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Review-fluence: Half of consumers never buy anything online without checking reviews first

New research from Checkatrade reveals the power of reviews with half of adults (46%) admitting they NEVER purchase anything online without checking reviews first.

The study of 2,000 adults found quality of service (54%), reliability (47%) and value for money (46%) are amongst the key elements that people look for in a review.

Yet, despite our trust in reviews, 17% of people admit to never leaving an online review after experiencing a product or service. While a further one fifth (22%) do not think about the potential impact their review – whether positive or negative – can have on a business. Leaving your tradesperson a review is so important.

As a result, Checkatrade has teamed up with the UK’s leading etiquette expert, William Hanson to create ‘Reviews in Review’, a guide to help educate the nation on online review etiquette.



Of those who post online reviews, people will write on average 47 a year – equating to a staggering 2.1 billion online reviews every year. People from London are the most diligent (leaving 79 reviews on average per year) and respondents from the South West lagging behind leaving only 27 reviews a year on average.

When asked why they haven’t left an online review, 23% claimed lack of motivation, followed by not being a priority (23%) and forgetting (20%) topping the reasons why. Despite this, 90% admit to relying on reading reviews to help them make a purchasing decision.


The research also found that people will read at least seven reviews before deciding whether to book a hotel, six reviews for a tradesperson and only four reviews for hairdressers/barbers – with quality of service (54%), reliability (47%) and value for money (46%) amongst some of the key elements they look for within a review before deciding.

The most popular services reviewed around the nation include hotels (respondents leave a review, on average, 27% of the time), restaurants (25%) and trade businesses (24%) with insurers (17%) coming in last.

With 65% of people keen to understand how to leave a constructive and fair online review, William Hanson shares a few of the key factors that make an ideal online review:

  1. Share Anecdotes – Bring a bit of colour to your review to really paint a picture – rather than keeping it to a simple ‘this service was good, I’d recommend them’, share an anecdote to illustrate why
  2. Pace Yourself – Don’t write a review straight away while you’re in the moment – your feelings may change once you’ve had time to think about it. But make sure you leave the review within one week so you still remember all the details that will make it a helpful review for others.
  3. The Fairness Test –  Before leaving a review, always ask yourself ‘is this fair?’ and ‘were my expectations realistic?’ Your handyman is not a babysitter, and neither are they a concierge – so don’t expect them to sign for your packages or offer day care while you’re out.

Download the free Checkatrade Reviews in Review guide and read William’s tips on how to leave a useful online review now.

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