With fraudulent reviews on the rise, Yelp is making a change. Since 2012, Yelp has placed more than 4,900 Compensated Activity Alerts and Suspicious Activity Alerts, but for consumers, it can be difficult — if not impossible — to tell which businesses are bad actors on the platform. Now, in an effort to combat the […]
Can the influence of reviews be quantified? This is one of the questions addressed by SOCi’s new State of Google Reviews report. The report examines the Google profiles of approximately 31,000 chain and franchise businesses, who together earned 4.9 million reviews from January 2015 to July 2022.
Consumer reviews matter now more than ever, but fake online reviews are at an all-time high. The issue has prompted FTC action as well as new guidelines for retailers that solicit online reviews. While most people can’t spot inauthentic reviews, 67% of consumers say they are concerned about review fraud.
Curtis Boyd is the founder of a Southern California-based company, The Transparency Co, which has gained significant attention in recent months for the technology Boyd has developed to detect fake reviews at scale. Boyd’s company has recently secured government contracts to help ferret out fake reviews online.
User feedback is a puzzle, and one piece that always seems to be missing from the brand side is engagement. User reviews and consistent customer experiences are the keys to a loyal user base. What’s more, reviews left without replies can be more devastating than no review at all or a negative one.
Nextdoor is the latest local platform to publish what it calls a Transparency Report, designed to offer information to the public about efforts made to maintain an online community that is free from problematic content. In Nextdoor’s case, the focus is on reducing incidents of hate speech and incivility in order to promote healthy community interaction.
Recent developments from the FTC mark a significant moment in the history of online review management. Practices such as review gating have been relatively widespread in the industry for years, despite warnings such as this Help Center update published by Google in 2018: “Don’t discourage or prohibit negative reviews or selectively solicit positive reviews from customers.”
Figuring out what type of Local Guides are leaving reviews, and what kind of reviews they are leaving, matters for a few reasons. First, Local Guides are responsible for writing more reviews of local businesses than any other group on the internet. Second, Local Guides write reviews under circumstances that make them different from ordinary consumers: They are self-selected volunteers who get rewarded, albeit in a non-monetary fashion, for their contributions. Fairly or not, they are often thought of as biased and their contributions as less valuable, merely “written for points.” Third, the true characteristics of Local Guides are not well known, because they have not yet been subject to this type of study.
Examining 3.7 million shopper reviews online, Reputation found that Google Business Profiles now have more impact on a location’s findability than any other factor. With 90% of consumers reading reviews before making a purchase, and review volume up 12% from 2020, retailers can’t afford to miss out on the opportunities that localized online marketing provides.
For Yelp, consumers’ stated preference for written reviews is good news to share, as the company forces reviewers to leave written text, whereas Big Tech rival Google, which has gained sway in the local reputation space in recent years, allows reviewers to leave a rating out of five stars without further commentary.
In an analysis of more than 4 million store reviews on Google, Facebook, Yelp, and TripAdvisor, Uberall and The Transparency Company found that Google has the highest average percentage of inauthentic reviews across business categories. More than one in 10 reviews on Google’s platform was identified as fraudulent or fake in Uberall’s analysis. The category with the highest percentage of fake reviews was locksmiths, while pharmacies came in as the category with the lowest percentage of fake reviews.
Social distancing is here for the long haul, but consumers are still craving social connection. Brands can fill in the gaps by maximizing their digital presence on the key search and social platforms, such as Facebook, Google My Business, and Yelp, where consumers are spending increased time online.
Providing an outstanding customer experience can be your most powerful and cost-efficient marketing strategy. In a business world where dozens of other companies sell the same products and services as you do, creating an environment where customers enjoy dealing with your company will help your brand stand out from the rest.