How the “fateful” first online consumer review can have an impact lasting three years

A “first-review effect” on e-commerce sites suggests that the first piece of user-generated feedback about a product can have an impact on word of mouth for up to 36 months.

The first customer review – and corresponding star rating – posted on an e-commerce site like can positively or negatively impact the digital conversation for up to three years.

Such findings came from a study, entitled “The Fateful First C”, that was published in the journal , and analyzed 177 vacuum cleaners sold on the online platforms run by Amazon and Best Buy over a 12-month period.

WARC subscribers can sign in to keep reading

Not a subscriber?

WARC helps you to plan, create and deliver more effective marketing

  • Prove your case and back-up your idea

  • Get expert guidance on strategic challenges

  • Tackle current and emerging marketing themes

WARC consistently delivers valuable insights that help to make me look like an expert in front of my colleagues and clients.

Dasha Boryso
Strategy Partner, Fetch

You’re in good company

We work with 80% of Forbes' most valuable brands* and 80% of the world's top top-of-the-class agencies.

* Top 10 brands