Have you started the process of gathering User-Generated Content from your audience base? If so, you’re probably asking yourself what you should be doing with it, in order for it to be most beneficial to your site. Here’s five ways to make that content work for you: 1. Create a following. Your customers want to buy into a feeling, not just a product. Use shared channels, like social media, to build a community around a shared affinity for your product. You can ramp this up by using a contest or promotion to get people involved or to get a unique hashtag trending. 2. SEO Value. Search engines love consistent, fresh, unique content. By allowing your customers to create that content for you, you’re streamlining the process and making your site more attractive to search results and customers alike. 3. Target Audience Understanding. Once you get your customers involved in generating content for you, there’s a lot that can be learned from what they provide. The common threads in uploaded photos, or how they use your products, can provide you with great insights on who your buyers are. For instance, if the people photographing your energy drink are consistently outside hiking, rather than in a gym or playing team sports, then you can funnel your marketing efforts and branding into a more nature-focused vibe. 4. Credibility and Trustworthiness. How many times have you headed straight for the reviews when purchasing from an online retailer for the first time? We as consumers trust other consumers to inform us on a purchasing decision. That’s why sites like Angie’s List and Home Advisor exist and thrive. What your customers are saying about you is 100x more valuable than anything YOU can say about your brand or product. Good product reviews and user photos will do more to drive sales than any product description or photography you can provide. 5. Sense of Urgency. Nothing creates a sense of urgency in the sales cycle like your social media being flooded with one particular product or service. Something in our consumerist nature tells us that if hundreds of people already have X, then they must be close to running out of X, and we must get it before it’s gone. User-generated content is an excellent, free, underutilized resource for eCommerce brands. Don’t be the last brand in your industry to catch on to this trend – Make sure that you don’t miss out on UGC when creating marketing plans for 2018 and beyond. For more information about User Generated Content, or to create a plan for your brand, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 888-429-4803.