How To Deal With Fake Negative Reviews On Google?

Mary Edward
Written By Mary Edward

22 min read

  • 0 Comments
  • Publish Date : 4/3/2024 5:12:21 AM
  • Last Update : 4/24/2024 5:25:39 PM
blog
Table Of Contents

Receiving Fake negative Google reviews can cause disturbance, especially for small business owners. One bad review can affect the whole system of the organization and have the power to damage the well-built rapport and existence of the business. Therefore, a business needs to look for fake and negative Google reviews and ensure to remove them from their Google My Business page. 

It is not recommended just to avoid these fake reviews and move on with a few positive ones. These reviews are given by someone who hasn’t even visited the store or has shopped from your business but still has the power to damage your reputation. These reviews can work in the favor of your competitors. 

Here is a detailed way how to deal with fake negative reviews on Google and remove them from your business’s page. 

What Does A Fake Google Review Mean?

Reviews on Google, typically published by people who have never interacted with your company or ever made a purchase yet put in the bad words, are fake. These reviews could be uploaded by your competitors trying to harm your company’s image. For whatever reason, fake Google reviews do not accurately represent a company's genuine character.

Hence, it is important to regularly visit and update your Google profile and look for highly suspicious reviews that can ruin the reputation of your business. Here are some ways that can help you spot a fake Google review. 

How Would You Know To Spot A Fake Google Review?

These are some excellent practices that you may use to confirm the legitimacy of the Google reviews that you get.

#1. Be attentive to the detailing of the review - 

Fake reviews are mostly written by people who have never purchased or used your business's service. Pay attention to the details of the review, if the reviewer is talking about personal experiences, circling back and forth, and not clearly stating the complaint or what went wrong, it probably indicates a fake one.

#2. Check the frequency of the reviews by the reviewer -

One way to spot a Google review is to check the frequency of the review uploaded by the reviewer. If they are paid to write a false or fake review, they will surely upload it in bulk to avoid suspicion. 

Here, businesses can check if all the bulk reviews were put up on the same day with the same reviewer it is most likely to be fake. 

#3. Find out complex words -

When the reviewers are trying to put up a fictional story as a fake review they end up writing in the most simple and common way. A study reveals that reviewers tend to choose shorter, less complex words when they attempt to be dishonest. It is one of the prominent ways to spot a fake negative review on Google. 

#4. Watch if a reviewer is reviewing for other businesses -

Examining the reviewer’s other reviews for competitors particularly those in your sector, is another technique to verify its authenticity. Go to the review and select the reviewer's name to verify. It should bring up a side panel with all the reviews the user has posted.

#5. Do you see any repeated exclamation points?

If you find a bunch of exclamation points in one review, then that review is surely doubtful to be fake. According to an MIT study, exclamation marks are frequently used more in fraudulent reviews than in honest ones. Fake reviews will focus on negative feelings and thoughts by using exclamation points rather than pinpointing their exact feedback.  

#6. Keep an eye on the reviewer's name and profile icon -

The name and profile icon linked to the review can be a crystal giveaway. People who write fraudulent reviews frequently create fake accounts since Google Reviews requires an email address. 

Verify the reviewer's picture and name. Although the legitimacy of the review may not always be shown, you may be able to identify a dishonest competitor or someone who never used your services but felt obligated to leave a review.

Why Is It Significant To Spot A Fake Google Review?

Identifying fake negative reviews on Google is crucial since they can seriously harm your business's sales and reputation online by misleading prospective clients and portraying an inaccurate image of your business in people's eyes.

Understanding which reviews are fraudulent can enable you to report and delete the reviews to lessen the damage that has been done. Therefore, the elimination and reporting of fake negative Google reviews is essential.

A Step-By-Step Guide To Remove Fake Google Review

So many questions arise with fake reviews, like how can you respond to fake Google reviews? Is it possible to delete those negative reviews? 

The answer is simple: you can only report these reviews, and Google will figure out that the review in question is fraudulent, and, before you know it will be removed. 

Meanwhile, take the following steps to request, report, and remove the fake Google review:

Step 1: Examine if the review is fake 

Individuals can never directly remove a fake negative review from their profile. But before reporting it to Google, it is important to examine if the review is fake by following above mentioned strategies. Google will evaluate the complaint, approve your request, and delete the review. Let’s understand how to request Google in the next step. 

