<span id="What-Does-User-Generated-Content-Mean">What Does User-Generated Content Mean?</span>
User-generated content (UGC) can be any type of content. It usually comes in the form of photos, videos, testimonials, and blog posts. And is the act of happy customers promoting a brand rather than the brand promoting itself.
UGC sounds like another marketing buzzword, doesn't it? Actually, it has been blazing bright for quite some time and there goes a lot into it.
Let's get started with the most important form of UGC...
<span id="UGC-Product-Review-and-Ratings">UGC Product Review and Ratings</span>
Using customer reviews and ratings is important. It builds trust. Shoppers will know that they don't have to worry about buying from you.
Like this example from e-commerce brand (runs on Shopify) BlendJet:
In fact, 88% of online shoppers incorporate reviews into their buying decisions. So you can't risk leaving them out.
Reviews and ratings are valuable for your customers. Don't fight it. They provide them with an assurance that your company is reliable.
Give future buyers access to learn more about your products. And let them learn from real customers. Not only from you. You might even learn a few things that could help you improve your e-commerce site.
<span id="User-Generated-Content-Boosts-Your-Sales">User-Generated Content Boosts Your Sales</span>
UGC is not only about marketing and advertising. It’s also about building relationships with your audience.
Trying to build an online community around your brand? Perfect, UGC is one of the best ways to do so.
<span id="User-Generated-Content-Makes-Your-Customer-the-Hero">#1: User-Generated Content Makes Your Customer the Hero</span>
Customer-oriented businesses are on the rise. Companies have to keep pace with the changing trends of consumers. With so much going on in our fast-paced world, attention spans can snap away with one click.
If brands don't cater to their customers, their customers will shop elsewhere.
Sneaky marketing tactics don't work anymore. Online users have become savvier in knowing if a company does use these tactics. If they do... well, they're not going to trust them anymore.
<span id="Customer-Trust-Other-Peoples-Opinion">#2: Customer Trust Other Peoples' Opinion</span>
The average person isn't impressed by pushy salespeople anymore.
92% of people are more likely to trust recommendations from other customers than a brand's marketing message. Wow. It's easy to see how far the trust between customers and marketers has been stretched.
You need to adapt. And that’s where UGC comes in.
<span id="User-Generated-Content-is-Affordable">#3: User-Generated Content is Affordable</span>
User-generated content (UGC) is all about the users sharing their own content. Most of them are unpaid and they do it for various reasons.
Maybe they want to share their experience. Maybe they want to build connections with like-minded people. Or maybe they just want to have a chance of winning something.
Whatever it is, it costs you way less than most marketing activities.
With UGC, the users run the show. Marketers don't have to spend any money on campaigns that may - or might not - perform.
Almost too good to be true.
But there's even more.
<span id="User-Generated-Content-is-Great-For-Branding">#4: User-Generated Content is Great For Branding</span>
When UGC became a thing, businesses were hesitant. They feared using user-generated content to represent their brand.
It was difficult to justify taking the risk of using "amateur" content. I mean, they had access to professional content.
But then something happened. Something that changed everything.
The quality of photos taken with a smartphone camera increased. A lot. It was no longer an option for brands to ignore user-generated content.
A few years ago, you'd need to spend $10,000 on a 4K camera. No one would have bought one only to submit a video review. Now, in 2022, even regular people have such a camera in their pocket. All day, every day. Not only professional videographers.
Consider this: People upload 350 million photos and videos on Facebook.
And this: over 95 million photos and videos get shared on Instagram.
Every. Single. Day.
Numbers don't lie. User-generated content has become the most trustworthy and influential source of content.
Still not convinced? Well...
<span id="UGC-Has-a-Positive-Impact-on-Google-Rankings">#5: UGC Has a Positive Impact on Google Rankings</span>
Search engines rank fresh and useful content in their search results higher. The steady stream of user-generated content helps a lot. Especially if you have the reviews on your site.