Online Consumer Reviews Significantly Impact Consumer Purchasing Decisions, New Opinion...
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Online Consumer Reviews Significantly Impact Consumer Purchasing Decisions, New Opinion Research Corporation Survey Finds PRINCETON, N.J.--(Business Wire)-- Consumer reviews play a major role in the decision to purchase products or services, according to the latest survey from Opinion Research Corporation, an infoGROUP company (NASDAQ:IUSA). Nearly two-thirds (61%) of respondents reported consulting online reviews, blogs and other sources of online customer feedback before purchasing a new product or service, with search engines being the preferred method of conducting the research. A whopping eighty-three percent of respondents polled indicated that online product evaluations and reviews had at least some level of influence on their purchasing decisions. Seventy percent of respondents said they seek out information online for a particular brand of goods and services, with travel, recreation and leisure at the top of list of services most researched. Though the majority of consumers surveyed said they sought out online reviews, only 32 percent reported posting their own online feedback on product or service experiences. "Businesses today exist in an era in which it's nearly impossible to escape the likelihood of being evaluated...there's nowhere to hide," said Linda Shea, SVP and Global Managing Director of Customer Strategies for Opinion Research Corporation. "Companies must be extremely mindful of the power of proliferating online forums and their ability to shape consumer's perceptions about brands. Even a single negative review, when posted in a very public forum, can have a significant impact on a prospective buyer's decision to purchase." It is also important for providers to understand the role they can play in controlling how consumers utilize such information, and that consumer feedback can be harnessed to effectively inform decision-making processes. Shea points to Dell's innovative online forum IdeaStorm - in which customers have offered 8,600 suggestions in a year, voted on them 600,000 times, and left 64,000 comments. The company has thus far implemented at least a dozen ideas as a result. The survey also found that 38% of respondents first consult online product or service reviews when they began their shopping research and just over a quarter (27%) consult the internet when they are trying to decide between two or three products or services. Another 21% are at the narrowing down stage to confirm that they are buying the right product or service. "Providers need to insert themselves in those critical purchase decision-making stages in order to drive preference and selection for their brands," Ms. Shea said. The most researched product and service categories ranked as follows: -0- *T Travel/Recreation/Leisure 82% Electronic goods 80% Household products/services 66% Clothing 55% Automotive 55% Personal care 40% Food 24% *T The study surveyed 736 respondents on June 6-9, 2008. About Opinion Research Corporation Opinion Research Corporation, an infoGROUP company, has offered innovative solutions to the toughest market research challenges of clients worldwide since 1938. ORC's Customer Strategies practice helps clients better understand both their existing and prospective customers to establish market differentiation and drive business growth. The firm has been conducting national, speech reaction, state and flash/overnight polls for CNN since April 2006. To learn more, visit www.opinionresearch.com. About infoGROUP infoGROUP (www.infoGROUP.com) (NASDAQ: IUSA), founded in 1972, is the leading provider of business and consumer databases for sales leads & mailing lists, database marketing services, data processing services and sales and marketing solutions. Content is the essential ingredient in every marketing program, and infoGROUP has the most comprehensive data in the industry, and is the only company to own 12 proprietary databases under one roof. The infoGROUP database powers the directory services of the top Internet traffic-generating sites. Nearly 4 million customers use infoGROUP's products and services to find new customers, grow their sales, and for other direct marketing, telemarketing, customer analysis and credit reference purposes. infoGROUP headquarters are located at 5711 S. 86th Circle, Omaha, NE 68127 and can be contacted at (402) 593-4500. To know more about Sales Leads, click www.infoGROUP.com. To get a 72-hour free trial and 100 free sales leads, click www.salesgenie.com. Statements in this announcement other than historical data and information constitute forward looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those stated or implied by such forward-looking statements. The potential risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, recent changes in senior management, the successful integration of recent and future acquisitions, fluctuations in operating results, failure to successfully carry out our Internet strategy or to grow our Internet revenue, effects of leverage, changes in technology and increased competition. More information about potential factors that could affect the company's business and financial results is included in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Opinion Research Corporation Carolyn Werbler, 609-452-5258 or CJP Communications Caroline Harris, 212-279-3115 ext. 222 Copyright Business Wire 2008
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