A company that produces false customer reviews online can be subject to thousands of dollars in fines and other legal costs. Despite the risks, three out of four people have been exposed to fake reviews.
(Ifop study for August & Debouzy and Havas Paris, 2019).
In this article, we’ll help you spot fake customer reviews and give you 4 tips to avoid them.
To keep your online reputation legitimate, fake reviews must be tracked down and reported. Here is our checklist to uncover them:
The identity of the author: has the Internet user just created a profile? Did he submit a single review? These signs can reveal a false attack against a store or brand.
Content and length of the review: A false review will tend to be very short, without a constructed and dated explanation. If there are no comments, the negative review may be fake. There have even been documented fake reviews criticizing products or services that are not offered at the store.
Vocabulary and spelling: watch out for comments that are full of superlatives or spelling mistakes. Many bogus reviews are designed to damage your reputation, and using unfounded childish or exaggerated language can erode trust.
Proof of unfair competition: did you receive a comment whose final goal is to promote a competing establishment or merchant? This opinion can be the proof of unfair competition, without justified purchase and with the objective of diverting the attention of Internet users and attracting them.
You now know the criteria for judging the veracity of an online customer review. Instead of having to find fake reviews and take steps to negate them, why not try to avoid them altogether?
Follow these 4 Verified Reviews Tips to avoid fake reviews!
1) Favor the exchange to identify the veracity of an opinion
Have you chosen to collect and manage customer reviews, using a voluntary deposit solution? This means that anyone on the Internet can leave their opinion on your products or services. You won’t always have proof of purchase or customer experience.
If you have a questionable review, use good faith by being open to discussion. Online reviews create spaces for discussion between the customer and the company: take advantage of them to always respond intelligently.
You thus prove to all Internet users your involvement in solving the problems encountered. In case of a suspicious negative customer review, you can also ask questions of the alleged customer, to show that you are a good listener, even if there is a misunderstanding.
Before we get there, the best solution is to opt for a trusted third party who only collects post-purchase customer reviews.
2) Promote post-purchase solicitation
To avoid false comments that could harm your e-reputation, the right reflex is as follows: adopt a solution that only allows post-purchase solicitation.
To recognize the authenticity of a review, the author must be identified. By allowing the voluntary submission of opinions, it is difficult to tell right from wrong, since everyone can express themselves … On the basis of real experience, or not!
At Verified Reviews, our solution allows you to send post-purchase customer feedback requests. We receive information about an order or a customer purchase, to prove its authenticity. Then the post-purchase customer feedback request can be sent by e-mail. Our solution is a guarantee of authenticity, since the merchant has an obligation to survey all the customers who have purchased. No sorting possible to bias returns and no collection of false reviews is possible with this process, since all the people solicited are proven customers.
3) Choose a certified partner
To avoid the collection of false reviews, it is important to use a certified trusted third party. Since 2014, a standard has governed the collection, management and dissemination of customer opinions in complete transparency. This is the NF Z74-501 standard, now renamed as the NF ISO 20488 standard.
This voluntary standard can be subject to certification, which is also voluntary. Being NF Service certified is a real guarantee of quality for companies or online opinion collection solutions.
At Verified Reviews, our online opinion collection solution and services have been NF Service certified since March 28, 2014. We even participated in the drafting of the NF ISO 20488 standard, to establish a legal framework around this practice. poorly regulated a few years ago.
By deciding to follow the guidelines of AFNOR, we guarantee the reliability and the strictest authenticity concerning the opinions collected. Who says authenticity guaranteed, says absence of false advice!
4) Collect customer reviews continuously
On the Internet, your e-reputation must be your best ally… And surprise, online reviews contribute to it! To strengthen your brand image and minimize fake reviews or malicious comments, consider collecting customer reviews continuously.
The secret sauce isn’t complicated:
Solicitation of all customers + in real time + continuously = improvement of SEO performance, e-reputation and conversion over the long term … And above all, this practice helps you to protect yourself from false reviews or actions of unfair competition!
By promoting a continuous solicitation of opinions, you increase the number of opinions collected. On your site, your social networks or on your Verified Reviews page, you strengthen the confidence of your customers. According to a BrightLocal study, 85% of Internet users read up to 10 reviews before making a purchase and 44% believe a customer review must be less than a month old to be relevant.
The number of reviews issued and the fact that they are recent have a massive influence throughout the customer journey. In the event of a negative opinion, it will more easily go unnoticed thanks to a comprehensive and continuous collection.
A negative review is never pleasant to receive … Especially when it comes to a fake customer review. To preserve your online reputation, consider adopting a post-purchase collection solution. Thanks to a trusted third party like Verified Reviews, you say goodbye to false reviews, and hello to transparency, authenticity and enhanced branding!