The Benefits Of User Generated Content And Why It Is So Important

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The Benefits Of User Generated Content And Why It Is So Important

The benefits of User Generated Content are endless. You might have heard about this winning strategy for your eCommerce and the possibilities that User Generated Content brings. Maybe you understand the basic definition – it is right there in the title – content generated by users.

But what can User Generated Content really do for your brand?

In this post, we’d like to share all of the benefits of User Generated Content and how to leverage them to their full capacity in your User Generated Content strategy. Why not check out how these brands are nailing fashion and apparel UGC.

Table of Contents

  1. What is UGC
  2. Why is UGC so important
  3. 8 Benefits of User Generated Content
  4. What are some types of UGC
  5. User Generated Content Examples
  6. Our Tips on UGC
  7. Pros and Cons of UGC
  8. How can Flowbox help with your UGC strategy

What is User Generated Content: a quick introduction

Unsure what UGC actually is? UGC is content that customers create featuring a brand that can be used in that brand’s marketing strategies. From customer reviews to images posted on social media, User Generated Content can be found in many different spaces on the internet and then leveraged to increase sales and engagement. You can use UGC in your eCommerce website to enhance your customers’ shopping journey and experience, as well as build trust with your community and reach new potential customers.

Why is UGC so important?

User Generated Content is everywhere right now. To stay on top of your competition, you should really consider incorporating it into your marketing strategy, as UGC and social purchases are the future of eCommerce retail. A mesmerising 83% say that Instagram helps discover new products, whereas 80% decide whether to make a purchase with the help of the popular social media platform.

Below you will find a myriad of reasons as to why UGC should be part of your eCommerce.

8 Benefits of User Generated Content

There are a myriad of reasons to start leveraging UGC now. Let us tell you about some of the most important benefits of User Generated Content.

1. Build trust with customers

So what makes UGC so great? Since this content has been ‘crowdsourced’ from real customers, it has a notably raw and authentic feel. Plus, a model in a studio isn’t actually using the product have an interest in spreading their honest opinion. They’re real people, in the world, taking nice pictures with your products. Not using them would be a big mistake in your marketing strategy.

VVV Ameland UGC Flowbox

Brands that run User Generated Content campaigns are seen as authentic, meaning that customers trust them more. In fact, studies show that UGC can drive improved trust and loyalty for eCommerce brands, and a whopping 80% of respondents have said that UGC highly impacts their purchasing decisions.

And if 90% of customers check product reviews before purchase, UGC will help you reinforce the reliability and performance of your products.

While 91% of shoppers are influenced to buy by social content, every brand out there is contending to be an influencer. Therefore, building trust with your target audience should be high on every brand’s list.

Shoppers have too many options to waste time on a brand that they don’t believe will deliver a consistent product. Make sure your customers know that when they buy something from you, they’re guaranteed a product that everyone trusts and loves.

Fjällräven UGC Flowbox

People are already talking about you on social media. They’re already comparing products and listening to peer recommendations of what to buy. So why not harness all of this social proof, and use it to impress your shoppers?

Learn how to create the perfect UGC campaign for your brand.

2. Increase your conversion rate and revenue

What’s even more exciting and one of the true UGC benefits is the fact that this kind of authentic customer communication can actually help to increase eCommerce revenue. As Europe’s leading visual commerce, we see this happen everyday with our customers across industries.

Starting with fashion and apparel brands, jeans brand Salsa Jeans increased their conversion rates by 17.27% with UGC even during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. By implementing UGC galleries within their online shopping journey, the brand brought in more online revenue by providing shoppers with real examples of how people style their products.

Salsa Jean UGC community page

Nowadays in a post-pandemic world, this is a great example of how you can tailor your UGC strategy to current events and trends to keep your shoppers interested.

It’s the same for other industries, for example furniture brands! By connecting consumer generated content to products within their catalogue, furniture brand VOX saw an 18.76% increase in conversion rates thanks to UGC.

VOX sofa UGC Flowbox

From footwear and cosmetics to consumer goods, fashion and apparel and more, online brands are benefitting from the conversion power of UGC. So, no matter your industry, the benefits of User Generated Content are clear. Implement it into your eCommerce store and see your sales skyrocket!

