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Do Men and Women View Online Reviews Differently?

by Brandon Lee
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If you’re running a business, it’s part of your job to understand the perception of your business from your customers. Not only does this help to improve your customers’ user experience, but it increases your probability of having your business accrue more positive reviews.

It’s a proven fact that people regularly consult online reviews before they make a purchase. In fact, 97% of customers read online reviews before making a purchasing decision, according to BrightLocal.

However, Jamie Pitman from BrightLocal reported that there is a huge difference in how men and women interpret online reviews. Check out these interesting findings below.

37% of Men Check Online Reviews No Matter What

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Local Consumer Review Survey from BrightLocal (2018)

Before this study, there haven’t been any research-driven indications of how different genders might use online reviews, but BrightLocal has discovered some key differences in this behavior.

While both men and women said they have regularly viewed reviews for online businesses, there’s a large gap between men and women who always look at reviews.

As you can see from the graph above, 37% of men always look at reviews for online businesses, compared to a meager 15% of women.

If your business targets a predominantly male audience, then it’s important to use your time and effort into securing high-quality reviews. Though, while men are always keen on targeting online reviews, prior research from BrightLocal explains that people don’t care about reviews left over three months ago.

44% of Women Have Never Been Asked to Leave a Customer Review

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In the chart above, it shows that men are much more likely to leave a review after they’ve been asked compared to women. However, there is something very alarming about this chart in particular.

Take a look at the condition “No, I’ve never been asked”. As you can see, 44% of women have never been asked to leave a customer review. While we can’t really explain why this occurrence is happening, there is a big factor that is hindering the growth of reviews posted by women.

One preconceived reason behind this may be that businesses find men more approachable when asking for a review. You can see on the chart that men are much more likely to leave a review if you simply ask them.

Nonetheless, by not asking women to leave reviews for your business, you’re missing out on a 37% chance that they actually will do it. This is a huge wide-open opportunity to get more reviews for your business by simply asking a woman to post one.

63% of Women Believe Negative Reviews Should Get Responses

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When it comes down to the type of reviews consumers believe businesses should respond to, the results get a little hectic. For example, I was a little surprised to see that nearly 30% of men and women believe businesses should respond to fake reviews.

The major takeaway here is how both genders value responses for both positive and negative reviews. 63% of females prefer businesses to respond to negative reviews, while 58% of males believe businesses should respond to positive ones.


So, what I can actually do with this data? Well, if you’re catering to a male audience, you can make sure that you develop a strong focus on your reputation management. According to the data above, men care about both reviews and their responses.

On the contrary, if you have a largely female audience, you can simply ask them to post more reviews to receive a higher probability of increasing your star rating if you’re providing excellent products and services.

Overall, men and women shouldn’t be treated differently when it comes to getting reviews. Though, this data indicates a few behavioral patterns for both genders that can be extremely helpful to developing your online reputation.

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