5 Ways to Spot Fake Google Reviews
First of all we need to make sure we are all on the same page of knowing what a fake google review is. Fake News? Fake reviews are people reviewing a business, company, or product that they’ve never even had. They haven’t tested or even purchased the product for which they are leaving a review for. A lot of the time we may think of a fake review as someone writing something nasty because they don’t like a person or a company. However, business also work this to their advantage by having friends and family write fake positive reviews for their company to boost their rankings or their sales. Now that we know what a fake google review is, let’s show you how to spot them!
- Generic Comments
We all know those reviews that good literally fit any product. “Would buy again” “Amazing Product, Amazing Company” “Great overall experience, would highly recommend!”.
Companies that pay people to leave reviews often give those people certain guidelines or templates so they can know what to say. Often these reviews are very generic and could fit any company and any item being sold. They usually contain a lot of keywords about the company and the product and will end in a sign off like “thanks so much [insert company name]”
If it seems ingenuine and not authentic, then it is probably a fake google review paid for by the company.
- Other fake reviews by the same reviewer
If you are questioning a google review go see what other products that reviewer has been reviewing. You can go to their profile and see if they are leaving really generic reviews for other business. Many times they will be those same generic reviews and they tend to be worded exactly the same with little to no variation.
Also if they have reviews all over the country for different companies it may be suspicious. If they left a review for a painter in Philadelphia who did an awesome job on their remodel, and also left a review for a contractor in Las Vegas, they are probably writing fake google reviews.
- False information
If you are reading the reviews on a product and they are making no sense at all to you, it might be mistake. There are hundreds of businesses in the world named nearly the same thing. It is very possible that someone left a review for “Petersson Painting” when they thought they were actually leaving a review for “Peterson Painting”. These weren’t meant to be malicious in spreading false information, they were just people who made a mistake and accidentally left the wrong review on the wrong business page.
- Customer is not in your database
This one is pretty simple, you look at the name of the reviewer and they aren’t one of your customers! You should always check the name against your database to see if the person reviewing the product purchased. If they have a screen name there are ways you can look at the dates and people that purchased to see If it could possibly be them. You should reply to these reviews and ask the person to provide their name, what they ordered or a confirmation of the order so you can know for sure if this person is real or leaving fake google review.
If someone is being paid to leave fake reviews they probably haven’t been doing it for a very long time. A glance at their profile can give us better insight to if they are paid, or they are really someone who loves to leave reviews. If In the last week they have had dinner at 9 different restaurants in 9 different states, and been to 3 all inclusive resorts in Cancun, it may be questionable. A person doesn’t get their hair cut from 5 different barber shops in 3 days, or have 12 plumbers all come to check on their leaky faucet. This is a quick way you can go in and spot a fake google review.
How to remove a fake google review
If have some solid evidence that a review on your page is fake there are a couple of things you can do. You can flag the review; this will make google review it if the following things are present.
If there is in inappropriate, vulgar language or hate speech.
It is written by someone who may be related, an ex-employee or a friend of the company or the competitor as well.
It is written by someone who never has even used the product or the service they are reviewing.
How to flag a fake review.
- Log into your Google My Business page
- Navigate to the reviews section
- Click the home menu, and then select Support
- You can then select a preferred method of contact, phone or email
- You will be asked to fill out some info. Send in a screenshot of the reviews that you are questioning.
- Submit the complaint and you should hear back I the next 1 or 2 days if this is a fake review or not.
Will Google catch all the fake reviews?
No. In all honesty, sometimes there are good fakes out there and google might miss a few. If you have a negative review you should really try reaching out to the commenter and seeing what you could do personally to make their experience better. If it turns out to be a negative review, then maybe there is something you can do to fix the issue and have them take their review down.
If you try everything and still can’t google to take down the false review. Then get out there and get some more positive reviews. Incentive your good customers to go online and leave a good review. If the good outweighs the bad then most people will see right past those fake google reviews and your company will hold its good name!
Now that you know what a fake google review is and how to find it, go make sure no one has left any fake reviews on your business page!