eKomi Releases 2017 StarInsights™ Study for the Consumer Electronics Industry

LOS ANGELES, Apr. 13, 2017 – eKomi, the world’s the largest provider of user-validated ratings and reviews, had released its long-awaited 2017 StarInsights™ 10042017, an exclusive report on the web’s top consumer electronics merchants. This marks the second year in a row that eKomi has delivered this analysis.

After weeks of intensive research, eKomi’s team of consumer-review experts have compared year-over-year performance of all electronics portals on the definitive Internet Retailer 500 (IR 500) list, along with many others not found on the IR500, who’ve nonetheless exhibited outstanding performance over the past 12 months.

The analysis team has also compared each merchant’s ratings and reviews against those in eKomi’s 2016 Consumer Electronics Report, creating a year-over-year performance analysis for all merchants that remained among the top performers – along with several who dropped out of that exclusive list. In addition, the researchers discovered several merchants that did not rank among the top performers in last year’s report, but have risen to top the charts this year with standout ratings and review scores.

 The Crucial Importance of Ratings and Reviews

As many merchants now recognize, customer ratings and reviews are absolutely essential for success in the online marketplace – especially when those scores are integrated into Google search results. Although a comprehensive, user-friendly site is obviously crucial, public reviews build trust before visitors even click the site’s link, significantly increasing its chances of receiving traffic.

Reviews and ratings also boost revenue-generating activity, and inspire even more positive reviews – setting off a “virtuous cycle” in which a well-reviewed website’s popularity continues to skyrocket. Poor reviews, on the other hand, can set off a downward spiral: a site’s sudden disappearance from top search results can abruptly destroy its customer base.

A 2017 ZenDesk survey discussed in Forbes reported that a staggering 88 percent of customers make buying decisions based on online customer reviews. This makes it clear that publicly visible feedback from real customers is a key component in a merchant’s success. And as Google’s search algorithms grow ever smarter, positive reviews and ratings are becoming especially vital in the heated competition for those all-important “above-the-fold” natural search rankings.

Consumer Electronics Market Overview

Just as positive ratings and reviews are crucial to a site’s success, they also provide a relatively reliable indicator of that site’s usefulness and user-friendliness. With that correlation in mind, eKomi’s StarInsights™ study examines the TOP consumer electronics retailers, using their aggregated Google Shopping Seller Ratings from the past 12 months.

Among all electronics retailers studied for the period of April 2016 to April 2017, these five came out the clear winners:

In addition, while researching Google’s Shopping Portal, eKomi found two consumer electronics merchants not listed on the IR 500, who still stood out overwhelmingly among other merchants in their segment. They are:

  • Abt Electronics: ABT Electronics – 7,177 Ratings & Reviews to date across Google Shopping Selling; Ratings from the past 12 months have an average Star Rating of 4.7
  • Checkout Store: Check Out Store – 1,105 Ratings & Reviews to date across Google Shopping Selling; Ratings from the past 12 months have an average Star Rating of 4.7

Year-Over-Year Trend Analysis

eKomi’s research team compared the ratings and reviews of all electronics merchants that ranked in the top charts in 2016’s report, and discovered several striking year-over-year shifts.

B&H Photo Video has seen its number of reviews drop by nearly half, from 542,498 to only 331,992 – although its review score has held steady at 4.7. Newegg saw its number of reviews plummet from 312,343 to only 86,359 – though its review score held steady at 4.4. BuyDig saw a drop in number of reviews from 128,345 to 26,111, along with a significant drop in review score from 4.7 to 4.4.

Other contenders’ performance has seen a mix of positive and negative change. Adorama saw a steep drop in number of reviews, from 48,843 down to just 15,635 – but its score jumped one tenth of a star, from 4.4 to 4.5. YesAsia has also seen a major drop in number reviews, down from 658 to only 345 – but its star score has also risen a point, from 4.6 to 4.7. TigerDirect saw the steepest drop in reviews of any merchant this year, from 146,705 down to only 2,218 – but its star rating increased dramatically from 4.1 to 4.3.

