YA Survey: Online Reviews and Rebates Do Sway Consumer Behavior when Buying Durable Goods

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Three in Five Turn First to Online Ratings/Reviews or Family/Friends. Eighty-Six Percent Would Share Their Experience via a Product Review in Exchange for a Gift Card.

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“Our jobs as marketers are to not only ensure customers are satisfied with our products, but to also enable dialogue and create a construct for ratings, reviews, and referrals that bring a marketplace clout to the brand.” YA Vice President of Sales Dan Ribolzi

A recent study by YA, an industry market leader in delivering high-impact omni-channel marketing promotions for the nation’s most respected brands, shows that consumers expend considerable effort researching their durable goods purchases. Durable goods are items that yield utility over time, such as a washing machine or computer, as opposed to items designed for immediate consumption.

The Fall 2017 survey of 1,017 adult Americans found that 43 percent turn to online ratings and reviews first when researching options, and another 19 percent rely on word of mouth via family and friends. “Any brand or product manager will tell you ratings, reviews and referrals are an important part of a customer-focused marketing strategy,” says Dan Ribolzi, YA Sales vice president for Manufacturing Clients. “Our research confirms this and reinforces the need to make this a priority. More importantly, it also offers insights into driving such third-party product evangelization.”

When asked about incentives, 86 percent of respondents indicated they would write a product review in exchange for a gift card, and 72 percent would participate in a refer-a-friend program if both they and their friend were rewarded.

Rebates were another strategy identified by the survey as impacting durable goods purchases, with three of four respondents indicating they would submit a rebate form “most” or “all” of the time. “The rebate – whether offered instantly or post-purchase, awarded virtually or in card form – continues to be a strong promotional lever,” Ribolzi says. “In fact, when offered the choice between a $50 rebate or an extended warranty valued at $75, 60 percent preferred the $50 rebate. Cash can be a strong motivator, and on a more expensive purchase the savings can help justify the buy.”

Finally, customer loyalty drives not only third-party endorsements, but also repeat purchases. When happy with a previous durable goods purchase, 84 percent of respondents said they would repurchase the product when the original wore out without researching or comparing competing products. “Though a great product is the key to this satisfaction,” Ribolzi explains, “there are tools marketers can use to ensure expectations are met and customers are enjoying their product throughout its entire lifecycle.”

Ribolzi believes the survey points to the importance of authentic customer engagement in effective marketing initiatives. “Ensuring a customer is happy with their product and creating a valuable dialogue before, during and after the sale can often pay off in repeat business and a customer that becomes an advocate,” he says. “Our jobs as marketers are to not only ensure customers are satisfied with our products, but to also enable dialogue and create a construct for ratings, reviews, and referrals that bring a marketplace clout to the brand.”

About the Survey
YA commissioned the online survey of more than 1,000 U.S. adults in Fall 2017.

About YA
For 45 years, YA has been a leader in promotional marketing services. We deliver high-impact, data-driven, digital, social and mobile promotions, such as rebates and rewards, enter to win, referral and loyalty programs, to the nation’s most respected brands. With deep expertise across multiple industries, our end-to-end management of 3,500+ promotions each year creates tens of millions of consumer interactions annually. We then analyze these interactions to understand the drivers of consumer behavior. This makes us experts at turning even first-time customers into loyal brand advocates who take action, buy more and spread the word. For more information, visit: http://www.yaengage.com.

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Tracy Kurschner
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Tracy Kurschner
Kurschner Communications
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