Step 2: Sign in to ‘Google My Business’

Sign in to your Google My Business account to see all the reviews people have left for your company. From there, you can start the process of removing reviews.

Step 3: Scroll to the reviews tab 

You must choose the review tab from the menu that appears once you log in. You will be given a few alternatives. You may access all the reviews customers have left for your company by clicking on the same.

Step 4: Tap on the review you wish to 'flag' 

Choose the review that you believe is fraudulent by scrolling through the list of reviews. For every review, there will be three dots on the right side.

Step 5: Select the 'Flag as inappropriate' option 

When you click on those dots, a choice to "flag as inappropriate" will appear. When you click on it, your chosen review will be marked.

Step 6: Fill up the details in the survey 

The next step is to provide Google with an explanation for your flagging the review. You'll be given a list of alternatives in the survey. Select the one that best fits your request to have the review removed.

After picking whatever reason is most appropriate to flag the review, take a seat back and unwind. Google will contact you via email if they require any justification for flagging the reviews.

Step 7: Make sure to respond to the review 

Remember to reply to any review you get, whether fake or authentic, good or bad. Accept to the client that your company is sorry for any trouble you may have created, and inquire how the matter can be handled. You probably won't hear back if the review is fraudulent.

Now that you understand the process of reviews removal requests through GMB. Knowing another method to report negative and fake Google reviews in our next segment will be better.

How To Report A Fake Review On Google?

Follow the steps below to report a fake review on Google: 

Step 1: Navigate Google reviews workflow place 

If you don’t have a Google My Business page account then you can directly navigate to Google’s workflow place. But that requires the basic sign-in through your email ID. 

Step 2: Choose your business from the given list 

As soon as you log into your account, all listed businesses will be featured. After selecting, click continue to report a review for the chosen business. 

Step 3: Track the reports previously submitted  

You can either check the progress of a review you've already reported or submit a new report on the screen that follows.

You should start by reviewing the reports you've already turned in. In response to your reported review, Google may already be taking action.

Look at the status of a review you previously reported, and click Proceed.

When you go there, a screen with your reported reviews and Google's decision status will appear. Reviews that have previously been deleted will not appear in this list.

Step 4: Tap on 'report a new review for removal' 

If you haven't flagged a fake or negative review yet, you can start making fresh requests. To report a ‘new review for removal’ click on it.

Step 5: Choose the review you would like to report 

It will list all your reviews. Click the Report button in the right-hand column after selecting the item you wish to report.

Step 6: Choose the correct reason for reporting 

A pop-up window will be. You can pick the right reason for reporting the review to Google here.

Once you know it's the correct explanation, click Submit on the next screen.

Step 7: Submit! Go back to the workflow placed and hit continue 

After completing the process, you will receive a confirmation email and a notice on the current tab.

You can then click ‘Continue’ to return to the open workflow tab. You'll receive an additional confirmation there that your report has been submitted.

How To Respond To Fake Reviews On Google?

Google takes time to evaluate fake reviews, so be proactive. First, you should determine whether the reviewer is one of your clients. If not, you can respond with the statement, "The review is fake," since you do not have any records of working with this client. 

However, it would help if you considered below pointers before responding to fake reviews on Google:

1. Respond politely

Receiving a fake review can be frustrating, but always try to maintain your politeness on the Google platform while responding to the review, as the review is public and your target audience is reading.

2. Prompt response is appreciated

Respond promptly so that other consumers know this is a review they should also ignore before it further damages the reputation of the business. 

3. Drive attention to false accusations with facts and figures

When dealing with fake reviews, it's essential to gently call attention to the baseless charges stated in the review using exact facts and information. 

3 Tips To Deal With Fake Reviews On Google

Here are 3 tips to deal with fake reviews on Google: 

1. Flag the review as inappropriate 

If the fake review goes against Google review guidelines, you can report it and ask Google to take it down. Before reporting a review, make sure you have read the policies. 

After that, you can flag the review by following Google's instructions. Ask a few users to flag the review if you can. The volume of reports may contribute to raising awareness and accelerating action.

2. Get in touch with Google's support staff 

Twitter and the Google My Business (GMB) interface are the two ways to contact the Google support staff.