3. Easy curation of content vs creating content

Let’s not kid ourselves: sometimes we don’t have the time, energy or resources to come up with killer content day-in and day-out. (Especially if you’re a small team, and the same person who manages your social media channels also doubles up as a photographer, marketer, and blog article writer!)

However, when your content person plays the role of ‘curator’ versus ‘creator’, their job becomes much easier.

If you’re able to encourage and curate customer content on a regular basis, you instantly lift the burden of constant content creation. Each time a follower tags you and leaves positive feedback or asks a question, this is an opportunity to use customer content to your advantage.

For the content creators behind your brand, the benefits of encouraging and curating customer content are three-fold:

  1. You don’t have to constantly self-promote or fill your feed with fluff
  2. You’re not forced into guessing whether or not your content is relevant to your followers: after all, they’re the ones creating it
  3. Boosting your followers via customer content can happen in an instant: all it takes is a quick caption and a click – rather than hiring models, shooting, and editing

If nothing else, incorporating customer content into your feed is a fantastic supplement to your existing social strategy. Since User Generated posts are truly organic, they’re a welcome break from pieces that you’d normally create and boost yourself.

And not only that, but users are already creating this content. 80 million photos are uploaded daily to Instagram. And don’t forget the 30 billion pieces of content published to Facebook monthly. It’s already being generated, just learn how to curate it.

 4. Increase customer engagement

We’ve already talked about how UGC can help increase revenue – but we can’t forget about engagement! While we should always have our eyes on conversions, it’s also important to track how much consumers want to participate in the fandom of your brand. And with UGC, that can increase a lot.

For example, consumer goods brand, Newskill Gaming, saw that 4.10% of visitors interact with the UGC galleries and carousels that they have implemented in their website.

Skiller UGC gallery Flowbox

UGC can be so much more than just a nice asset to have you in site. It can also truly help customers understand how your products work in real-life situations and help people make decisions when they can’t hold the product in their hand.

5. Social Proof

We may be repeating ourselves when it comes to social proof, but not without reason. Social proof is possibly one of the most important psychological triggers in marketing. Customers want other loyal customers to affirm and validate their purchases, and nothing can quite achieve this like UGC can, even the most elaborate and expensive professional campaigns. The great thing is that you can get your shoppers to do the legwork for you for half the time and the resources.

6. Unlimited and regular stream of content

Now that you’re encouraging your customers to tag and post about your brand, you have created a steady flow of content that you can then use on your website. This cannot be understated as it saves you so much time and energy that would be otherwise wasted on content creation and brainstorming, whereas UGC is just at your fingertips and is begging to be implemented on your website.

7. Increase exposure

UGC generates word-of-mouth. Digitising anecdotal recommendations does not fail, as more than 74% of consumers identify word-of-mouth as an important influence in their buying decisions. This old-school method can revolutionise your brand’s performance by reaching new potential customers and creating a domino effect of positive feedback. This then turns into more profit for you and a wider audience.

8. The Power of Visual Reviews

So what is the reason why UGC can help increase conversions and engagement? Because a UGC integration in your website transforms into powerful visual reviews that give your customers tangible testimonials that they can see with their own eyes.

One of the main benefits of User Generated Content is that it speaks for itself. Written reviews can be a helpful thing to include in your site, but visual reviews further propel the conversation towards converting.

This is because we are already living in a visual world, where endlessly scrolling through Instagram is natural. Play to this trend by giving the people what they want! Beautiful galleries of customer content that express how great your products are from the perspective of your customers.

What are some types of UGC?

Despite what you might think, User Generated Content is so much more than just pictures and photos. UGC is multimedia, and can include the following:

  • Images
  • Videos
  • Reviews
  • Audio
  • Testimonials
  • Tweets
  • Blog posts
  • Hashtag campaigns

User Generated Content Examples

Flowbox has an impressive portfolio of brands that have already implemented UGC in their day-to-day. You can see a full list of UGC examples here. Take a look at this excellent homepage Flow implemented by G-Star Raw:

G-Star Raw UGC homepage gallery Flowbox

There is so much you can do with Flowbox in regards to UGC implementation, so do not hesitate to reach out and let us help you!

