Online Product Reviews and Testimonials Continue to Gain Importance in Beauty Recommendations

A new report The Anti-Aging Facial Skincare Consumer Report by The NPD Group, Inc. shows that while friends and family recommendations and the availability of samples are still the leading purchase influencers for women looking to buy anti-aging facial skin care products, online sources are making more of an impact in 2012, compared to 2010.

According to the report, respondents answered the question “How much influence does each of the following factors have on your when deciding what facial skin care products with anti-aging benefits to buy?” with the following statistics:

  • In 2012, 75% said “friends/family/coworkers recommendations,” which is the same as in 2010;
  • in 2012, 73% said “availability of samples or trial size products,” down from 75% in 2010;
  • in 2012, 68% said “recommendations made by my doctor/dermatologist,” versus 67% in 2010;
  • in 2012, 67 said “product reviews/testimonials” affected this decision, while it wasn’t an option in 2010;
  • and in 2012, 58% said “information found through searches done online,” versus 52% in 2010.

The percentage of women who found information through searches done online increased the most since 2010, compared to other influences that either stayed the same or decreased slightly. In addition to information found through searches done online, more women today report they are educated via Internet community websites like Facebook and Twitter (21% vs. 16%), and blogs (19% vs. 16%) as compared to two years ago. In contrast, magazine/newspaper advertisements appear to have less of an impact today as compared to 2010 (50% vs. 54%).

“Success in the anti-aging skincare category is largely governed by product efficacy perceptions,” said Karen Grant, vice president and senior global industry analyst, The NPD Group. “Women are willing to pay for products that they believe work. Effective products tend to generate buzz that leads to positive word of mouth as well as online chatter with regards to reviews and blogs that serve as key influencers. As an industry we want to continue to innovate and create products that address the wide variety of aging concerns for women of all ages and ethnicities.

The Anti-Aging Facial Skincare Consumer study utilized NPD’s Online Panel and was fielded October 8–17, 2012. A nationally representative sample of females 18+ residing in the United States were targeted. Total returns from the nationally representative sample of females 18+ were weighted to reflect census targets for demographics. This is an update to the Anti-Aging Facial Skincare Consumer Report released in 2010.

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