Polina is an undergraduate student at Belarusian State Economic University (BSEU) where she is studying at the faculty of International Business Communication for a degree specializing in Intercultural Communication. In her spare time she enjoys drawing, music and travelling.
The blockchain technology is expected to transform the current consumer reviews industry, ensuring authenticity and credibility of online ratings.
In today’s digital world, online reviews are getting more important both for consumers and businesses. While being a powerful marketing tool for brands, they guide customers across a wide range of products and services available in the market.
Most customers are heavily influenced by reviews and look through them before making a purchase decision. According to the last year’s research by BrightLocal, 84% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, whilst 87% of potential customers won’t even consider businesses with low ratings. In fact, only a small percentage of people never read any reviews.
However, there are a number of issues the industry is often criticized for.
Current Problems of the Review Industry
Fake online recommendations have been one of the serious problems within the industry, making it hard for people to trust review websites. The demand for positive feedback is extremely high, given the customers’ reliance on online reviews. A negative comment can result in a loss of not only existing consumers but also potential ones. Businesses are often paying for positive feedback in order to gain credibility and boost sales. There are dozens of job offerings across the internet offering compensation for such posts.
In a fight against fake reviews, Google Play Store announced last year it would crack down on fake app ratings. Two years ago, online retailer giant Amazon sued 1,000 people who reportedly left inappropriate reviews on the company’s website.
When it comes to negative comments, they are generally deleted by companies fearing to damage their reputation. This, however, makes review platforms less valuable for users. Due to the current problems, it is rather difficult to develop a platform that encourages legitimate reviews and prevents fraudulent actions.
How Revain Will Change the Review Model
Revain, a Russia-based startup, aims to transform the current review market, addressing its main issues. Unlike other review platforms, Revain doesn’t allow users to delete posts and rewards authors for creating reviews. The company describes itself as a new generation feedback platform powered by the Ethereum blockchain technology.
The system provides an increased transparency with a single source of data that can’t be changed by anyone. By using blockchain, Revain offers verifiability of the reviews and guarantees their immutability. Besides, it leverages IBM Watson’s Tone Analyzer and Natural Language Understanding to provide the automatic filtration system. It determines the emotional content of the postings and tracks the user’s geolocation, past activity, and other factors.
The platform will feature two types of tokens: an RVN token and an R-token. The first one will be used for transactions within the system, while the second will be traded on exchanges and will serve as a reward for creating quality reviews. The tokens can also be exchanged between each other. While the value of R token will depend on market volatility and other factors, RVN token will have a fixed price of 0.0001 BTC.
Initially, the platform will be dedicated to reviews about ICOs and digital currency exchanges, but will later expand to hotels, restaurants, e-commerce, gaming and other industries.
Last month, Revain completed a crowdsale, raising a total of 2108 BTC or more than $9 million at the current exchange rate. The half of the raised sum was gained in just one day since the launch of the token sale.
Yesterday, the company announced the launch of its R-token on a cryptocurrency exchange Mercatox, so token holders can already start trading via the platform.
“We are happy that our negotiations efforts finally starts to pay off and expecting to be added to major crypto exchanges over the course of the next couple of weeks,” the company said in a blog post.
Earlier, Revain unveiled it is in talks with several cryptocurrency exchanges, including Bittrex, Gatecoin, DABTC, Kraken, Livecoin, Btcchina, Okcoin, Bitfinex, and Poloniex. The release of the platform is planned for the fourth quarter of 2017.