2021 customer review survey

Getting a 5 star review is your obvious target when requesting reviews – but what is the minimum number of stars required to gain trust from prospective customers?

We asked over 1,000 people their opinion about reviews. We then broke down the information by age and gender and crunched the numbers. The Leave.Review 2021 review survey will help your understanding of what builds customer trust, how reviews impact your online reputation and also gives you faith that online reviews will work for your business.

We asked the following questions:

Let’s get started with question 1

When reading online reviews, what’s the minimum number of stars a business must have for you to be interested in using them?

Leave.Review 2021 Customer Survey

OK, so that’s interesting – so it looks like 4 stars is the sweet spot, with fewer consumers demanding 5 star reviews. In other words, 56% of new customers expect to see a minimum of 4 stars before they’d consider using a business

This means when receiving a 4 star review, you should celebrate as you’re in the “hot-zone” of customer reviews.

Diving down in to the detail a bit more, we learn that there is very little difference in the response to this question by gender:

When reading online reviews, what’s the minimum number of stars a business must have for you to be interested in using them (by gender)?

Leave.Review 2021 Customer Survey

So, gender does not have a big impact on review choices for minimum star, rating. How about age groups?

When reading online reviews, what’s the minimum number of stars a business must have for you to be interested in using them (by age)?

Leave.Review 2021 Customer Survey

Breaking down the data of minimum stars required to use a business illustrates that there is an increase in demand for the 35-44 age group for 5 stars. This group accounts for 22.73% of the 6 age bands. The smallest volume was 5.68% for the 18-24 year olds demanding 5 star reviews.

Key statistics – Minimum review count

  • 56% of new customers expect to see a minimum of 4 stars before they’d consider using a business Tweet this
  • Only 9% of consumers require a business to have 5 stars before they will consider using them. Tweet this
  • Just 6.76% of consumers would consider using a business with a 1 star, and only 7.85% would customer using a business with 2 stars Tweet this

Do people read online reviews?

Ok – it’s great to know that the specific star rating is important for people reading reviews, but how many people actually read reviews?

How frequently did you use the internet to find a local business in the 12 months?​

Leave.Review 2021 Customer Survey

What’s reassuring about this is that it’s clear that a lot of people are using online reviews before choosing a business. Over half (53.98%) of those surveyed use online reviews at least once a week. Only 9.64% have not used online reviews in the last 12 months.

The shockers? 18.09% only use the internet once a monthly basis to read reviews. My assumption before analysing the data would be that people are as dedicated to reviews as I am. I was expecting the “Few times per week” statistics to be a the leader with a much bigger lead.

Let’s see how these stats look when split down by gender:

How frequently did you use the internet to find a local business in the 12 months?​ (by gender)?

Leave.Review 2021 Customer Survey

Ok – where’s the notable stats? The graph shows us that men are 30% more likely to read reviews a few times a week compare to females. They’re also 38% more likely to read reviews daily compared to females.

All other gender comparisons have too little in difference to be remarked upon.

Let’s break down the data by age group to see if that creates an interesting angle.

How frequently did you use the internet to find a local business in the 12 months?​ (by age)?

Leave.Review 2021 Customer Survey

It didn’t! – You can see that the age groups are divided relatively equal for all categories. That’s 10 seconds of your life you’re not getting back 🙂

Key statistics – Minimum review count

  • 53.98% of consumers use online reviews at least once a week Tweet this
  • Men are 38% more likely to read reviews daily compared to females Tweet this

Do you read online reviews for local businesses?

OK, time to bring out the big stats. A whopping 86% of people surveyed said that they read reviews for local business, with only 13.6% who say that never read them.

In more detail this is 12.2% always read reviews, 50.8% occasionally and 23.4% regularly.

The clear message is that if you want a customer for your local business then there is an 86% chance that a prospective customer will read a review before making a buying decision

How likely are people to write a review (in the last 12 months)?

It is quite interesting to know how many of those surveyed have actually left a review in the last 12 months.

This gives us an idea of the size of the review writing market out there – which may have an influence on your review outreach strategy.

Have you written an online review for a business in the last 12 months?

That’s another interesting statistic. My assumption would be that most people would have written at least 1 review, but it appears that just 34.19% of those surveyed had left a review in the past 12 months.

This may mean that those who write reviews, write many and that there are a large segment of consumers who are more “readers” than “writers”.

Have you written an online review for a business in the last 12 months (by gender)?

The gender breakdown is evenly split, illustrating that there is no bias in leaving a review

About this Survey

  • The survey was conducted over 3 days between 10th Jan 2021 and 12th Jan 2021
  • A total of 1007 consumers provided complete responses
  • Responses were taken from consumers in the USA
  • Hover over the segments in the charts below to reveal the actual count of gender and age categories.

 

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