How to remove fake Google Reviews? 4 Steps to remove easy 2024

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How to remove fake Google Reviews? Fake reviews ruining your Google ratings? Here’s how to spot them and get them removed so they don’t mess with your online reputation and scare potential customers from buying from you.

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How to remove fake Google Reviews

How to remove fake Google Reviews?

Reporting a fake review through Google Business Profile Help.

You can also report a review using the Google Business Profile Help page. Click Engage with customers > Reviews > Remove reviews from your business profile on Google. Then click the “Request review removal” button.

How to remove fake Google Reviews

And select the review you want to report to Google.

How to remove fake Google Reviews

You’ll also have to select a reason for reporting the review to Google.

And again, after you’ve submitted it, you’ll have to wait for Google to remove your review. Here, you’ll also be able to check the status of the reports you submitted before to see how they’re doing.

Why is reporting fake Google reviews important?

Customer reviews are a valuable lead acquisition tool. They’re created by your customers and they inform potential leads how well your product or service performs compared to your marketing messaging. Leads who are interested in your brand can trust this feedback as an unbiased guide for whether to do business with your company.

Here’s the problem.

Not all customer reviews are written by customers. Some people write fake reviews as a way to promote or slander a brand. Some companies will even post fake reviews about their competitors as a way to get a leg up in their industry.

And, it’s not as uncommon as you may think.

According to BrightLocal, 62% of consumers think they have read a fake customer review in the last year. This can be a real problem for brands that rely on third-party review sites, like Google Maps, to attract new customers. On Google, anyone can write a fake review that goes public instantly upon submission.

And since Google is a third-party site, businesses can’t just take the review down. They need to go through Google’s reviewal process to appeal the fake review

How to remove fake Google Reviews

Where do fake Google reviews come from?

You might know it from experience. You run your small business (or any business) – maybe it’s a coffee shop, a local pizza place, or maybe a country-wide (or even international) restaurant chain. You strive for the best customer service, providing excellent customer experiences.

Though, it’s inevitable that every once in a while, a customer will be unhappy with their experience and voice it in a Google review.

And that’s pretty normal. And if you own it and communicate with the customer, you can usually turn that around and sometimes even gain a loyal customer.

But fake reviews on Google are something else.

Because, well, they’re fake. There’s no bad experience to rectify, and really, no customer communication to be had.

And, I mean, why would anyone write a fake review?

Well, it can usually be a few things:

  • The competition working its unethical ways to undermine your brand.
  • Fans of another brand wanting to basically do the same thing, though they’ve never even used your products or services.
  • Trolls trolling.
  • Some brands will also get fake positive reviews to get a higher rating and appear much more trustworthy (though whether that’s an effective tactic is another matter.)

And, unfortunately, it happens all the time. According to BrightLocal, 50% of consumers have seen fake reviews on Google. And, since it’s based on just consumers’ perception and suspicion, that number is just an estimate.

And it’s pretty similar for other sites like Amazon (also 50%) or Facebook (42%).

How to remove fake Google Reviews

How to spot fake reviews on Google

One reason why it’s a ballpark number is that you can’t always tell for sure if a review is fake. But there are some telling signs. Fake reviews on Google are often reviews that:

  1. Have just the star rating without an actual written review (though these can be real ones, too.)
  2. They’re overly positive or overly negative.
  3. There are more similar reviews with maybe slight changes in wording.
  4. They read fake. They might use general statements, be impersonal, and just read like an ad (if they’re the positive kind). Or, you know, like AI wrote them, but in a bad way.
  5. They’re written by anonymous users (or users with weird-sounding handles and no profile picture.)

To confirm your suspicions, you can do a few other checks, like:

  • See if the review author has reviewed other local businesses on Google and how frequently they do it. (You can do it by going to their Google profile.)
  • Take a closer look at their avatar.
  • Paste the review into Google to see if you can find the same ones anywhere else online – that would be a pretty clear sign you’re dealing with a fake review.

How to Report Fake Google Reviews?

Now, let’s say it happened to you – you got a fake review or, even worse, have been getting more of them lately. You’ll obviously want to know how to remove fake Google reviews.

Which is all the more critical since (according to the same study by BrightLocal) Google is the most used and trusted platform for reviews. So, naturally, people will want to read them before they come to visit you or buy from you. And you don’t want fake reviews to ruin your reputation.

Unfortunately, there’s no easy way to just remove fake Google reviews – you need to go through a process with Google so they can verify whether a review is indeed fake and should be removed.

So, once you’ve identified a fake Google review, here’s what you can do.

  • Log into your Google My Business account.

How to remove fake Google Reviews

  • Go to your profile’s Google reviews.
  • Click on the three dots next to a review and select “Report review”
  • Then select the reason for reporting the review in question and submit.

How to remove fake Google Reviews

  • Then it’s all in the hands of Google, and all you can do is wait until the review gets (possibly) removed.
  • While it’s being verified by Google and still visible, you can also respond to the review so it’s clear to people who see it that you suspect (or know) it’s fake.

How to manage your legitimate reviews (positive or negative)

Removing fake Google reviews is just a part of taking care of your online reputation. But managing your Google Business profile is so much more than that.

So, besides establishing which reviews are fake and getting them removed, here are a few best practices you can follow to help your Google profile promote your business more effectively and reliably:

  • Respond to customer reviews. This might be hard when you have many locations and get many reviews all the time. But it’s totally worth it. People not only read other people’s reviews, but they also pay attention to how (and if) you respond.
  • Make Google reviews an integral part of your customer service workflows. If that’s the place people want to contact you, be ready for it. Plus, you’ll have ways to react quickly and won’t miss a bad review that’s been there for months, discouraging others from visiting you.
  • Keep an active Google Business profile. Yes, in case you didn’t know, you can post updates and discounts on your Google profile, encouraging potential customers to take up your most recent offers. Which is a really effective way to market them, considering people viewing your business on Google Maps are usually pretty intent on finding a service or product you provide in their area.

Receiving fake Google reviews is scary and unpleasant, but Google thankfully offers recourse if you ever receive one. While you wait for Google to remove the fake review, do everything you can to make your positive reviews shine. Thank your (real) customers for their (real) business, and encourage your current customers to give you a good word on Google.

Once they do, don’t forget to respond and show off your excellent customer service skills.

Hope you don’t have many opportunities to report fake reviews. Though, let’s face it, they’re bound to happen, and there’s probably not much you can do about it. But when they do happen, you’ll now know what to do to prevent them from ruining your online reputation.

 

“Capitalize on the strength of positive reviews to advance your business today! Purchase genuine Google Reviews from our esteemed platform at AudienceGain and observe your reputation flourish.”


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