Benchmarks based on existing Ratings and Reviews data from brands selling on Walmart.com.

Walmart is a commerce giant whichever way you slice it – and Walmart.com is an absolutely critical sales channel for many brands. So standing out when competition is so severe is a huge challenge.

Your review footprint on Walmart.com – therefore – can be the difference between winning and losing. We analyzed more than 1M product reviews from 550+ brands on Walmart.com to outline the specific benchmarks you need to know.

Check out the ungated report to find out:

(No form fill required!)

Over the past few years, an unprecedented number of consumers have switched brands or retailers, and nearly 80% of consumers plan to continue exploring their options moving forward.

With customer loyalty at an all-time low, competition is steeper than ever. To thrive in today’s crowded ecommerce environment, brands must have a deep understanding of their target customer, and how well they are meeting their needs.

Fortunately, reviews – when analyzed in the appropriate manner – contain a lot of the information you need to understand and improve your products. Here are the seven top insights you can glean:

1. Discover how customers feel about your products

Let’s start with the most obvious benefit: understanding how your customers feel about your products. You can see the top words and phrases customers use when describing your product, and the associated sentiment. This information is crucial for understanding the voice of your consumer (which has applications throughout your marketing efforts). It can also help you discover the quirks of your products that create positive sentiment. 

For example, we can see that adjectives like comfortable and versatile are highly associated with positive sentiment for this hypothetical shoe. While words like durable and casual also tend to have positive sentiment, those words also appear in reviews with negative sentiment — suggesting perhaps that consumers may disagree on whether the shoe really is durable, or some may view the casual style as a positive while others view it as a negative.

product pulse insights on sneakers

2. Hone in on the right keywords for SEO and Google advertising

Knowing the words your consumers use can also help you reach them more effectively in the search results. Are you targeting the right keywords in Google Ads, based on how your customers search for products like yours? Does your product description tell the best story for SEO? Product Sentiment Analytics can help you find out. 

In the example below, we see that customers positively refer to a product as a dog treat, chew, supplement and vitamin, even though the product itself may be described as a supplement. By adding those additional descriptors into the product description — and targeting them in Google Ads — the brand can reach more potential customers.

3. Highlight the products and features your customers like most

In addition to boosting your SEO efforts, review content can point you toward key features you should highlight throughout your marketing. 

For example, take the review below. If phrases like “arch support” and “treadmill” frequently show up in rave reviews for a pair of shoes, it may be worth incorporating those benefits in your marketing for that product, such as showing a person running on a treadmill in a Facebook post or a YouTube ad.

Need more inspiration for how to promote a particular feature customers love about your products? Our Product Sentiment Analytics tool lets you dig even deeper. In the example below, customers generally speak positively about the product’s material.

By clicking on the word material, you can see the top descriptors associated with that word. This product has a flattering fit and makes people feel great and beautiful. Those are great points to include in your product description and marketing!

4. Use top descriptors to focus on your next product innovation

Reviews can be treasure troves of product feedback. Mine them, and you’ll find ideas to spark your next product enhancement. 

Going back to our dog treats example, it looks like some consumers have issues with the color and the powdery texture. Those are two insights you can take back to the product development team to see if version 2.0 of the dog treats can better meet your customers’ needs.

5. Identify and resolve issues before they get worse

Speaking of customer complaints, negative sentiment can be a veritable “canary in the coal mine” for your brand. A good start: tracking changes in sentiment over time. If you notice dips in sentiment or an increase in negative sentiment, look into it. Did something change with your manufacturing process? 

Are sales for an item lower than expected? It’s possible your customers found a flaw that needs to be addressed. Take a look at the top descriptors associated with negative sentiment to hone in on the issue.

By the same token, you can also use this report to see if sentiment improves after you’ve implemented a product improvement.

6. Launch new products with success

There’s always a bit of guesswork involved when it comes to marketing a new product. Sure, it’s educated guesswork, likely based on user research or what you know works for similar products. But still, you don’t know 100% how a new product will resonate with consumers.

Sampling campaigns are a commonly used tactic to boost review volumes and gain consumer buy-in to new products. Measuring the sentiment of these reviews enables you to adjust your go-to-market strategy to make the subsequent launch more successful, answering questions like:

  • What are our customers’ favorite features about this product?
  • What words and phrases should we use when talking about this product?
  • Are there any issues we should fix before launching the product nationwide?

