What is User Generated Content and why does it matter?

Aanchal Narad

4 min read Last Updated Dec 16, 2019

How cool would it be if your customers sell your products for you? With User-Generated Content (UGC), it’s possible.

Companies have always had to keep up with consumer trends, but today’s digitally connected customers pose a new predicament: they not only want the best products and services, they have access to more information than ever to help them determine the best. Marketing taglines mean nothing to them. Not even personalized ads sway their opinion. When selecting a business, customers trust the word of their peers above all else. The Voice of the Customer is what sells.

What is User Generated Content?

User Generated Content refers to content created about a brand by unpaid contributors–pictures, videos, tweets, reviews, blog posts, social media comments from real customers about real experiences.

Why is User Generated Content important?

Customers don’t want to buy from a company, they want to buy from a brand who they feel understands them on a personal level, shares their values, and has their best interests at heart. While ad campaigns may list endless features and benefits of a product or service, they don’t foster any meaningful connections. By understanding what user-generated content is and using it puts products and services in context and helps customers see how they would actually fit into their lifestyle. Customers don’t want to hear about the lowest price of this limited offer that they can’t miss; they want relatable stories and human interactions.

What is User Generated Content

Understanding what is user generated content and incorporating it in your website also helps search engine ranking. A steady flow of fresh, on-brand content on a variety of sites in several mediums is awesome for SEO, not to mention this dynamic content is engaging and shareable. In this way, leveraging UGC is the most affordable and efficient advertisement, as it actually promotes itself.

UGC’s influence by the numbers:

  • Brand engagement increases an average of 28% when users are exposed to a mix of user-created product videos and company-produced content
  • 93% of consumers consider UGC helpful in making purchasing decisions
  • On-site customer reviews have shown to increase conversions by 74%
  • 70% of consumers trust online peer reviews more than professional content
  • Sites featuring and leveraging UGC on their site saw a 20% increase in return visitors and up 90% more time spent on the sit

How can your business start leveraging UGC?

If a brand doesn’t appear to relate to its customers, customers will search for a brand that does–this search won’t take them long either: 78% of B2C companies began incorporating UGC in 2015. This is largely due to media platforms enabling easy promotion of UGC on public sites.

What is User Generated Content? BirdEye makes it incredibly easy for businesses to connect with their customers in real-time and capture authentic feedback–reviews, pictures, and videos of recent experiences are collected with the tap of a button. Through the BirdEye platform, this feedback can then be shared automatically to the company’s social channels and website. This way, customers browsing any of these pages won’t have to search far and wide for authentic social proof: they’ll find recent testimonials right there next to official business information, creating a complete picture of what they can expect if they choose this brand.

If you’re providing awesome experiences, you’re creating loyal customers. These guys are responsible for 33% of your revenue, and through positive testimonials, they can help earn you the other 77%. So you see, by understanding what is user-generated content and leveraging it you can use retention to boost acquisition. It’s like a harmonious massage circle of brand enthusiasm. Kind of beautiful, isn’t it?

You also may want to read How does Google search work?

About BirdEye

With BirdEye, it’s easier than ever to get new authentic customer reviews, building trust that leads to more sales. In today’s reputation economy, BirdEye provides the eyes, ears and algorithms necessary to create the five-star customer experiences that keep your business at the top.

Want to see it in action? Visit birdeye.com/scan-business/. To learn more, go to birdeye.com or call toll-free #1-800-561-3357. Follow us on LinkedInFacebook and Twitter.