All Reviews Are Not Created Equally – How Gender Plays Into Your Online Reputation


Businesses are all too often guilty of stereotyping their ideal customer – demographics including age, income, marital status, and hobbies tend to dominate our efforts whether it be for a Facebook ad or the way we design an online coupon. There’s no avoiding the fact that everyone has a target audience, but all too often these factors are only considered before actually making a sale.

Whether you’re the manager at a huge corporation or you wait tables on the weekends while in college, ask yourself the following: how much do you think about your customers after they’ve finished doing business with you? Once someone has left your showroom or paid for their product online, does their age range matter anymore? What about their gender?

A recent study by BrightLocal generated some interesting information about customer reviews in 2018. Aside from noticing just how many people look online before deciding where they do business, digging deeper shows some interesting trends.


Asking For It

Many organizations make it their mission to ask customers for a review at the end of a transaction. Whether you do so in a follow-up email or simply verbalize your desire in person, it’s become a tenant of providing good customer service. The results of these requests though is another story.

BrightLocal’s survey indicated that of the respondents who have been asked to leave a review at one point in their lifetime, 54% of men actually took the action of logging online and giving their feedback while only 37% of women did the same. A surprising 44% of women said they have never even been asked to submit an online review while only 25% of men had never fielded this request.

Handling Your Response

No matter the demographics of your customers, the ones who leave unhappy remarks online are certainly trying to communicate something to you. Whether you answer or not matters, but only to some. Before doing business with a particular establishment, 37% of men stated that they always read a businesses’ response to their reviews. Only 20% of women committed to this answer, while far more women than men said they occasionally read these replies.

It’s not just responses in general that men and women seem to be polarized on, as the type of review even plays a role. 58% of men believe that businesses should respond to positive reviews, perhaps offering thanks for their patronage, while only 41% of women think this matters.

So where does all of this data leave us? If you’re really interested in strategically building your online reputation, consider the differences of opinion that men and women offer. It may encourage you to make sure to ask for a review every time, no matter who your customer is, and perhaps take some extra time to respond to all reviews, not just complaints. Depending on your industry, catering to specific gender preferences may help to boost business too, so spend time getting to know who your customers are and how they feel about online feedback.

Having been bitten by the writing bug at the young age of 6, Courtney gets to live her dream every day by creating content for a wide range of clients. When she’s not typing away at the computer, she loves spending time with her two sons in the Pacific NW.


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