7. Compare sentiment across products, categories, and brands

Also use review data to compare and contrast customer sentiment across your various brands, categories, and products. 

Let’s say your company sells tires. Your newest tire, Product D, seems to be struggling but you’re not sure why. So, you compare it against three of your best-selling tires. In your Product Sentiment Analytics, you notice that Product D has more negative sentiment around experience than your other tire products.

This may signal an area where you may need to make a change. You can investigate further to see whether the reviews that mention a negative experience with Product D are talking about your customer service, the installation experience, or an experience driving out on the road — and make improvements accordingly. 

Improve product performance with Product Sentiment Analytics

Think this insight might be helpful? Product Sentiment Analytics can help you tap into the voice of your customers, optimize your product marketing strategy, and make product improvements that benefit not only your ratings and reviews program, but your bottom line.

If you’re a current PowerReviews customer, great news: you can access all of these metrics in your reporting for free. Not yet a PowerReviews customer? Learn how we can help you do more with UGC.

Savannah Claspell

Savannah is an Enterprise Customer Success Manager, passionate about using data and analytics to empower brands to grow their business. When she isn’t helping brands increase and leverage their UGC you can find her deep in a good book, running, or mountainside skiing.

Ratings and reviews are a key indicator of how consumers feel about your brand and your product. They also have a huge impact on conversion, with shoppers who interact with ratings and reviews converting at more than double the rate of those who don’t. 

In addition to boosting conversions, user-generated content (UGC) also increases web traffic volumes you drive to your product pages. Our research shows that product detail pages (PDPs) with no reviews account for 60% of all PDPs across the Internet. But these pages only capture 12% of all web traffic. By contrast, PDPs with more than 100 reviews account for 5% of all PDPs. But these pages capture 33% of web traffic.

Factors like review volumes and average rating of course improve traffic volumes. But – in addition – there are some incredibly meaningful nuggets of information you can extract from your review content to further boost SEO and – in turn – eyeballs on your product pages.

Beyond these immediate benefits, analyzing your UGC can also yield valuable insights into how to improve your SEO even further. Insights like:

  • What keywords are we missing from our product pages?
  • How do we add more keyword-rich content to our product pages?
  • How do we improve our rankings on other retailers, like Amazon?

Having the answers to these questions — and taking action on them — can make a huge difference in how you show up in the search engines, and how many shoppers you convert. Fortunately, you can find these answers easily with UGC analytics, so long as you know what to look for. 

Read on as we share seven UGC metrics to watch to improve your web presence, both on your own website and that of your retail partners.

1. Top Review Search Terms

The Review Search Report reveals the most popular search terms consumers are entering into the search box on your Review Display.

These search terms represent key details that shoppers want to know — some of which may currently be missing from your product description. Adding this information to your product display pages can help shoppers find the information they’re looking for faster. These search terms may spark ideas for product improvement as well.

Regularly review the top search terms and ensure you’re addressing these keywords throughout your product display page to improve your rankings in Google

2. Products With Zero or Few Reviews

These are products with either no reviews or a low review count.

Adding just one review to a product page with zero reviews can lift conversion by 52.2%. Increase that to more than ten reviews, and the conversion rate lifts by 102.9%. Plus - as we already outlined above -  Google searchers are considerably less likely to click on a search result that has zero reviews. Pages that have zero or few reviews not only have a tougher time converting customers, but ranking well in Google and catching shopper attention on retailer sites.

Products with zero or few reviews are prime candidates for a dedicated review generation initiative.

3. Review Coverage

Review coverage describes how many of your product pages have at least 1 review. The closer this is to 100%, the better.

80% of consumers say they’re less likely to buy a given product if it has no reviews. The amount of content on a product page can heavily influence not only the trust a customer has in the product and their likelihood to convert, but also the search engine ranking of the page.

Generate new reviews consistently with a post-purchase email campaigns. As new reviews come in, keep an eye on the top search terms to see what words you can add to your page to grab Google’s attention.

4. Review Sentiment

Sentiment describes how consumers feel about your products, be it positive or negative.

By diving into review sentiment analysis, you can gain insights into what's most important to your customers, and what they love or hate about your products. With that information on hand, you can take action to improve sentiment, conversions, and more. 

Consider how people talk about your product to determine the language you should include in product descriptions. For example, features associated with positive sentiment may deserve a more prominent spot in your product description and highlights. On the flip side, if shoppers frequently complain about a particular feature, that may be an opportunity for a product improvement.

