Food & Beverage

Hardys gathers over 1,700 reviews with in-store customer activation

The UK’s number one wine brand drove a significant volume of reviews and an increase in ratings by adopting an alternative review collection strategy.

At a Glance


As an FMCG brand, Hardys (part of Accolade Wines) didn't have many opportunities to collect consumer reviews natively.


Hardys leveraged Bazaarvoice’s expertise and strategic knowledge to help create an alternative review collection method via an activation microsite, syndicate UGC, and amplify content across social channels.


The campaign resulted in Hardys gaining over 1,700 new reviews across 15 products, a 2,300% lift in overall review volume at key retailers, and newly collected UGC integrated into social media advertising reduced cost-per-click by 60%.


lift in review volume

at key retailers

The easiest way to acquire ratings and reviews is through your website, but what do you do when you don’t have a consumer-facing site to use for this purpose? That’s the challenge many non-transactional companies face, struggling to gather user-generated content (UGC)— any images, reviews, videos, etc, created by an individual rather than a brand — as a result.

Part of the Accolade portfolio, Hardys Wines is the number one wine brand in the UK and a popular choice throughout Europe. Accolade’s dedication to quality, value, and variety has earned the brand over 9,000 awards.

Although well-loved by consumers, as an FMCG brand who have chosen to not have a direct sales channel, Hardys faced the same challenge met by other non-transactional brands, its website lacked an e-commerce storefront, and the company struggled to collect valuable user-generated content (UGC), like customer ratings and reviews. With the guidance of Bazaarvoice, Hardys launched a successful in-store campaign that led consumers to a competition microsite which drove a significant volume of reviews, an increase in ratings, and the chance to syndicate content across major retailer sites.

Hardys’ in-store campaign generated over 1,700 product reviews

With strategic direction from Bazaarvoice, Hardys launched a successful in-store campaign that resulted in a collection of over 1,700 reviews across 15 different products. Most of Hardys’ customers access the products offline, so an in-store promotion made the most sense for reaching the end consumer. Hardys partnered with Learning with Experts to offer free online lessons and lifestyle interest skills to shoppers who reviewed their favorite wine.

The campaign was masterminded by F&BM who designed bespoke neck flags which directed shoppers who purchased a bottle of wine to a competition microsite that prompted them to fill out a review submission form. Reviews were then moderated, collected, and published via the Bazaarvoice Ratings & Reviews platform. The campaign led to over 2,500 website entries, while at the same time, reviewers claimed over 1,100 courses with ‘Learning with Experts’.

“The Taste, Tell, Win campaign gave our shoppers the reassurance that they were buying a tried and trusted product. This was highlighted in our strong online performance, where we grew our share of Hardys across key retailers. Using reviews from Hardys shoppers was a really powerful tool for driving the rate of sale — something we will leverage even further in our future campaigns,” said Thomas Joyce-Brown, Head of Trade Marketing, Europe.

Review syndication lead to a 2,300% volume lift

Hardys leveraged the Bazaarvoice Network to syndicate reviews across key retailers, including Tesco and Asda, resulting in a 2,300% lift in review volume. According to the Shopper Experience Index, star ratings and the number of reviews impact a shopper’s confidence in a brand. For instance, on Sainsbury’s website alone, Hardys saw a 57% increase in review volume and ensured that every stock keeping unit (SKU) contained reviews.

Approximately 42% of shoppers surveyed by Bazaarvoice are most likely to be influenced by the star rating of a product when making a purchasing decision. It’s the second-highest factor affecting consumer confidence, just slightly behind the number of reviews at 46%. Review syndication is an essential tool for boosting star ratings because it increases the volume of reviews and, therefore, the rating of the products.

Image source: Asda


With review syndication, Hardys products saw an increase in star ratings, from 4.32  to 4.59. Now, when a shopper sorts products on a retail website by “4.5 stars and up,” Hardys is guaranteed a spot on the results page. This boost in ratings means higher visibility and increased brand confidence.

UGC within advertising improved marketing effectiveness

Pivoting from past social media advertising strategies, Hardys integrated the UGC that they collected directly into their paid ads and saw increased engagement and ad spend savings. The new ads combined quotes from customer reviews, star ratings, and cinemagraph-style animated visuals to create aesthetically pleasing and informative content.

With a modest budget, these ads directed 10,000 clicks towards retail partner sites and decreased the cost-per-click by 60%. Considering 61% of shoppers surveyed by Bazaarvoice shop products they discover through their feed –  the increase in engagement and brand awareness has helped to maintain Hardys as the number one wine brand in the UK. .

Offline UGC collection: A strong strategy for non-transactional brands

With Bazaarvoice’s tools and guidance, Hardys launched a powerful in-store campaign designed to boost its review volume, increase brand awareness, and collect valuable UGC. What’s next for the UK’s number one wine brand?

“This campaign has been a great example of how we’ve used the power of our brilliant consumers’ reviews, and we’ll be looking to leverage them further in the future. Watch this space!” said Dell.  

Want to see how you too can boost review volume, increase brand awareness, and collect valuable UGC?  Request a demo here.

Products featured:


lift in review volume

at key retailers

About the company

Part of the Accolade portfolio, Hardys Wines is the number one wine brand in the UK and a popular choice throughout Europe. Accolade’s dedication to quality, value, and variety has earned the brand over 9,000 awards.

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We've captured a lot of reviews that we can use in our marketing collateral, and we're really pleased to report that it has led to an increase in advertising effectiveness in the form of better cost-per-click and more engagement.

Alister Dell

Digital Marketing Manager, Hardys

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