Why do online reviewers do it?

Thousands of people contribute online reviews of products, services, music, movies – in fact, just about everything – each day, and for the most part don’t get paid a cent. So why do they do it?

Yahoo! recently commissioned a survey to get an insight into the head of the online reviewer. It found that the reason internet users most commonly give for contributing reviews is to “help others though knowledge sharing,” followed by a “desire to promote the businesses and help the merchant succeed”. One in three of those surveyed said they felt more connected to the online community when they contributed reviews.

Unsurprisingly, the people who contribute reviews also tend to be consumers of them. Just on 80% say they are likely to be influenced by a review, and 71% find them of some help in making a purchasing decision. Almost 30% said their purchasing decisions are always or often influenced by a review.

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