I’ve been having major cell-phone trouble. I couldn’t make a call longer than 5 minutes and I was unable to send out more than a couple texts at a time before my battery fully drained and my phone just shut down. It’s a horrible feeling being so disconnected. The solution: I needed a new battery. I wasn’t about to try to go to the Verizon store (I’m not much for waiting in line for hours) so I tried problem solving using good ol’ Google. I found a couple of online stores with batteries selling from $8.99-$49.99. I’m not sure why the battery pricing was so across the board, but I wasn’t about to pay over $30, and don’t even get me started about the additional shipping fees involved.
In my search I found the holy grail of cheap batteries online for $3.99-$10.99 on Amazon. “How could this possibly be so cheap?” I asked myself. I of course was drawn to the cheapest battery ($3.99 new), but went straight to the buyer reviews, because how could such a sweet deal exist? Well, to my dismay…it doesn’t. I found out that some people (out of 21 reviews) had luck, but the majority found the product to look used, be scratched, and the new battery would still not hold a charge. So what did I do? I went for the $4.99 (new) version with the more positive reviews.
User reviews can definitely be a valuable resource for users and sellers. Reviews help build trust in a product; They let us see how a product will look or work in real life by someone who has actually experienced it first hand. A buyer can learn if their potential purchase will be reliable and good quality. A review can also help narrow down all of the other potential choices out there (such as my million other battery options). If a product is perceived as favorable by a consumer, product sales can take off. And vice-versa, a negative review can impact how much you sell (like the $3.99 battery).
Some people look more for negative reviews to figure out the disadvantages of a product. Recently, I was in the market for an outdoor BBQ and I looked to reviews to be able to compare positive and negative features within my price range. It turns out that some BBQs only had bad reviews because the instructions on how to put the thing together were horrible (and they were), but after they were assembled, the quality was great. Some other perceived negative reviews can also lead others to buy a product. For example, one person may think a ceramic bowl is too heavy, but to another, it could mean the bowl is sturdy and will break less easily. Negative reviews, from the seller-end, can also provide helpful tips on how to improve a product, or show you what isn’t working with what your selling. In the end, reviews are a great tool to use to your advantage, whether consumer or retailer. And for me, I spent a little bit more money, but saved on a potential headache in the future; The battery worked like magic and I was happy I took the time to see what people thought upfront.
For more important facts on reviews, check out this link!