SANTA MONICA, Calif. — Edmunds.com, the car shopping and automotive information site, has been named — along with TripAdvisor, Zagat and OpenTable — one of the most trusted prominent online review sites, according to Maritz Research’s 2013 Online Customer Review Study.
The study examined 13 high-profile ratings sites. Edmunds.com was the only automotive site listed in the top 10 and it ranked fourth overall, outperforming Yelp, Google+, Hotels.com, City Search and others. DealerRater was named as the 13th most trusted site in the study, although it was noted the sample size was low.
TripAdvisor and Zagat ranked the highest with 59 percent of consumers reporting they trust those sites, Open Table was No. 3 with 56 percent trust rate, and Edmunds was No. 4 with 54 percent of visitors reporting to trust the site.
“Maritz Research’s study concluded that there is a healthy skepticism for reviews posted online in general. With full appreciation for the fraudulent activity in this area, we at Edmunds.com will always take very deliberate and proactive steps to ensure that the user-generated content on our site is as trustworthy as our professional car reviews, consumer advice expertise and other materials appreciated by car-shoppers and honest businesspeople around the country,” said Edmunds.com President and Chief Operating Officer Seth Berkowitz.
The news comes on the heels of Edmunds.com’s August announcement that it reached a settlement agreement with Humankind Design Ltd., whose proprietors attempted to register more than 2,000 fake accounts on the Edmunds.com site and tried to use them to create fraudulent content to sway car shoppers’ opinions on Edmunds.com’s dealer ratings and reviews pages.