A plain old product review
April 25, 2018
A plain old product review
Score 9 out of 10
Overall Satisfaction with TrustRadius for Buyers
My role includes matching software solutions to business requirements, so it's important to be able to quickly evaluate products on the market. I manage and develop Salesforce and integrations between our Salesforce platform and other applications for finance, marketing, data collection and analysis, and a handful of frontend web apps for customers. I work alongside a system admin, a web developer, and multiple data analysts, all reporting to a project manager.
- To understand my options (i.e. build my short list or long list)
- To compare products
- To determine what to ask a vendor
- To validate vendor claims
- To confirm my decision
- To find evidence to support my recommendation to colleagues or my client
- To see what other users think of the product I am currently using
The UX and organization of TrustRadius that makes it easy for me to find what I need and to ignore what I don't need. Review sites are usually an overwhelming blizzard of info, or too simplistic. At the very beginning of reviewing a category, the TrustRadius map of products is a great way to start, and I can configure it for the company size that matches mine. I usually don't need to read the context section, but I find it helpful to know it's there when I need orientation, and the hovering ToC to the left of it is great UX. The Reviews dropdown in the menu bar lets me keep track of recently viewed, and lets me set up a comparison at will. And all of this is very intuitively designed, so I don't feel like I'm getting lost.
I skim reviews, looking for patterns of positive or negative experience, so short reviews with one or two concrete details are the most helpful. I'll stop for long reviews if it describes an interesting or unique situation that is relevant to my own business requirements. Reviews that are 'clever' or 'catchy' are more distracting and less helpful.
As an IT professional, I've been using online reviews to evaluate products for over ten years. As a consumer, it's been much longer than that. It's difficult to imagine supporting a purchasing decision in these times without using online reviews. That said, I'm aware that there are a lot of junk reviews out there, either due to QC issues or paid reviews. Knowing this, I try to proceed cautiously and take reviews and star ratings with a grain of salt. I use proxy signals to judge the quality of a review site or a review. Site age and quality of design, for example, or writing quality. Higher and more consistent quality of design and content is costly as a rule, and difficult to fake, so these can be good indicators that the people behind a site are investing themselves in the brand, and not just a passive income generator.
- Site design: great UX
- Helpful organization of categories
- Good content on the B2B review ecosystem
- Would love to see more vertical-specific categories
- Category overview content could use links to relevant resources where I can continue to educate myself on the category
- The ability to request reviews of specific products
I usually just google the product names I'm looking for, and hop around reading various results. Before TrustRadius, I didn't have a specific go-to site for reviews.
Yes, reviews gave me ideas for more specific questions to ask when vetting products and service plans.
TrustRadius is helpful and easy to use, and I believe that there's an investment in maintaining the quality of the site, content, and most importantly the reviews. Product reviews are vulnerable to this issue of trust, since there are many incentives for businesses to make or pay for fake reviews. If TrustRadius could take an even more explicit approach to handling this problem, I would feel more compelled to come back often.