Reviews are insights into a particular service, product, organization, business, or company. These are experiences, opinions, and thoughts that are shared by former consumers or employees who have had experience with the product/service in question. The aim of reviews is so that potential consumers or employees would have a glimpse into what to expect.
It’s however important to keep in mind that not all reviews are authentic as some may have been constructed with malicious intent. This means it’s important to analyze the platform where the reviews are posted. Nonetheless, authentic reviews from real users can help you big time in choosing a product or service that will address your specific needs.
With that said, let’s take a look at how reading reviews can help you to form an educated decision.
1. Gain An Insider’s Perspective
Reading reviews may help you get an insider’s perspective who had a first-hand experience regarding a service or product. For example, a Vendasta review, an in-depth insight review of a company that sells software for digital marketing, was done by the company’s former marketing head—which means that anyone who reads it would get a genuine insider’s perspective from someone who used to work with the said company.
Such a detailed review helps the reader understand various facets and perspectives of the product/service rather than leave the reader with unanswered questions. You can tell a lot about the authenticity of a review or the lack thereof, by the amount of information that is provided by the author.
2. Know The Advantages and Disadvantages
Quality reviews will state the advantages and disadvantages of a service product, without any biases. Stating both sides help you to decide for yourself whether it’s a service product that is worth trying out. If a review is largely one-sided, it runs the risk of subjectively presenting a partial perspective based on motives, which leaves a reader questioning its credibility.
A review that also shares who benefits from the particular service product and those who don’t also fall under authentic reviews; it also shows you both sides of the coin. Having read and analyzed the review, you are then able to place yourself in either the group that benefits from the service product or not as well as whether the service product will be of an advantage or disadvantage to you.
3. Ascertain Brand Reputation
The reputation of a brand is equally as important as the service product that the brand provides. Online reviews can give insight into the brand’s work ethic, goals, and aims. If the brand doesn’t align with your beliefs and perceptions, you can decide whether you are willing to form a consumer relationship with the brand.
For example, reviews can show that the brand isn’t very much concerned about the environment because it doesn’t make use of sustainable business practices such as using plastic-free packaging. If you are passionate about sustainability, you already have the information you need to make an educated decision.
4. Make Service Product Comparisons
Reviews allow you to make comparisons across brands and service products. Through them, you’re able to take note of the positive and negative perceptions and experiences of previous users and compare a product/service with competitors. The similarities and differences that you may find can help you make an educated decision.
5. Reviews Prompt Research
There are instances where you want to purchase a product or service but aren’t quite sure where to begin regarding researching the product. For example, products that are related to the software may entail having to research complex terminology in order to understand exactly what you’re about to purchase. Without knowing about such terms and dynamics, you won’t know where to initially find information regarding the service product.
Although quality reviews are detailed and provide explanations of the terms and dynamics of service products, these may also prompt you in the direction of what you may wish to research. Taking the information you need from the reviews to carry out research outside the review will help you make an educated decision.
6. Initiated Conversation
You can come across a review that has the contact information of the company or the reviewer. This means that conversation can easily be initiated regarding the discussed service product. If you have any queries or need more clarity regarding the service product, reaching out through contact forms, email, or live chat may help. This interaction may give more information compared to written material. Having discussed the content of the review, you are then in a better place to make an educated decision.
7. Service and Product Awareness
As you read a review or explore the website, you may get to know about other services and products that you weren’t aware of. You may discover that the service or product you were reviewing works better together with other products, or that there are better variations of the product that would suit your needs better.
8. How to Analyze Reviews
Here are some tips on how to spot authentic from inauthentic reviews;
- Read reviews from recommended and verified sites
- If a review is largely negative or positive, it may be biased
- Analyze the reviewing panel or author/s based on their bio. The more you know about the reviewer, the more you’ll gauge the authenticity
- Check for accurate spelling and grammar
- Lack of relevant detail shows minimum knowledge of the subject
- Check ratings or how many consumers found the information helpful
- Analyze comments from consumers about the review if possible
- Check the date of the review and if there are any updated versions
Gaining an insider’s perspective from reading reviews is one way of making an educated decision. The insight however needs to be balanced to avoid any biased perception. Reviews are also a way to know both the advantages and disadvantages and make comparisons among brands, services, and products.
You will also have information to help you carry out further research in your pursuit of making an informed decision. You may also discover other products and services as you read reviews. You need to however know how to analyze reviews and test for authenticity. That way, you stand more of a chance of making an educated decision.