Visual content (e.g., photos and videos) has become an expected part of the path to purchase for consumers. Visual information can play a big role in building trust and influencing customer behavior. Here are five tips for brands and retailers looking to better attract and convert shoppers by leveraging user-generated visual content:
1. Request photos and videos from customers. Consumers are looking for product photos and videos from other consumers. Start asking your customers to submit photos and videos as part of their reviews. Be sure to make it easy for customers to upload photos and videos directly from their phones, where much of this content is captured.
2. Capture visual content natively. Streamline the process for collecting visual content from your customers. Rather than requiring them to take the extra step of first uploading content to a third-party service such as YouTube or asking your internal teams to curate visual content by combing through millions of photos on social media sites, allow customers to natively submit their photos and videos via your website.
3. Prominently display user-submitted visual content. Two-fifths of shoppers prefer to see visual content directly on a brand or retailer site. Prominently feature user-generated content on your product pages, rather than hiding it behind tabs or requiring visitors to click around to find what they’re looking for. That way, you’ll provide shoppers with all of the information they’re looking for in one place, decreasing your risk that they’ll leave your website and purchase elsewhere.
4. Keep your visual content authentic. Consumers value visual content submitted by other consumers because of its authenticity. While it’s key to maintain authenticity by not altering photos, it’s also important to have measures in place to ensure no inappropriate or fraudulent content makes its way onto your site. Otherwise, you can have images that tarnish the trust you’ve worked hard to build for your brand.
5. Leverage user-generated photos in other marketing initiatives. In addition to prominently featuring user-generated images and videos on product pages, think about ways you can leverage this content on other areas of your website, including your homepage, category pages and campaign-specific landing pages. Also, consider integrating this visual content into other print and digital marketing initiatives such as email, social and display campaigns.
Matt Moog is the CEO of PowerReviews, a company that collects and displays customer ratings and reviews to drive traffic and increase sales.