The Importance of User Reviews in Alcohol E-Commerce

The Importance of User Reviews in Alcohol E-Commerce

In the rapidly evolving landscape of e-commerce, alcohol brands are increasingly turning to online platforms to reach their customers. With this digital shift, traditional methods of discovering and selecting alcoholic beverages have been supplemented, and in some cases replaced, by online reviews. The significance of customer feedback in the alcohol e-commerce sector cannot be overstated. User reviews have emerged as a critical factor in building trust and credibility for alcohol brands online, influencing purchasing decisions and shaping consumer perceptions in profound ways.

The Power of Peer Opinions

In an age where consumers are bombarded with countless choices and marketing messages, the authenticity and relatability of peer reviews cut through the noise, offering valuable insights into the quality, taste, and overall experience of an alcoholic product. Studies have consistently shown that consumers trust user reviews as much as personal recommendations from friends and family. This trust is particularly crucial in the alcohol market, where taste preferences are highly subjective and the quality of the experience can vary widely.

Peer opinions serve as a form of social proof, reassuring potential buyers of their choice's validity. In the realm of alcohol e-commerce, where customers cannot sample the product before purchasing, reviews become even more critical. They provide a taste test by proxy, allowing consumers to gauge whether a wine's notes of oak and vanilla or a whiskey's smoky undertones will align with their preferences.

Enhancing Visibility and SEO

Beyond influencing individual purchasing decisions, user reviews significantly impact an alcohol brand's visibility online. Search engines like Google place a high value on fresh, relevant content, and user-generated reviews are a potent source of such content. Each review increases a product's footprint on the web, improving its search engine rankings and making it more likely to be discovered by potential customers.

Moreover, reviews often contain keywords that prospective buyers use when searching for alcoholic products online. This organic inclusion of keywords can boost SEO efforts without the need for overt optimization strategies, driving more traffic to an alcohol brand's website or its listings on e-commerce platforms.

Building Trust and Credibility

Trust is a critical currency in the digital marketplace. For alcohol brands, which often rely on conveying quality and heritage, user reviews are a powerful tool in building and maintaining this trust. Positive reviews can enhance a brand's reputation, signaling to potential customers that the product is worth trying. Even negative reviews, when handled appropriately, can contribute positively to a brand's image. Responding to criticism with offers to address the issue demonstrates a commitment to customer satisfaction, which can bolster trust and loyalty.

This aspect of user reviews is especially important in the alcohol e-commerce space, where the barrier to entry is relatively low. New and lesser-known brands can leverage positive customer feedback to establish their credibility and stand out in a crowded market. Conversely, established brands can maintain their reputation and connect with their customer base in a more personal and direct way.

Influencing Purchasing Decisions

The influence of user reviews on purchasing decisions is well-documented across all sectors of e-commerce, and the alcohol industry is no exception. Reviews act as a critical touchpoint in the customer journey, providing a wealth of information that can sway a buyer's choice. They offer insights into not just the product itself but also the purchasing experience, delivery, packaging, and customer service—all of which are essential considerations for online alcohol purchases.

Furthermore, the volume of reviews matters as much as their content. A higher number of reviews can indicate a popular, well-regarded product, encouraging more customers to make a purchase. This effect is magnified in the alcohol sector, where the experiential aspect of consumption makes the breadth of opinions particularly valuable.

Creating a Feedback Loop

User reviews do not only benefit consumers; they also provide invaluable feedback for brands. Positive reviews highlight what a brand is doing right, while negative feedback can uncover areas for improvement, whether in the product itself, the packaging, or the customer service process. This feedback loop allows alcohol brands to refine their offerings and better meet their customers' needs, leading to improved products, enhanced customer satisfaction, and ultimately, higher sales.

Moreover, engaging with customer reviews—thanking customers for positive feedback and addressing any concerns raised in negative reviews—can strengthen the relationship between a brand and its consumers. This engagement shows that a brand values its customers' opinions and is committed to continuous improvement, fostering a sense of community and loyalty.

Review How To’s

Getting positive reviews to display on your website

Send a review request email using email automation

Create an automated email or SMS message that encourages consumers to leave a review on your site. To ensure that the customer has had enough time to receive and try your product, set the send date for at least 21 days post-purchase.

Make it easy

The easier it is to leave a review, the more likely customers are to follow through. Eliminate any potential barriers by limited the number of form fields, minimizing technical issues and prompting them with questions to answer.

Incentivize shoppers

Shoppers are more inclined to leave a review if offered an incentive to do so. This could be a freebie, a percent or dollar-off discount on their next purchase, discounted shipping, or loyalty points. Be sure to choose an incentive that aligns with your overall branding and product pricing.

Adding reviews to your Shopify website

You can add reviews to your Shopify product pages using in-built features:

  • In your Shopify admin, go to Online Store > Themes.
  • Find the theme you want to edit and click Customize.
  • Go to the product template you want to add reviews to and click Add Section.
  • Select the Reviews app block from the Apps section of the drop-down menu.
  • Move the app block to where you want it on the page.
  • Click Save.

Displaying reviews for maximum impact

Once you’ve begun collecting customer reviews, it is best practice to utilize throughout each point of the sales funnel, providing shoppers a dose of social proof to help inspire conversion. Consider displaying your reviews in the following places:

Product pages

Add reviews to respective product pages so customers can browse perspectives from past customers.

Social media

More and more, consumers are buying products shown in social media posts. Show off your reviews in feed posts, stories and highlights to build trust and interest in your products.

Social ads

Reviews add authenticity and social proof to your paid advertising efforts. By leveraging positive feedback from past customers in your advertising graphics and/or copy, you can attract users’ attention and build trust and brand loyalty.

Abandoned cart emails

Seeing as the majority of shoppers leave their carts without making it to checkout, your abandoned cart email is an important point in the customer journey with regards to influencing purchase decisions. Adding positive reviews to abandoned cart emails can win back prospective customers, using social proof and credibility to increase their trust in your brand and product.


The importance of user reviews in alcohol e-commerce cannot be understated—studies show, 9 out of 10 customers consider product reviews before they make online purchases (Beyond Star Ratings). They are a vital tool for building trust and credibility, enhancing online visibility, influencing purchasing decisions, and creating a valuable feedback loop for continuous improvement. In a market where personal experience and taste are paramount, reviews offer a bridge between the brand and the consumer, providing insights and assurances that traditional marketing cannot necessarily achieve.

For alcohol brands looking to thrive in the digital marketplace, encouraging and managing customer reviews should be a central part of their strategy. By leveraging the power of peer opinions, brands can not only boost their online presence but also connect with their customers in a more meaningful way, building a foundation of trust and loyalty that can sustain their growth in the years to come.

Sources: Beyond Star Ratings: Get Ecommerce Reviews From Customers (2024)
Back to blog