Meanwhile, several merchants that ranked among 2016’s top performers have fallen out of the top rankings altogether in 2017, due to a sharp drop in their ratings and review scores. Google records no ratings or reviews at all for Dell.com, Panasonic.com, PCConnection.com, pcRUSH.com, Rakuten.com, and 47StPhoto.com, over the period from April 2016 to April 2017.

“If these merchants hope to regain their top spots, they’ll need to make a concerted effort to gather positive ratings and reviews over the next 12 months,” commented Michael Ambros, eKomi Founder and CEO. “We’ve seen time and again, across a wide range of sectors, that brands who activate their reviews and ratings see a dramatic leap in search engine referred traffic, and a corresponding boost in revenue.”

New Players on the Chart

Several key players have hit the top chart for the first time this year. Philips entered with a stunning 4.8 rating, despite having no active seller reviews to date. Sonic Electronics stood out with a 3,917 ratings and reviews to date, and an average star rating of 4.5. Abt Electronics also demanded attention with 7,177 ratings and reviews, and an average star rating of 4.7. Checkout Store achieved an impressive 1,105 ratings and reviews, with an average star rating of 4.7. Electronic Express made an impressive showing with 501 ratings and reviews, and an average star rating of 4.4.  GearXS, despite an average Star Rating of only 4.3, gathered a respectable 1,024 ratings and reviews. And Earphone Solutions, despite having only 333 ratings and reviews, attained the highest star rating of any merchant analyzed this year – a near-perfect 4.8.

None of these companies appeared on the top chart in 2016’s report – but their focus on garnering positive ratings and reviews over the past 12 months has pushed them above many of their  competitors. In fact, large numbers of reviews and high ratings have enabled several smaller companies – most notably B&H Photo Video and Abt Electronics – to gain significant market share this year.

“These smaller retailers have acquired significant market share thanks to their high search rankings,” continues Michael Ambros. “This year-over-year research really calls out the impact that reviews and ratings can have on a company’s success, regardless of its size or advertising budget.”

This second edition of eKomi’s annual study, #10042017, focused on the online consumer electronics market, highlights the importance of having a trusted feedback platform that assists customers when making an electronics purchase decision.

Companies that received the most reviews:

B&H Photo Video is by far the most reviewed company as it received 331.992 within the last 12 months. Newegg follows on the second best most reviewed position with 86.359 reviews. Buydig received a bronze metal for its third top position with 26.111 reviews. In the forth position we found adorama with 15.635 reviews, and within our list of most reviewed electronics/computer companies is also ABT Electronics with 7.177 reviews.The Complete List

Here’s eKomi’s complete list of TOP Electronic/Computer Merchants using aggregated Google Shopping Seller Ratings from the past 12 months:

  • Earphone Solutions: Earphone Solutions – 333 Ratings & Reviews to date across Google Shopping Selling; Ratings from the past 12 months have an average Star Rating of 4.8
  • Philips: Philips.com – 4.8 Seller Rating with no Active Seller Reviews to date
  • Abt Electronics: abt.com – 7,177 Ratings & Reviews to date across Google Shopping Selling; Ratings from the past 12 months have an average Star Rating of 4.7
  • Checkout Store: checkoutstore.com – 1,105 Ratings & Reviews to date across Google Shopping Selling; Ratings from the past 12 months have an average Star Rating of 4.7
  • YesAsia: yesasia.com – 345 Ratings & Reviews to date across Google Shopping Selling; Ratings from the past 12 months have an average Star Rating of 4.7
  • B&H Photo Video: bhphotovideo.com – 331,992 Ratings & Reviews to date across Google Shopping Selling; Ratings from the past 12 months have an average Star Rating of 4.7
  • Sonic Electronics: sonicelectronics.com – 3,917 Ratings & Reviews to date across Google Shopping Selling; Ratings from the past 12 months have an average Star Rating of 4.5
  • Adorama: adorama.com – 15,635 Ratings & Reviews to date across Google Shopping Selling; Ratings from the past 12 months have an average Star Rating of 4.5
  • Newegg: newegg.com – 86,359 Ratings & Reviews to date across Google Shopping Selling; Ratings from the past 12 months have an average Star Rating of 4.4
  • BuyDig: buydig.com – 26,111 Ratings & Reviews to date across Google Shopping Selling; Ratings from the past 12 months have an average Star Rating of 4.4

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