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BizReport : Research archives : July 17, 2007


Consumer brand preferences swayed by online research

Brands still play an important role online, but a plethora of information and opportunities for online research means consumers are becoming less brand loyal.

by Helen Leggatt

Familiarity with a brand or retailer is a still a major driver of online purchases. In a study by AOL and the Henley Centre, 90 percent of respondents said they would purchase a product online if they were familiar with the brand and retailer. Eighty percent would be prepared to make an online purchase even if they were only familiar with the retailer.

In fact, more and more people are turning to the Internet when making buying decisions. The report called "Brand New World", quotes Andy Jonesco, SVP, Audience, AOL UK as saying, “Nearly half of all people questioned by the Henley Centre claim that their trust in the information they find online has caused them to change their mind about the product they wanted to buy.”

But, they’re not all looking to the brand or retailer websites for help. The study found that the majority of consumers placed brand and retailer websites behind personal recommendations and price comparison websites when it came to naming which research sources they ranked “honest and fair”. That’s not very surprising when it’s assumed most consumers posting reviews and leaving comments online aren’t, on the whole, doing it for commercial advantage.






Tags: brands, consumer reviews, online retailer, online shopping








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  • I would like anyone to visit iQmer.com because iQmer.com is not consumer reports. It is "web-based word of mouth" which means it is not as much about rating and ranking as it is about having access to the opinions and advice of others within a circle of influence. Right now iQmer is just being launched so we are focusing on content. Our meditate development plans include iQmmunities. This will be a profile link tools that allows people to link friends and family profiles. Invitations and requests to link with other profiles will also be available. Finally, the search functionality of the site will soon allow searches based on profile data.

    In summation, the difference between iQmer and any other review website is:

    #1: iQmer is not trying to sell anything other than the fact we are all MUCH smarter and much more efficient through collective consumer intelligence. We are also not trying to induce reviews with any payments or revenue sharing plans because that seems to alter motives and lead to irrelevance.

    #2: A massive collection of rated reviews can be a little helpful. A selective collection of rated reviews can be more helpful. A local network of reviews from trusted friends, family and acquaintances is very helpful. Having access to a massive collection of rated reviews, a selective collection of rated reviews and 24/7 access to reviews and advice from a local network of friends, family and acquaintances in a very user-friendly, pragmatic format that allows and promotes easy analysis and comparison...That goes beyond helpful...That is advantageous, valuable and time saving. That is iQmer.

    Here's the premise...Why should I spend time doing research to educate myself on various products and services when people I trust and speak with on a regular basis may be able to drastically cut my reading and research time?

    Example: I have a friend that loves discus fish...knows them, participates in several discus fish group activates, is active in discus fish discussion forums and researches new ways to breed them etc. Does it make sense for me to invest the amount of time he/she has in learning and researching discus fish if I want to get into them? OR, should I shorten my time investment by capitalizing on the knowledge he has acquired and is willing to share with me? Of course there are also the same opportunities in reverse.





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