Last updated on November 22, 2023

Image Credit: Roy Rachamim
Aimee Millwood
Director of Content at Yotpo
April 16th, 2017
Table Of Contents

The eCommerce world has become more competitive than ever.

Increasing competition is continually driving up your store’s average cost per acquisition. According to Hubspot, the current average stands at $12.

This increasing cost is troublesome for many merchants, especially if you sell items with a low order value.

There’s no doubt that user acquisition is a central part of any business’ growth strategy, but if it’s the whole story then you’re missing a crucial piece of the puzzle: customer loyalty.

Why does customer loyalty matter so much? You can take brand loyalty to the bank because these buyers will keep coming back and spend more on each visit. They will choose you over your competition every time and spread the word to their circles.

How much is customer loyalty really worth? Research shows that not only is acquiring a new user more expensive (up to seven times that of retaining a current customer), but also, returning customers spend 3x more than one-time customers. So how can you build customer loyalty to save money, time, and resources?

User-generated content: The secret to boosting customer loyalty

The best way to boost customer loyalty is to get them involved and invested in your brand. Retaining customers by building loyalty is a worthwhile investment, especially when you consider that according to the same research as above the cost of a lost customer globally can exceed $243.

By integrating user-generated content (UGC), you can encourage your current customers to do some of the heavy marketing lifting for you and contribute to a continuous loop of growing customer loyalty.

So what’s the trick? It’s actually pretty simple in principle. It’s not about changing your product, your service, or your website, it’s simply about getting customers involved in ways that are super simple to share. Create actionable opportunities for customers to share your company with their friends, thereby both endorsing your brand and increasing your exposure.

This is where UGC comes in. UGC is proven to be powerful in marketing and boosting trust, but it’s also a valuable customer loyalty tool.

How to use UGC to improve customer loyalty

Your customer’s content can foster brand loyalty by improving customer’s relationship with your brand as well as boosting exposure to bring in new customers. Here are some ideas for how to get the most out of using UGC in a customer loyalty strategy.

Get Visual: Ask customers to post Instagram photos of themselves using your product with a hashtag that you define. Create buzz by choosing a “top photo of the day” from all submissions. Soon you’ll have a flood of people showing off how they use your product to all of their friends plus it will create an “everyone else has it” halo around your company.

Make it a Competition: Some of the most successful user-generated content campaigns in the past have been driven by competition. Create a competition in which the user must create something that relates to your brand in a concrete way and make it so the winner is determined by votes. This will encourage people to share the branded content with their social networks and will get your customers personally invested in showing off your company. This will both create a feeling of affinity in your customers and easily widen your exposure.

Ask for Opinions: Surveys show that customers trust user-generated content more than any other source of information about a company – that means that good reviews are worth more than anything you might write on your own website or that any major news source might write about you. In addition to boosting trust, writing reviews makes a customer feel more attached to your company once they have vouched for it and makes them more likely to think of you when friends as for recommendations in the future.

Use reviews to keep customers on site longer: Depending on your company you might want to leverage user reviews within your website, allowing customers to read positive feedback without having to leave your site and possibly dropping out of the funnel. For example, if you sell kitchenware you want users to review your products so that potential customers don’t end up on another retailer’s site by continuing their research.

Fostering customer loyalty with UGC marketing

Don’t just leave consumer generated media floating around on the internet, your customer’s content is valuable marketing material you should use to repurpose across your marketing materials.

Re-post the content your users create via your company’s social media channels, email marketing, advertisements, and more. Get creative about how you share and show off your customer content.

Showing off customer content will help get customers excited about contributing, will make them feel connected to your brand, and is more likely to garner attention from their friends and social connections because it’s something different than just another post.

Lastly, featuring your customers’ content in your marketing shows that you appreciate them, and they’ll appreciate you in turn.


At the end of the day, user-generated content is one of the easiest ways to get your customers excited about your company and invested in your product. All you have to do to get your customers involved is simply ask them, you might be surprised by how enthusiastic they will be to participate.

These suggestions are just the beginning of how you can use user-generated content to build loyalty among existing customers and boost your brand’s online presence and reputation. If customer retention strategies and loyalty are not already a major feature of your business plan, now is the time to make the overhaul.