Seven Ways to Successfully Collect and Use UGC to Increase Conversion Rates

October 27, 2021

User generated content has never been more important as shoppers look to connect with the brands they buy from.

When the world was shut down by stay-at-home orders, lockdowns, and quarantine, consumers craved human connection. This led to a surge in user-generated content during the pandemic, as brands touched on sensitive issues and tried to forge a deeper connection with their buyers.

Even before the pandemic, 79% of consumers say UGC highly impacts their purchasing decisions, and content created by other shoppers is trusted 50% more than content created by brands.

“What is user-generated content?” you might be asking. It basically refers to content, such as reviews, photos, and videos that have been created by your customers.

If you haven’t started incorporating UGC into your campaigns, now’s the time to do so. Here’s a guide to collecting and leveraging customer-generated content to drive conversions.

How to Collect UGC to Use in Campaigns

Collecting UGC can be tricky if your customers don’t know what you want from them. But there are plenty of ways that you can inspire them to take action.

  • Review request emails: send out emails to recent buyers asking them to leave a review. Time it right by leaving enough time for them to have tried your product but not too long that they have forgotten about you. Use a customer review software like Okendo to automatically request reviews
  • Create a hashtag: include the hashtag in email campaigns, on social media, and other marketing materials to encourage existing customers to share their experiences
  • Upgrade reviews: encourage customers that write a review to share a photo or video alongside their review that you can use elsewhere on your site or social channels
  • Reward customers: improve customer experience by giving shoppers who provide a review or other UGC a coupon, discount, or reward. The incentive can increase incrementally depending on the depth of the review; for example, let customers who share a photo review unlock a bigger discount on their next purchase


Flamingo Estate offers customers $10 off their next order if they leave a review and a photo.

How to Leverage UGC to Increase Conversion Rates

Once you’ve started collecting UGC, you can begin to sprinkle it throughout your marketing campaigns and your website to increase conversion rates - it also goes a long way in building customer loyalty. Showcasing photos, reviews, and videos from past customers adds social proof to product pages and instills buyer confidence in on-the-fence shoppers.

1. Display it on your website

Add reviews and photos to relevant product pages, your homepage, and other key touchpoints - you might even decide to have a dedicated UGC page on your website, like Freshly Picked.

Freshly Picked

2. Share it on social media

Build trust, increase your social media reach, and direct more customers to your website by incorporating UGC into your social posts.

You can do this by:

  • Using customer photos in Shoppable posts
  • Sharing reviews in your Stories
  • Re-sharing photos when shoppers post them

3. Enhance checkout

Add reviews and other UGC to checkout to tackle any last-minute objections that customers might have and give them a final dose of buyer confidence. Having reassurance right at the final stage helps turn a potential sale into a sure thing - it’s even more effective if you can share reviews that are relevant to the products in a customer’s cart.

4. Incorporate UGC into Abandoned Cart flows

Lure on-the-fence shoppers back by integrating UGC into your abandoned cart emails as Nimble Activewear does. You can simply share a star rating or, even better, incorporate relevant reviews to the products in question.

5. Add reviews to ads

Level up your social ads and Google Shopping ads by adding reviews to your listings. This also enhances your search engine ranking, which ultimately leads to more visitors and more sales.

6. Level up product recommendation emails

Use reviews and other UGC in product recommendation emails to add an extra layer of social proof. Sharing content like this adds social proof and provides an authentic insight into the product that potential buyers might not have got from polished brand photos and marketing copy.

7. Use attributes to personalise communication

Leverage the data you have collected from reviews to segment your audience and personalise communication with them, as WAG does. They collect information about customers’ pets and use that to send relevant newsletters, like this one that’s specifically designed for people with puppies.

Leverage UGC for Connection and Conversions

UGC has never been more important for connecting brands and customers. Collecting reviews and photos gives merchants an endless supply of authentic content they can use throughout the sales cycle, including on their websites and other marketing platforms. Make sure you leverage it in different ways, from enhancing your email marketing efforts to tackling last-minute buying objections, and personalising customer communication.

Author: Lindsay Kolinsky, Partner Marketing Manager, Okendo

About Okendo: Okendo is THE customer review platform for fast growing Shopify brands. An Official Google Reviews partner and trusted by 3,500+ high-growth consumer brands such Netflix, SKIMS and Bite, Okendo has all the tools brands need to capture and showcase high-impact social proof through the online buying journey. Learn more about our unique review capture process, blazing fast display widgets and extensive Klaviyo integration at