Bring the matter up on Twitter:

  • Sign into your company's Twitter account.
  • Tweet the Google Small Biz group.
  • Await for their response, then clarify the circumstances.

The Google My Business interface allows you to contact a Google agent.

  • Go into your GMB account first.
  • From the left-hand menu, select Support at the bottom.
  • Select Need more help? Under Contact Us.
  • Select customer reviews and images, then proceed to the Manage customer review stage.
  • Decide on your preferred method of contact.

3. Put forward a legal request to Google 

If that still doesn't work, you can make a complaint with Google by completing a form for a legal removal request. You can use this form to submit a complaint to Google regarding removing fake reviews from the search engine.

Read: Bеnеfits Of Negative Google Reviews

Bottom Line

Although nearly all businesses have to deal with fake Google reviews, you may protect your ratings by using the appropriate tools and taking preventative measures. Always remember only to report reviews that you believe to be fraudulent. Just don't flag a review at random that focuses on the shortcomings of your service.

Bad reviews might be a tremendous asset to you. You may provide exceptional customer service and alter those people's perceptions by improving those areas. 

In any scenario, remember to reply to Google reviews, no matter how negative they may be. Reacting to reviews will improve your digital visibility and present your brand favorably. Thus, the next time you receive a negative review, evaluate it and flag it immediately.

FAQs

#1. What are the challenges with negative or fake reviews on Google? 

The problem is that since Google allows users to use anonymous usernames, they have no way of knowing who your customers are and, therefore, won't accept the excuse that "this wasn't a customer" for removing a review. Most of the time, it's challenging to verify someone's identification online.

#2. Can you remove the review on Google on your own?

"Yes”; however, there are a few significant limitations to be aware of before you get too excited.

If a negative star rating is obtained due to inappropriate, incorrect, or fraudulent content, it can surely be removed by Google.

#3.  What if the Google team doesn't remove the fake review?

Regrettably, negative reviews aren't always taken down, especially if it's difficult to tell if they are real or fake. Using the Google My Business support contact form is the only way to attempt to escalate the issue. In addition, you should politely and professionally reply to the respective review.

#4. Is it possible to purchase fake Google reviews?

According to Google’s review guidelines, it is illegal to purchase fake Google reviews. However, doing so can damage the business's reputation online.

#5. What steps will Google take if I purchase fake Google reviews?

Google claims that inaccurate information may impact the accuracy of the data on Google Maps. Because of this, we forbid users from making false claims or misleading others by using Google Maps. It comprises:

  • Fabricated or deceptive claims on the nature or caliber of a good or service.
  • Falsifying or deleting information to con other users.
  • Falsifying or excluding facts that can unnecessarily influence how users make decisions.
  • Content with a conflict of interest foundation.
  • Publishing content that entices readers to click links that lead to dangerous or unwanted downloads exposes them to phishing, baiting, or both.

#6. Can the business page owner delete negative or fake reviews?

No, the business page owner can not delete negative or fake reviews. You can ask Google to remove it, but read the Google Reviews policy before requesting that a review be removed or deleted.

#7. How do I remove 1 star rated Google review?

After selecting "Manage reviews," select "Flag as inappropriate." After reviewing the report, Google might remove it if its content policies are broken. Although you cannot remove reviews directly, you can report fake or improper reviews so that they may be removed.

#8. How can I protect myself from a fake review on Google? 

You can protect yourself from a fake review on Google by following the steps.

In the Reviews Management Tool, mark a review.

  • Visit the tool for managing reviews
  • Verify that your email address to administer your business profile matches the one displayed
  • Press Confirm
  • Pick your business
  • Click Report for each review you wish to flag
  • Choose a review category from the new tab
  • Press the Submit button
Mary Edward
Written By Mary Edward

Mary has been a content and copy specialist with 15 years of extensive experience in the writing background. She has worked as a merchandising specialist for startups and small businesses and holds efficiency in writing sellable copies to elevate sales. While Mary's writing skills are commendable, she is also our strategic partner with Buyreviewz.com. She writes Google reviews, understands the roles and responsibilities of the targeted business, and studies their local needs, bringing traffic and driving users' attention toward the brand's website and social media platforms.

Your Comment
;