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What is User Generated Content and Why Should Amazon Sellers Care?

The world is increasingly cluttered with ads and promotional messages. Here’s how to use UGC to give buyers the authenticity they crave!

  • November 3, 2023
  • /
  • Chuck Kessler
A dark haired young woman modeling a brown sweater while conducting a live stream in front of a mirror and a round ring light

Amazon sellers know that the path to the Buy Box travels directly through positive customer reviews.

Great results on Amazon’s marketplace are often the result of an ecommerce flywheel effect where the smallest changes can very quickly – and exponentially – have an enormous effect on your conversion rate. Of course, that’s going to have a multiplying effect on your overall sales which in turn, boosts your conversion rate even further.

Amazon riches, and your new supercar can be the exciting end result of your ability to scale up this process. 

The important question is how to create a strong enough connection between your product catalog and shoppers that first, they become buyers, and second, they feel so connected to your brand that they’re inspired to leave a great review. 

Increasingly, the answer to both of these questions has become the rise of micro influencers and user generated content (or UGC) in Amazon marketing strategy.

Recent research has shown that user generated content more often leads to sales when compared to brand-generated content. Increases in conversion rates confirm that research. In a Forbes report, it was found that after incorporating UGC into their websites, brands’ conversion rates rose by an average of 29%.

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What is User Generated Content (UGC)

User-generated content is nothing more than time-tested word-of-mouth marketing that’s been rebranded and updated for the digital age.

UGC is any form of content—be it a photo, video, testimonial, tweet, or even a simple comment—that is created by people, rather than brands, and is shared predominantly through social media posts, blog articles, and online reviews.

It’s the authentic voice of the customer, echoing their experiences, opinions, and insights about a product or service.

A young dark haired woman sitting at a table, in fron of an open laptop posed with her open hand uner her chin looking at the camera

Who is Sharing All This UGC? Micro Influencers, That’s Who

Influencers, but maybe not the kind you’re thinking about. 

Influencer marketing and social selling are both on the rise. Findings show that spending on U.S. influencer marketing is expected to rise by 12%, with totals of $4 billion being spent. 

We’ve reached a point where before making a purchase, more than half of shoppers report that they are searching for advice or input before making a purchase.

A lot of that searching involves social networks.

However, it’s not Kardashian-sized influencers that are driving all of this lead generation. Increasingly, it’s much smaller, micro influencers with audiences that range from 1,000 – 10,000 followers that build these relationships. 

Don’t make the mistake of looking past their relatively meager reach. Studies continue to show that their hyper-devoted followers lead to correspondingly high engagement rates and have made them a go-to resource for brands wanting to hop on an UGC rocketship. 

The following statistic helps punctuate this fact. At the present time, 77% of all brand partnerships are with micro-influencers using UGC to drive their message home. 

The Rise of User Generated Content 

Back in the early days of the internet – when it was a playground for tech enthusiasts – content was primarily produced by a select few, often businesses and professionals who understood the digital terrain. 

But as the World Wide Web expanded its horizons, a seismic shift started taking form.

Fast forward to today, and the significance of UGC in the digital marketing landscape can’t be overstated. In a world cluttered with ads and promotional messages, consumers have developed an uncanny ability to filter out the noise. 

They crave authenticity, and a genuine connection that goes beyond the glossy veneer of traditional advertising. And what could be more authentic than content crafted by fellow consumers? UGC has emerged not just as another marketing tool, but as a pivotal force driving trust, engagement, and brand loyalty.

It’s probably no surprise that most of that new content has come from social selling tools such as Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok. 

A variety of round social media logos against a blue background

How Social Media Platforms Have Popularized UGC

Over the last few years, social commerce has exploded, with a big part of the momentum coming from social media posts that help drive discovery and sales of your products where people are already actively shopping.

Social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook don’t just connect people, they provide the tools and stage that allows everyone to be a creator.

Instagram, with its visually-driven format, became the epicenter for lifestyle showcases. Users began sharing snippets of their lives—from their morning coffee routines to the latest fashion finds. Brands quickly caught onto this, realizing that every Instagram post made by a user showcasing their product was a genuine, unpaid endorsement. 

It was marketing gold.

Meanwhile, there’s Facebook, with its vast user base. Today more than 1 in 3 people on Facebook in the US use Facebook Marketplace each month to buy and sell things. 

Meanwhile over at rapidly-growing TikTok, their new TikTok Shop allows merchants to sell products to audiences directly on TikTok through video content, LIVE streams, and a product showcase profile tab.

A young dark haired woman showing off a peach colored sweater in front of a livestreaming smartphone set up

Creating Your Own User Generated Content

User generated videos have exploded in popularity and have proven to be hugely effective tools in all forms of digital marketing. It’s no different with Amazon product videos. If you want to catch shoppers’ attention and keep them engaged, UGC videos allow you to take the power of lifestyle or “how to” videos and add a crucial “authentic” element.  

All it takes is a quick look at TikTok, or Instagram’s Reels formats to see the impact of UGC.

UGC Amazon Product Videos

As an Amazon seller, whether it’s something that you’ve created or was sent to you by a happy buyer, your UGC content helps give buyers a relaxed, but in-depth look at the product they’re thinking of purchasing. It might be as simple as a video helping them understand how the product works, or it could take the form of existing customer testimonials. 

In either case there’s no better way to build social proof, and increase customer trust and loyalty.

Supercharge the Amazon Q & A Section With ‍UGC 

Consider for a moment Amazon’s dedicated Q&A section located below the product information. That’s where potential buyers can ask questions and receive authentic insights from previous purchasers. 

As an Amazon seller, this is a perfect place to try to increase sales by answering questions a potential customer might have. I know that in many cases, that’s where I look first if I’m unsure about what a product might do, or what’s included in the packaging.

Amazon sellers can now post short videos in this section. There’s no better way to build an authentic, brand voice, and establish inestimable social proof while simply answering shoppers questions.

Lower arms and hands shown typing on a laptop on a wooden table top

Level Up Your Email Marketing with UGC

UGC, with its inherent authenticity is social magnet. When users see content from real people, they pause, relate, and engage.

The magical qualities of UGC doesn’t stop at websites or social platforms. It also amplifies the power of email marketing campaigns. 

Picture this: An email lands in your inbox. Instead of the usual promotional jargon, it showcases real stories, testimonials, or user photos of a product you’ve shown interest in. The connection is instant.

UGC not only boosts email open rates but also generates genuine engagement, transforming casual readers into potential buyers.

How Canopy Management Can Help

This year, almost 75% of U.S. marketers indicate that they plan to use content creators as part of their marketing mix. It’s estimated that the number will grow to 90% by 2026. 

Between the UGC that you should probably be creating yourself and the content produced by the niche influencers that will continue to expand as an ecommerce lever, user-generated content is almost certain to skyrocket in importance over the coming 12 months.  

Think of it as a kind of second wave of Amazon product optimization. Most sellers wouldn’t think of launching an Amazon product if the listing wasn’t carefully optimized. In 2024, UGC might become a part of listing optimization 2.0. An opportunity to fully “modernize” your listing. 

If you’d like to get a running start, reach out to the full service Amazon listing optimization experts at Canopy Management. Canopy has extensive experience with the latest video formats and are able to make sure that you’re not leaving money – or technology – on the table.  

Canopy Management is a full-service marketing agency for Amazon and Walmart sellers. Our team consists of former Amazonians, multi-million dollar sellers, and award-winning experts. 

When you consider the many ways that Canopy Management can help you grow your business, you’ll see why selling on Amazon is much easier “under the Canopy.”

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