5. Q&A Coverage

Q&A coverage describes the amount of Questions & Answers content you have across your site and on each of your product pages.

With a stunning 194.2% lift in conversion among visitors who interact with it, Q&A is the most powerful form of UGC. Q&A can answer questions that aren’t covered in your product description, or that perhaps you didn’t realize your customers were asking. Plus, more Q&A means more keyword-rich content for Google on your product pages, which can help boost your visibility in the search engines.

Users aren’t the only people who can submit Q&A; brands can, too. Launch all new products with at least a few seed questions to fill out this space, encourage interaction, and provide more content to Google.

6. Syndication Performance

Syndication performance provides an overview of the review content you share to your retail partners, and the impact those syndicated reviews have on specific partners’ websites. 

Syndicating your reviews helps to lift conversions for your products on retail partner websites. It also improves the rankings of those product pages in the search results, improving overall visibility for your brand.

By reviewing your syndication performance, you can see which partners are struggling with review coverage, and spin up a dedicated sampling or sweepstakes campaign to generate more reviews for that partner.

7. Share to Amazon Report

At PowerReviews, shoppers can publish the reviews they submit to your site to Amazon with the click of a button. This report shows key metrics related to your Amazon reviews, including the total number of Amazon reviews for your products and the percentage of reviews shared from your site to Amazon, so you can understand how many customers are using this feature.

Taking a look at the Review Length and Review details within the report can show you the quality of reviews you collect on your own site versus organically on Amazon. Review length is something consumers care about, with nearly 70% regularly seeking out longer, more detailed reviews.

If your Amazon reviews tend to be shorter than the ones collected on your own website, enabling the Share to Amazon feature can improve your presence on Amazon. 

Improve your web presence with UGC analytics

Analyzing your UGC can not only improve your native review collection, but also lead to improved rankings in the search engines — and the increased traffic and conversions that come along with it. Improve your brand presence, both on and off your website, with UGC analytics.

If you’re a current PowerReviews customer, great news: you can access all of these metrics in your reporting for free. Not yet a PowerReviews customer? Learn how we can help you do more with UGC.

Anna Van Orman

Anna is a Corporate Customer Success Manager who enjoys working with her clients to help them collect and utilize quality User Generated Content and grow their brands. Outside of work she likes to spend time with her dog Ranch, and enjoy exploring Chicago.

There’s a saying that change is the only constant in life. It may be cliche. But it rings true, especially for brands and retailers.

Styles change. Technology evolves. Customers’ needs, values, priorities, and expectations are always in flux. It can be hard to keep up! 

Brands and retailers must constantly innovate to keep pace with these changes and continue to meet consumers’ ever-evolving needs and expectations. One key way brands and retailers innovate is by releasing new product offerings on a regular basis. According to Clayton Christensen, former Harvard Business School professor, 30,000 new consumer products are launched each year. 

But developing a great product doesn’t guarantee it’ll fly off the shelves and be wildly successful. Per that same professor, up to 95% of new products fail.

Pretty disheartening, huh? But it’s not all gloom and doom for brands and retailers. We promise.

Of course, there are myriad factors that contribute to the success (or failure) of a new product. Some of those factors are out of your control. But a lot of others are in your control. 

In fact, we have identified four key best practices for launching any new product. These are intended to provide you with the focus necessary to drive meaningful impact. By adopting these proven practices, you’ll set yourself up for the most successful product launch possible.

Best Practice #1: Collect Reviews with Product Sampling

Research tells us nearly all consumers read reviews at least sometimes when shopping online. And 57% do so when shopping in brick-and-mortar stores. 

Sure, a consumer may be less likely to check reviews when purchasing habitual products, such as their go-to toothpaste, cereal or mascara. But if they’re considering a new product, they’ll seek out reviews. And if they come up short, they’re likely to pass. A recent survey found that 80% of consumers are less likely to purchase a product if it doesn’t have any reviews. 92% of Gen Z shoppers say this is the case.

And the interaction numbers back this up. A solid review footprint = more traffic to your product pages and higher conversion rates among that traffic.

As such, it’s essential to launch new products with reviews already in place. But how can you get reviews for products you haven’t yet launched? Through product sampling.

How Product Sampling Works

Product sampling involves sending out free samples of a product, and then asking for reviews from those who received a sample. The reviews are then displayed on your product page when you launch your new product. 

Product sampling is a great option if you’re launching a new product on your own direct-to-consumer site.

