Why People Write Fake Reviews on Google and What Can You Do About It?

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Why People Write Fake Reviews on Google and What Can You Do About It?

Probably one of the main reasons someone chooses to write a fake Google review about your business is you haven’t let them do something they would like to do. There’s no way round your refusal so their only revenge is to write a fake review about you or your business. I’m not talking about negative reviews, just fake reviews where what the person is stating, is completely fabricated.
What motivates a person to do such a thing? Often, it’s an attempt to damage your small or medium-sized business when you know your policies are fair but the person writing the fake review, just doesn’t understand why you have policies set-up in the way that you do.

Sometimes, a person bothering to write a fake review can simply be put down to pure jealously. You’ve achieved something that they wanted to achieve but couldn’t. Sadly, jealous people are often vindictive too.

Some people write fake reviews to damage a competitor’s business. They may post negative reviews purely to make the competitor look bad and discourage people from doing business with them. Even though said business has had nothing to do with the reviewer.

As we know, trolls like to get attention and write fake reviews for the fun of it. They may make up outlandish stories or exaggerate the truth. They often personalise their review, slating the business owner, staff or experience. All an expression of their imagination and designed to inflict maximum damage to your business. It is, without doubt unfair as however hard you work, however hard you to try to please everyone, there’s always going to be that someone. I used to say to my father about any manner of things, as a youngster, ‘But that’s not fair’! His response was always, ‘Who said life would be fair’? Not an answer but a reflection of understanding.

What Can You Do About It?

One great way to negate a bad review is to ask your satisfied customers to hop onto your Google review page and post a positive review for your business. If enough customers do that, the negative review will end up way down your review list.

You can also report the fake review to Google (although it still doesn’t always get removed).  But. Google do have a team of people who review reports of fake reviews and can take action to remove them.

If you’d like to report a fake review, go to your ‘Google My Business’ business page and click the ‘Reviews’ tab. Then click the ellipsis (3 dots) next to the review you wish to report. Select ‘Report a problem’ then select the type of problem you’re reporting.

It’s also worth responding to the fake review.  Even if you can’t get the fake review removed, you can still respond to them to let potential customers know that you’re aware of the issue. In your response, you can explain why you believe the review is fake and offer to provide more information to anyone who is interested.

You are also at liberty to take legal action if you believe the fake review is defamatory. However, this can be an emotionally draining, costly and time-consuming process. This is probably a last resort, but you may feel it is worth it to protect the reputation of your business.

Laurel Alper is the founder of Laurel Leaf Networking.

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