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I have been presented with the problem of rebuilding the reviews section of a Product page.

The Problem: I am afraid of affecting negatively my users' trust by allowing an automatic system to select the reviews. Are there any best practices (recommendations and/or research) that can guide me on making the best decisions to maintain a high level of trust or even increase it?

Assumptions: I intend to introduce a system that will automatically select the best reviews. The system will organise the user reviews based on how helpful other uses found them. The user is currently having to dig through an extensive amount of reviews and the interface does not guide the user in it's task of finding the most useful reviews.

Desired outcome: I would like help my users in finding the most useful recommendations without having to dig into the content for very long.

The following image displays the current way that reviews are being displayed. enter image description here

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as far as I know trust is a multidimensional construct (covering the dimensions of competence, benevolence and integrity) and therefore quite hard to grasp. That could explain why I couldn’t find any research related your particular question.

With regarding to any UX related topic that hasn’t been empirically proven I always stick to practically proven solutions.

E.g., you could follow Amazon's approach by offering different ways to compare reviews by sorting or rating methods. Doing so, you could try to cover a wide range of techniques which eventually help people to figure out what and whom to trust.

Example of Amazon Rating and Review

Edit:
I’ve asked users which kind of review status they trust the most: Staff Pick, Top Commenter, This review received X upvotes, X of Y people found the following review helpful. 14 out of 19 users chose the latter option, because

„real people found [it] useful“ and „[it] lends credibility“.

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