However, you should also consider product sampling if you’re launching a new product that’ll be available on a retailer’s site.

Retailer-only campaigns work similarly. But instead of displaying reviews on your own dot com, the content is displayed on your retail partners’ sites – boosting shopper confidence there. 

Product Sampling Works Across all Product Categories

Product sampling is really simple – especially if you work with the right sampling partner. But it’s also a really effective way to collect a large volume of high quality content – fast. 

At PowerReviews, we see an average submission rate of 85% on our product sampling campaigns. That means you can expect to generate about 8.5 reviews for every 10 products you send. Some of our customers have even higher submission rates.

And the reviews that result from the campaign are high quality. In fact, reviews that result from PowerReviews sampling campaigns are an average of 29% longer than those generated from other sampling programs. 

When you hear the phrase “product sampling,” you might think of low cost consumer packaged goods, like toothpaste or shampoo. But the reality is, product sampling can be effective across a wide range of product categories.

Here at PowerReviews, we’ve planned and executed pre-launch product sampling campaigns for products ranging from makeup and sparkling water to strollers and mattresses – and everything in between. 

Time Your Product Sampling Campaign Right

It’s important to time your sampling campaign right. A best practice is to launch your sampling campaign at least 10 weeks ahead of your planned product launch. That way, you have enough time to identify your sampling audience, send out samples, and request reviews. Again, the right sampling partner will do all the heavy lifting for you. 

Once your campaign has wrapped, you’ll have plenty of reviews to display on your product page on the day you launch your new product. This content will boost shoppers’ confidence – and increase their likelihood of giving your new product a try.

Collect Visual Content, Too

Chances are, you’ve taken beautiful photos and videos that showcase your new product in the best light. This content is important; but increasingly, consumers want to see photos and videos from others like them. 

A survey found that over three-quarters (77%) of consumers always or regularly look for visual content from other shoppers who have purchased a product. And a third of Gen Z shoppers won’t buy a product if there are no user-generated photos or videos available for it. 

If user-generated visual content is important to you (and it should be), consider collecting it as part of your product sampling campaign. Those who sampled your new offering should be able to easily upload a photo or video of the product in action right from the review submission form. 

Analyze Review Data to Enhance Products

A key benefit of product sampling is that it allows you to display a high volume of quality reviews as soon as you launch the product. This content increases the likelihood a consumer will purchase your new product.

But another benefit is that reviews generated during a pre-launch product sampling campaign provide you with a ton of data. You’ll get rich insight into what consumers love about your new product – and things that aren’t so great. Then, you can share these insights with your product teams to fuel product enhancements – either before launching the product or later on down the road. 

Best Practice #2: Perfect Your PDPs

A consumer’s path to purchase might start from any number of places. Perhaps they’re actively searching for a solution to a need – and start the search on Google. Or maybe a social media ad catches their eye while mindlessly scrolling.

Getting the shopper to click through is the first step. Now, the next challenge is to get them to convert. 

The product details page (PDP) for your new product can either make or break the sale. So it’s important to get it right.

A Mobile-First Design

According to Oberlo, more than half (53.74% to be exact) of web visits are from a mobile device. What’s more, per Insider Intelligence, mobile commerce (aka mcommerce) is expected to account for more than 44% of total retail ecommerce sales in the US by 2025. 

It’s imperative to ensure mobile shoppers have a great experience on your product pages and can easily find and consume all the information they need to make an informed purchase decision. If your PDPs aren’t mobile-first, you’re going to lose customers. 

Comprehensive Product Information

Online shoppers don’t have the luxury of seeing and touching a product prior to purchase. Instead, they rely on the product information on a PDP to fill the gaps. 

Be sure the PDP for your new product features plenty of product details, including:

In addition, be sure this information is organized in a way that’s easy for shoppers to consume.

A Winning Review Display

Reviews have become the most important factor when consumers are making purchase decisions. So it’s really important to showcase this content on the PDPs of your newly launched products. 

For starters, feature the average star rating and number of reviews “above the fold” on your PDPs. 77% of consumers consider the average star rating when reading reviews, and 75% consider the quantity. Seeing this content front and center will entice more shoppers to explore your new product.

However, it’s important to remember that 88% of shoppers always or regularly look beyond basic summary information to read the actual content of reviews. But they don’t want to read through every single review that’s available. Instead, they want to quickly hone in on the content that’s most relevant to them.

