Social proof is not just a buzz word for marketers to sound fancy.
It has real effects.
These social proof statistics show you what we mean when we say social proof is crucial.
If you haven’t heard of social proof yet, here’s a brief explanation.
Social proof is a psychological phenomenon. It makes us search for behavioral cues from our peers, especially in new situations.
Here’s an example:
I visited a new yoga studio recently. I had been to yoga before, but not this particular class.
When I entered the room, I saw people laying down on their mats. They looked like they were sleeping.
I was confused, but I did the same. After all, that must be the correct way to do things here.
I also grabbed the exact same yoga equipment that everyone else was using, even though no one had given me instructions.
The same thing works in marketing, too. If you see a new online store, and you know nothing about it, you look for other people’s experiences.
You read reviews, check the chat forums and ask your friends.
Social proof is much more powerful than you probably realize.
Many people use ad blockers to not see advertisements. Social proof material from other consumers or influencers is a different story.
People generally trust other people’s opinions more than company representatives or branded promotional content.
That’s why social proof is such an important marketing tool for today’s businesses.
The past years have not been easy on local businesses.
The pandemic meant struggles for most businesses, but it also brought about new responsibilities.
Research shows that people held businesses accountable for not following the Covid-19 regulations.
On the other hand, there was the “Support your Local” campaign that encouraged people to buy from local businesses.
These phenomena were especially visible in people’s online behavior and how they wrote reviews.
Another consequence of social distancing and lockdowns was that people moved their business online. As a result, writing reviews has become more and more popular.
Sources: Bright Local, Power Reviews
Social media is definitely a big factor in commerce and marketing. At this point, you can’t deny it.
Traditionally, social media is the place for influencers to market products. While they still do, social media has a much bigger impact on shopping experiences than before.
People buy through social media platforms, share their opinions about products, and communicate with brands.
Let’s see what social proof statistics have to say about social media.
Sources: Statista, Gurus Coach, Finances Online
Reviews are one of the most used forms of social proof. They are the honest opinions of customers, often accompanied by a star rating.
You can find them on review sites like Google and Yelp.
Many websites also showcase customer reviews and testimonials on their own website to build trust and credibility.
Review statistics below should convince you about the importance of customer reviews.
Sources: Qualtrics, Findstack, Reviewtrackers, Northwestern, Service Direct, Bright Local, Status Labs, eMarketer, Review42, Forbes
Visual social proof refers to all social proof that is visually appealing, such as video testimonials, user images and infographics.
Image and video content are more popular than ever.
It is no surprise that social proof in the form of images and videos is also more effective than plain text.
When we see something with our own eyes, it instantly adds credibility.
Image also has a different emotional impact than text.
Sources: Findstack, Wyzowl, Unbounce, Finances Online
You might think that B2B buyers are immune to social proof.
But why would they? B2B buyers are as much human as regular consumers. They are also affected by psychology.
When you think about it, B2B buyers should be especially interested in authentic customer stories.
After all, they want to profit from their investments, whereas consumers can purchase things “just for fun”.
Sources: Demand Gen Report, Statista, G2
Influencer marketing is a significant source of social proof. Consumers like to relate to their favorite celebrities and influencers.
Generally, influencer marketing campaigns have a good return on investment.
It is also an ever-changing field with emerging new platforms and names.
Let’s see what the numbers say.
Source: Linqia, Gurus Coach, Statista
User Generated Content (UGC) refers to content that is made by other “regular people”, other consumers.
UGC works like personal recommendations: an average consumer telling or showing their opinion to other prospective customers.
People trust their peers more than company representatives.
That is what makes UGC so effective.
Sources: Nosto, Finances Online
We at Trustmary have conducted our own research about social proof.
After all, we specialize in increasing your website conversions by using different social proof widgets!
Here are some of our key findings:
Now that you have seen the immense power of social proof, you have no excuses to ignore it.
It’s time to incorporate social proof in your own marketing strategy.
Accumulating social proof can take a while. The fastest way to start is
Customer testimonials on sales pages make a great impact, like we saw from the case examples above.
Social proof pop ups create urgency and make online shoppers act faster.
Start a free trial or book a meeting with us and let’s plan a comprehensive social proof strategy for your website!
What is social proof?
Social proof is a psychological phenomenon that makes people act like their peers. It is a powerful marketing tool that you can use to get more sales and increase trust.
What are types of social proof strategies?
Some social proof strategies are e.g.
How can I leverage social proof?
Leveraging social proof can be as simple as asking your customers to write a review or post about you on social media. You can also implement social proof pop ups or other widgets to showcase reviews directly on your website for extra effectiveness.
In case you don’t yet have raving Google reviews, go through these tips on getting more Google reviews.