are publicly posted for new potential customers to read.
So why does this matter?
This truly matters to you as a consumer, because you make important buying decisions based on the reviews you read online. The problem is, unless you know the difference, you could be making buying decisions based on really bad information.
Here are two things to remember when looking at merchant reviews online:
Passive Reviews are almost always negatively skewed
As consumers, how often do we go out of our way to leave a positive review after a good experience? Not often. But, how often do we go out of our way to leave a bad review after a bad experience? It’s in our nature to share our bad experiences with anyone that cares to listen, and the Internet seems to care.
Passive reviews are a great way to vent our anger about a company to the world. The problem is that because Passive reviews aren’t collected from everyone equally, then the reviews being displayed don’t provide an accurate view of the company.
Active Reviews provide the most accurate picture of a company’s real reputation
It’s just not possible for a company to be perfect, but can a company that does hundreds or even thousands of orders a day with only 5 Passive reviews and a 1.4 star-rating accurately be perceived as an awful company?
This is typically the case when Passive reviews are collected. However, when Active reviews are collected, the average star-rating tends to be much higher and a lot more accurate, because all customers are equally invited to share their experience.
Shopper Approved is one of the few rating companies in the world that only collects Active reviews. From a moral standpoint, it’s the only option, because when it comes down to it, Passive reviews just don’t give the full picture of a company’s true reputation and the experience they provide to the majority of their customers.
What can you do to make better buying decisions?
If you’re a consumer,
When looking at reviews online, keep these tips in mind:
- Look for companies with a large number of ratings and reviews, from a trusted 3rd party review source like Shopper Approved. These are most likely Active reviews and provide the most accurate picture of the company.
- If the company has a small number of ratings that are mostly negative, then they are likely Passive reviews and provide the least accurate picture of the company.
If you’re an online business owner,
Make sure that your company is collecting Active reviews in order to give potential customers the most accurate, honest representation of your company. If you don’t give your customers a way to give you feedback on their purchase, then they will go look for Passive review sites to share their concerns and frustrations when they have a bad experience. It’s much better to provide them with the proper tools and options that they need to properly resolve their issues when one happens to arise.
I wanted to purchase a gift card in an amount not available on the website. Also since the only option for sending is electronic, I would expect it to be able to send directly to the recipient. It’s awkward to send a gift card as a forwarded email.