New research shows the majority of consumers now trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. Reviews are now more influential than ever before. This means businesses must take steps to ensure that their reviews are all real, and not fabricated by competitors or trolls.
In this article, we’ll discuss fake online reviews, the usual causes of fake online reviews, what you should be looking for if you think a review might be fake, and how you can prevent false reviews from happening to your business.
What Are Fake Online Reviews?
Fake reviews are made-up reviews. They are not the same as fraudulent reviews that are written by the seller themselves or their family members. Fake reviews are usually written by someone who was either never a customer of the business, or they were a customer but never tried the product or service.
Fake reviews can be made using a variety of methods, including creating a new online persona (such as a fictitious person), hiring someone to write a fake review, or finding a person who is willing to write a review in exchange for something (e.g., money, gifts, etc.).
Fake reviews are used to trick consumers into thinking that a product or service is good when in reality it’s not. Fake reviews are often used in e-commerce to trick consumers into buying products or services that are of poor quality.
Causes Of Fake Online Reviews
The rise in fake reviews can be attributed to a few different things. Some of these include:
Increasing Number Of Review Sites
Social media and review sites have grown significantly in the last few years. This has led to an increase in the number of sites that are used to leave reviews. This means there are more places for fake reviews to be posted.
Evolution Of Paid Review Sites
Paid review sites have become increasingly popular in the last few years. This has led to an increase in the number of sites where fake reviews can be posted.
Growing Awareness Of The Importance Of Reviews
Consumers are now more likely to look at product and service reviews than ever before. As such, businesses are more likely to step up their efforts to create fake reviews to boost their rankings.
4 Ways To Spot Fake Online Reviews
The following are some common signs that a review might be fake:
1. The Review Has A High Number Of Typos And Grammatical Errors
This may indicate that the reviewer either didn’t proofread their review or they don’t speak English as their first language. An authentic review will likely have fewer grammar and spelling errors than a fake review.
Studies have shown that fake reviews tend to have significantly more grammatical errors than authentic reviews. If the review has a large number of spelling and grammatical errors, it’s likely the review is fake. However, it is important to note that some real reviews still have a few small grammatical errors.
2. The Reviewer Only Has One Review And It’s For Your Business
If the person writing the review has only reviewed your business and no other businesses, the review is likely fake. The person reviewing your business is likely being compensated for the review.
Businesses that use fake reviews will often hire people to write reviews for their products and services. These people are likely to leave just one review and it will be for your business. Furthermore, if the review comes from someone living in another country, it’s likely fake.
Businesses that hire people to write fake reviews typically hire folks from other countries since it is harder to pinpoint who the reviewer is.
3. The Review Sounds Overly-Positive
Unfortunately, many fake reviews try to be overly positive. This means they don’t give any real information and they don’t provide any helpful details.
4. The Reviewer Doesn’t Provide Any Specifics
Authentic reviews will provide specific details about your business, such as your products and services, prices, and hours of operation. If a reviewer doesn’t provide specific details about the product or service they received, likely, they didn’t use the product or service they’re reviewing.
While it’s normal for some reviews to be vague, it’s unlikely that a real customer will not provide information such as the hours of operation or have a detailed review that doesn’t mention any specifics. A fake reviewer will likely only provide vague information and will avoid describing your business in detail.
3 Simple Steps To Prevent Fake Reviews
Although it’s not always possible to prevent fake reviews from happening to your business, it is possible to reduce the number of fake reviews that get posted online. To do this, you’ll want to take the following steps:
1. Create a Positive Review Culture
This is one of the best ways to prevent fake reviews. A positive review culture will make it less likely for customers to post fake reviews in the first place. Some of the ways to create a positive review culture are to reward customers for leaving positive or honest reviews.
You can interrupt customers from writing fake reviews by implementing a review moderation policy. This policy should outline the types of reviews you won’t publish on your page, as well as the reasons why. It should also include information about the action(s) you will take if someone breaks your review moderation policy.
2. Respond to Negative Reviews
You should always respond to negative reviews. This is one of the best ways to reduce the number of fake reviews that are posted online.
You should respond to negative reviews publicly. This will help reduce the number of fake reviews posted to your page because customers who are considering writing a fake review will see your public response and decide not to post one after all.
You should respond to negative reviews privately as well. This will help you reach the customers who are most upset and who are most likely to leave a fake review.
Don’t respond to negative reviews by deleting them or by trying to get them taken down. This will only encourage more people to post fake reviews.
3. Take Action Against Fraudulent Reviews
If you believe a review is fake, you should take action against it. This will discourage other people from posting fake reviews on your page in the first place. You have to take action against a fraudulent review if you want to find out the person’s real name. This will help you determine the best course of action.
You can use a search engine to find out the person’s real name. You can also use a reverse image search or a reverse image search to find out if the picture included in the review is a photo of the real person or a stock photo.
Once you know the person’s real name, you can take action against their fraudulent review. This can include filing a complaint by contacting the review site and asking them to remove the review, contacting the person who posted the review, and asking them to remove the review.
The number of fake reviews is on the rise. Fake reviews are not just bad for the businesses they pertain to; they also impact the business owners who are trying to build a reputation based on honest, genuine reviews. With this in mind, businesses need to take the necessary steps to prevent fake reviews from being posted online.
Although it’s difficult to prevent all fake reviews from being created, it’s possible. You can do this by creating a positive review culture, as well as responding to negative reviews in a timely and professional manner. Positive reviews will create a strong online presence, while negative reviews will help you to quickly identify and respond to fraudulent reviews.
When you’re trying to prevent fake reviews from happening to your business, try to be as thorough as possible. This way, your business won’t fall victim to any more fake reviews.
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