Make sure visitors to your PDPs can easily sort and filter reviews by factors including recency, star rating, helpfulness, and inclusion of visual content. In addition, be sure those reading reviews can filter content by specific factors that make sense for your brand. 

For example, if you’re a beauty brand, it makes sense to allow consumers to filter reviews by factors including skin type, skin concern, and age. If you’re an apparel brand, filtering options such as height and weight make sense. You can capture this information directly within the review submission form.

Finally, consumers value reviews because this content is written by others like them. So be sure to disclose who wrote reviews. For example, remember those reviews you generated from your pre-launch sampling campaign? Be sure to add a badge so future shoppers can easily see when a reviewer received a free sample. 

In addition, add a “verified shopper” badge when you know the reviewer bought the product in question. Research tells us 69% of shoppers say such a badge positively impacts how they perceive that review. 

Best Practice #3: Leverage Email Marketing as a Core Channel

There are plenty of tools out there that promise to get your products in front of more consumers in more places. But email remains one of the most effective.

According to HubSpot research, 77% of marketing pros have seen an increase in email engagement over the past year. What’s more, the ROI of email remains high. Per Litmus, marketers see a $36 return for every $1 spent on email marketing. 

Spread the Word with Email Campaigns

Plan and develop email campaigns to get the word out about your new product. Our own research found 36% of consumers are more likely to click through a marketing email if there’s information about a newly launched product. 

In addition, consider incorporating star ratings and excerpts from reviews you generated in your sampling campaigns into your email campaigns. Why? Because the presence of positive ratings and reviews in marketing emails increases the likelihood of click through for almost half (46%) of shoppers. 

Here’s a look at some other components that can help increase clickthrough in your email campaigns. 

Email Marketing Components That Increase Click Through
When you receive a MARKETING EMAIL from a brand or retailer, which of the following increases the likelihood that you will click through?
Price discounts or sales promotions
85%
Products that jump out to you
49%
Positive ratings and reviews
46%
Newly launched products
36%
Compelling images or videos of the product
30%
The brand promoted
22%
Celebrity or influencer endorsements
6%

Give Loyal Customers a First Look

Blanketing your entire email list with the same, generic  promotional email isn’t effective. Instead, segment appropriately. 

For example, make a list of your loyalty program members and frequent shoppers. These are the folks who should be the first to know about your new product. Send a targeted email that lets them know they’re seeing the product before everyone else. This feeling of exclusivity will entice them to learn more and ideally, convert. 

As an added bonus, those who get an early look at your new product are more likely to write a review after they’ve made a purchase. Our research on reviewer motives found that 85% of consumers are more likely to submit a review if they received a product before it’s sold to the general public. 

Best Practice #4: Promote on Social

These days, just about anyone with a mobile phone uses social media. According to the Pew Research Center, about seven in ten Americans use some kind of social media site. 

Consumers use social media to keep up with family and friends. But they also turn to social media sites like Instagram to get inspired and discover new products. A Statista study found that 77% of social media users indicate these channels help them get ideas about brands and products they’d never thought about before. And 71% say social media has inspired them to shop, even when they weren’t looking to do so. 

Clearly, social media is an important channel to incorporate into your product launch plan. 

Promote Your Product through Organic and Paid Posts and Stories

Be sure to promote your new products via your own social media channels. For example, create organic posts and stories on Instagram announcing the new product. Or, run paid promotions to increase your reach. Our research found that 34% of consumers are more likely to click on a social media post or ad from a brand or retailer if it has information about a newly launched product.

Incorporating star ratings and review excerpts for your new product can also catch the attention of more social media users. 47% of consumers say the presence of positive ratings and reviews in social media posts or ads increase their likelihood of clicking through.

Tap Into Influencers

Leveraging influencers can be a great way to get your new product in front of new audiences on social media. If there are influencers you already work with, send them samples of your new offering – and ask them to spread the word among their followers. 

In addition, encourage your happy customers to share photos and videos on Instagram by tagging your brand and using your hashtag. Again, this extends your reach.

What’s more, you can curate this visual content from social media – and then display it on your own product pages.

Go Forth and Launch Your New Product

Consumers may love your brand’s offerings today. But their preferences and expectations are constantly evolving. You’ve got to continuously innovate to keep up. One key way to do that is to develop and launch new products on a regular basis.

Creating a great product is the first step. But it doesn’t guarantee success. By following the four, proven best practices in this guide, you’ll set yourself up for a successful product launch.

USAUK