ROPO is about visibility on the web and on social media. First and most important, it's about visibility on the search engines Google and Bing, because here most people start their "shopping journey" and let consumers decide for themselves whether the purchase and payment takes place online or offline - just like with social selling.
One can be looking for specific Nike running shoes, toner for a printer or a "good" divorce lawyer. Over 80% start by searching on Google.
Even though we search for a specific product name or service, our subconscious at the same time says "choose safely - avoid being cheated" and therefore recommendations - or other customer reviews - have had a really big impact - not to say most - on which link we click on in the search result. In other words, showing stars - review snippets - in the search results on Google - has great psychological significance and signals the credibility, security and trust that for most consumers is more important than the product or service they are looking for.