5 Top Tips on UGC

1.Permission request

Make sure that your users are 100% fine with you sharing their content on your website – you can do this through the Flowbox platform which is hassle free.

2.Give your creators credit

Why not give your creators a shoutout? In the age of influencers nothing is more encouraging than some credit and a bit of spotlight.

3.Encourage your audience to post about you

Your customers will not know that you want their UGC unless you tell them! Customers are much more likely to leave a review if you request one, and putting your hashtag in your bio and encouraging users to tag your brand on Instagram takes no time at all.

4.Ensure a regular stream of content

Once you accumulate your UGC, you ideally want it to keep on coming. Creating hashtag campaigns and competitions can ensure you maintain a constant flow of UGC.

5.Connect your UGC to your catalogue

Two words: shoppable gallery. Once you have embedded UGC in your website, connecting it to your products and making it interactive will keep your customers’ shopping journey laser focused on the products in which they are interested and will leave them less likely to abandon their cart.

Pros and Cons of UGC

You may be thinking: so many benefits of UGC, but where is the catch? Are there both pros and cons to User Generated Content? If you play your cards right, there is nothing to worry about, and with Flowbox, you get all the help you need. 

Spam and Trolls

UGC is a double-edged sword, you have a lot of really good content coming in, meaning you will inevitably receive some spam. This is why curation and moderation tools are so important, all that can be supplied by a social media aggregator such a Flowbox. Read on to find out how!

Media Rights and Permissions

It is important to obtain legal rights and permissions to use somebody else’s content on your website if you want to avoid any trouble. Luckily though, most users are happy for you to share their content if they are already tagging you or sharing your hashtag, and Flowbox facilitates the obtaining of said permissions. Easy peasy!

Getting customers to post content you want to use

The truth is that it takes time to grow your audience. As a UGC platform, we often hear from customers that getting eCommerce customers to post about the brand on social media platforms is a challenge. But receiving content that actually matches your brand image is harder. Flowbox offers many tips on how to boost your flow of UGC, through contests to hashtag campaigns, so you need not worry about being left with no content.

How can Flowbox help with your UGC strategy

Of course, navigating the massive marketing process that is UGC can be tough and new. This is why you should consider a social media aggregator like Flowbox to help grow your brand awareness and encourage purchases.

Pulling content from several social media platforms

Flowbox allows you to not only take content from Instagram, but also from platforms such as Facebook and Twitter amongst many others.

Managing and curating content to leverage the benefits of User Generated Content

Collecting, managing, curating and displaying this content in a way that matches your brand’s look and feel takes time and energy. Flowbox facilitates these processes for you and makes your life easier. It can be an overwhelming process, especially once your target audience is sharing like crazy on social networks. That’s why moderating your content is so important, something we’ll talk about in just a second.

With a UGC platform, you can collect and approve the content that best fits your brand’s image instantly. Once it’s been managed and curated, you publish it directly into a gallery or carousel on your website. Plus, tailor design them to fit your brand’s aesthetic.

Why Content Moderation Is Important

It’s exciting to see users posting for your brand on their social channels. But it can get overwhelming when your hashtag is full of content for you to choose from. Especially when there’s some content that you don’t plan on using in your marketing efforts.

One of the most important steps of any User Generated Content marketing strategy is content moderation. It helps you keep your brand’s look and feel cohesive while you use your target audience to generate brand awareness for you.

The best way to ensure that you’re only collecting content that you want to use is with tools like Blacklisting and Whitelisting. These are 2 Flowbox tools that allow your brand to block spam content, while giving a green light to content that you know you’ll be interested in seeing.

Flowbox blocked users moderation feature

From there, managing your content is easy, as you just need to approve the images and videos that you’d like to appear on your eCommerce. And maybe even connect them with a product to make your customer content shoppable.

I think we can all agree that the benefits of User Generated Content speak for themselves. So don’t wait to start leveraging this strategy in your online store, book a demo now to get in touch and find out how we can help today!