Convenient delivery options and competitive pricing are the two main factors that Australian consumers have come to expect from online retailers, with 25% of consumers using two-day shipping, 30% using buy online, pick-up-in-store, while 18% have tried a subscription service in the past year, according to the annual Shopper Experience Index (SEI) released by product reviews and user generated content solutions provider, Bazaarvoice.

Another key factor fueling the shopping journey is user-generated content, Australian consumers are wary of shopping experiences that feel one-sided. They want to trust brands and retailers with 72% of Australian shoppers claiming to trust online product reviews.

Trust is at the heart of Australian shoppers’ decision making, with most shoppers only buying from brands that they trust. Australian shoppers are also concerned when the review comes from a brand itself with 40% of shoppers stating that fake reviews from a brand would cause them to completely lose trust in it.

When it comes to fake reviews, consumers become suspicious when they see multiple reviews that all have similar wording (57%), followed by review content that does not match the product (53%), bad grammar and/or misspellings (38%) and 36% are concerned when they see an overwhelming amount of five star or positive reviews.

Bazaarvoice managing director APAC, Kate Musgrove said, “With so many goods readily available for shoppers at the click of a keyboard, the power sits with them. As a result, retailers have no choice but to be nimble and adapt to ever-changing shopper habits. On the flipside this can be empowering for brands as customers are prepared to share openly in reviews what they want and don’t want, and, if acted on, this can have a positive impact on the product and overall customer experience.

“In today’s world, the shopper is very much front and centre as they are able to pick and choose what and who they find credible. Nowadays, shoppers are increasingly savvy and acutely aware of fake reviews. Indeed, they believe they can spot a review written by a bot, someone who has been paid to write a review, or someone who has never used the product. This means that Australian brands and retailers have to embrace authenticity and re-evaluate how they approach brand advocacy.”