Andy Mabbutt, managing director of Feefo, the online feedback specialist which commissioned the research, said: “It’s all about reassurance – both of the product and the website you’re buying it from.”
The survey of 1,000 premium customers was carried out by Leapfrogg, a specialist digital marketing agency helping premium brands and retailers increase customer acquisition, revenue and market share.
Commercial director Ben Potter said: “Our survey highlights the need for even the most luxury of brands to include user-generated content to build trust from a third party voice (ie other customers) and therefore increase conversion rates, as well as the SEO benefit this content adds.
“We asked respondents ‘what are your customers’ online expectations of you as a premium brand in 2012?’. A third (34 per cent) cited ‘visible, believable reviews’ as a website feature that constitutes a premium shopping experience.”
The research also showed that 61 per cent of premium UK shoppers say they will not reduce their online spending habits in 2012. Indeed, 30 per cent of respondents claimed they are actually planning on spending more in 2012 than they did in 2011, due to increasing levels of good service and confidence purchasing online.