As many consumers from all parts of the world, Chinese consumers turn to blogs and forums for product reviews before they buy.
Reviews from popular bloggers or active members of a forum often matter a lot in consumers’ decision making; however, many consumers are not aware their favorite bloggers could be as well a stranger to the product or service herself.
Update (16 June 2021): blogs are no longer popular in China with the popularity of Weibo and other social media platforms. Users can post long articles on Weibo, Bilibili, Zhihu, Douban, Baidu Tieba, or other online forums. But this article is still valid and only the media is different.
A 27 year old girl Xu Shan (alias) quit her job about a year ago turning into a full-time blogger and making around 5000 yuan per month.
XUSHAN used to work for AUPRES (a cosmetic brand) and is very familiar with cosmetic products. She shared tips and insights on different cosmetic products. As the quality of her blog posts is generally high, her blog gradually became popular. She quit her job and became a full-time blogger last May.
According to Xu Shan, it’s not easy to get a “customer” to pay for blog posts. The total page views have to be at least one million. Her blog has accumulated over 1.5 million page views at the end of last Oct when she received her first payment – 200 yuan for a post about 800 characters.
Now Xu Shan charge on average 500 yuan (US$73) for one blog post. She shared that the key to success in blogging is to write high quality post to gain popularity.
She also shared that she did NOT try the product before she blogged about it. The post was written according to the resources that companies provide her.
Xu Shan is not worried about the product quality at all though she admit that many bloggers just publish the product review without ever trying them. She only writes for well-known brands and the chance of readers having a problem with the product will be very low.
Sometimes Chinese bloggers share negative review about a product as well when paid by its competitors.
Most Chinese blogs are judged by the total page views, the number of visitors, and comments. Sometimes Alexa ranking, Google PageRank, and back links are counted as well. Normally it costs about 200 yuan per post and well known bloggers ask for thousands; sometimes over 10,000 yuan per post.