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Reddit’s Influence On Consumer Purchasing Decisions


Reddit Influence On Consumer Purchasing Decisions

When it comes to online shopping, recommendations reign supreme and offer more value to consumers than ever before. Especially considering that influencer trust dwindles and goes through phases of erosion as with anything else. This shifting sentiment is what’s helped pave the way for Reddit to become the number one internet destination for reviews by real people who focus on helping others make purchasing decisions. 

The platform is home to a whopping 16 billion comments and posts, hosting the largest internet archives of recommendations and consumer conversations. Thanks to the platform’s community-first approach it offers shoppers individualized and unique advice, which is quite a shift from social media, AI, and influencer one-size-fits-all reviews.

At CES 2024, Reddit released a research document highlighting the importance of trustworthy recommendations on consumer purchasing decisions. In this article, we’ll break down the report and focus on some of the key takeaways. 

Report: Reddits Influence On Consumer Purchasing Decisions

About Reddit

Reddit is a forum-style social media network that fosters conversations and engagement between users. Users can create posts in genre or topic-based communities referred to as subreddits, and interact with other users in the threads and comments. Every thread has an original poster (OP) who starts the conversation. Redditors are also able to upvote or downvote people’s replies which has an overall effect on a user’s social score known as Karma. 


To compile the report, Reddit analyzed millions of comments, posts, and threads across thousands of verticals and subreddit niche communities. They further supplemented their analysis by conducting two separate consumer surveys with a total of 11,000 respondents.

The report focused on the following verticals: consumer electronics, alcohol and drinks, auto, and beauty. Reddit has stated that they will be releasing a follow-up report that covers credit cards, travel, education, and food subscriptions soon. 

The data pulled from the analysis was then further complemented by two key research studies that contain important metrics and data on 1.000 United States social media users over the age of 18. The analysis incorporated two studies:

● Reddit Recommends Study: Reddit Custom Survey, US, UK, AUS, CA, DE, Online Recommendations, n=4,000, A18+, Monthly Social Media Users, March 2023.

● Vertical Path to Purchase Study: Reddit Custom Survey, US, Let’s talk about your purchases & Social Media, n=8000, A18+, Monthly Social Media Users, June-August 2023.

Key Takeaways

As some consumers begin to lose faith in AI and influencer recommendations we can begin to see a clear shift to real-world shopping advice. 

  • Twice as many social media users from the Gen Z cohort (18-26) stated they will undoubtedly rely on influencer recommendations less vs. more over the span of the next five years. 
  • Even though 40% of social media users said they first heard of a product or service through an influencer recommendation or targeted advert, they felt that the tech driving the algorithmic recommendations was impersonal and unsafe.
  • Over half of the respondents stated that the Amazon review system was full of bot comments and fake reviews. 

The Recommendation Journey for Products research report found that reviews on Reddit threads play a major role in swaying consumer purchasing behavior across the entire sales funnel. From the discovery phase all the way to consideration and final purchase decision, no matter what vertical. 

  • Consumer electronic reviews in the discovery phase accounted for 17% of recommendations.‍

The report found that marketers can leverage the queries by understanding how users are searching for solutions or personalized advice. This can help pave the way for brands to engage directly with prospective clients by answering their questions and engaging in active conversations.

  • The data speaks for itself, with 38% of non-tech-savvy Reddit users creating posts that start with their situational needs. For example “I have no idea what to look for” or “ I am new to this” are post queries seen across all verticals as a way for users to ask for recommendations and technical guidance from communities. 

The types of posts seem to follow a precise pattern for the situation, budget, and product needed. For instance, “laptop for work” or “budget keyboard”.

  • On the other hand, the report found that tech-savvy Redditors were able to vocalize their pain point and had posted with hopes of finding other product users who had encountered the same error and had troubleshot the issue successfully. 50% wanted advice on upgrading a product, 31% were searching for reviews on replacing a broken product, and 19% wanted help with a product not working as it should have.

Conversations in the consideration stage accounted for 53% of all mentions. This is when consumers are searching for first-hand accounts and in-depth advice before making a purchase. 

Further key metrics show:

  • 74% of Redditors stated that the platform helps them to challenge their thinking and views thanks to the back-and-forth discussions and forum-style interactions. This helps to challenge opposing viewpoints. 
  • 90% of users stated that they’re more open to new ideas or viewpoints found on Reddit when compared to other social media platforms. 
  • 79% of respondents also stated that they were more open to brands engaging directly with prospective consumers by sharing information about their products when compared to the same exchange on a different platform. 

The report goes on to claim that in 2023 alone, internet users added the word “Reddit” to their Google searchers over 32 billion times, showing that people are searching for real reviews and insights, as opposed to curated influencer advertorials, and bot-riddled Amazon product reviews.

“This growing behavior shows that the conversations happening within online communities – which are full of real people, speaking from their own experience and without any kind of ulterior motive or incentive – are often the most valued search result.”

What This Means For Marketers and Brands

Reviews and recommendations on Reddit are happening in detail and at scale, allowing for the perfect ecosystem of community-driven trust and engagements. Here are three ways that marketers and brands can leverage this newfound information:

  • Consider Reddit as part of your marketing strategy. Users are looking for input and answers, meaning that they’re open to receiving direct information from brands. You need to show up in order to leverage those opportunities. 
  • Engage with users at the right time. This means that you’ll need to understand what phase of the funnel the prospective consumer is at and cater your responses to the advice they’re currently seeking. For example, in the consumer electronics vertical the main product consideration phase comes down to nuanced user needs and specific features, you can help Redditors navigate these queries to feel confident with detailed and guided information. 
  • When it comes to high-ticket items such as new car purchases make sure to use data and testimonials that show how real users have enjoyed and been satisfied with their purchase decisions. 


Now that you know that social media users are turning to Reddit to have more meaningful and informative conversations instead of sticking to the popular yet highly curated review systems of other platforms you can adapt your marketing strategy to leverage this untapped opportunity.

Community-driven advice fueled by passionate humans offers a more personalized experience, offering guidance that others can actually follow and that is more importantly trustworthy. 

“For marketers, the fact that users now proactively seek recommendations via human-to-human conversations in interest-based communities means a huge opportunity. Brands can connect with users in the right context and offer the right details in helpful, authentic ways where conversations are already happening organically.”

If you’re interested in reading the full report you can find it here: Reddit Report.

Romilly Anne Glenton

Romilly A. Glenton is a Spain-based writer with a deep passion for the influencer economy and creator space. Her writings offer insightful perspectives on digital trends and the evolving landscape of social media influencers. Living in the heart of Spain, Romilly's work is infused with a unique blend of traditional cultural insights and modern digital developments. She skillfully dissects viral trends and influencer marketing strategies, making complex topics accessible and engaging. Her articles are not just informative, but a reflection of her own journey through the rapidly changing digital world. When she's not writing, Romilly enjoys exploring Spain's rich culture, drawing inspiration for her insightful pieces.

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