From food to fashion: What consumers love in social media reviews
September 7th, 2023, Janice Fernandes

From food to fashion: What consumers love in social media reviews

Social media platforms like YouTube, Instagram and TikTok have become go-to sources for entertainment and information on food, clothing, gadgets and cosmetics, among others. In this piece we ask consumers across 18 international markets about the types of products for which they have watched reviews on social media in the last three months.

Food is the most popular genre when it comes to watching product reviews on social media (27%). Clothing or shoes reviews also register a significant interest (27%). Close behind, gadgets/electronics and makeup/skincare product reviews have also grabbed the attention of 26% and 21% of individuals, respectively.

Around one in five consumers have watched hotel or airline reviews in the last three months, while cars and video games register 18% and 16% of consumers, respectively. On average, consumers across all markets are least likely to check social media reviews for tools and toys, with 11% and 10% indicating their interest in these categories, respectively.

Needless to say, regional variations exist across each product category. When it comes to food reviews, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) leads the pack, with over half of consumers (56%) there consuming food product reviews on platforms like YouTube, Instagram and TikTok.

India and Indonesia closely follow, with both markets reporting a significant share of consumers (53% each) who have tuned in to food-related reviews on social media in the last three months. Other APAC markets fall further behind with around two-fifths of Singapore consumers (42%) and nearly half that share of Australians (22%) saying the same.

Turning our attention to North America reveals that while 52% of urban Mexicans say they have watched food reviews on social media in the last three months, consumers in the neighboring markets are less likely to agree. Canadians are as likely as the global average to say they have turned to social media to watch food reviews (26% and 27% respectively). However, in the United States, fewer than a fifth of consumers (16%) have watched food product reviews on social media.

Great Britain also shows relatively lower engagement, with 13% of consumers indicating they have watched food product reviews on social media. This places Britain well below the overall average. Only in Denmark (12%) are consumers less likely to engage with food product reviews.

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Methodology: YouGov Surveys: Serviced provide quick survey results from nationally representative or targeted audiences in multiple markets. The data is based on surveys of adults aged 18+ years in 18 markets with sample sizes varying between 437 and 2,045 for each market. All surveys were conducted online in June 2023. Data from each market uses a nationally representative sample apart from Mexico and India, which use urban representative samples, and Indonesia and Hong Kong, which use online representative samples. Learn more about YouGov Surveys: Serviced.

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