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Why Fake Reviews Never Work and How to Get Real Ones

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Reviews can increase your sales and attract new customers. But gathering feedback from real customers is time-consuming and tedious, so some business owners prefer to buy fake reviews. In this article, we explain why buying fake reviews is a bad strategy and how you can get comments from real customers.
  1. Why Reviews Are Important For Your Business
  2. Why Fake Reviews Never Work
  3. How to Spot Fake Reviews
  4. How to Get Authentic Reviews
  5. In a Nutshell

Why Reviews Are Important For Your Business

We never tire of repeating that online customer reviews are critical to your business. Here are some reasons why.
Read more about how to respond to negative feedback in this article How to Respond to Negative Reviews About the Company
  1. Reviews provide immediate feedback and help improve customer service. If something went wrong, your customers will let you know by leaving a review.
  2. Feedback is the voice of your customers. When you pay attention to comments, customers feel heard and valued. This goes a long way in building an online reputation and audience engagement.
  3. Reviews increase your visibility and make your business trustworthy. Companies with lots of online reviews let customers know they have been around for a while and are credible.
  4. Comments can boost your sales. Harvard Business School researchers say the more positively your business is rated, the higher your revenue. Other studies say the increase in revenue from positive reviews can be as high as 18%.
  5. Reviews make people talk about you. Both very good and very bad reviews spread quickly. If a customer is happy and satisfied with their experience, they are more likely to share it on multiple referral platforms. This increases your online presence and helps you rank higher in search engine results.

Why Fake Reviews Never Work

Feedback is a versatile tool that works not only for a company but also for its customers. By reading other people's impressions, users see how the company is doing. Of course, customers are also interested in how the company responds to negative and positive reviews in the public space.
In general, we can distinguish four categories of customers:
  • They read the reviews and the responses to them. They leave their impressions about the particular company.
  • They don't write themselves but read reviews and responses to them.
  • They read only negative reviews and think that positive reviews are bought.
  • They look at the rating of the company on different websites and don't read reviews.
To attract customers, some companies buy reviews. The matter is quite simple: demand creates supply. But such a system has many pitfalls. For example, customer reviews do not stick in the memory, and dishonest companies are downgraded.
In addition, customers' expectations may not be met when they see the reality after overly enthusiastic reviews. For every fake positive review, customers are likely to leave a few negative ones. In this case, the most you can expect is to attract the fourth type of customers. Besides, people recognize fake reviews at first sight.

How to Spot Fake Reviews

Some tips on how to spot a fake review:
  • A «customer» writes reviews about just about anything. It is impossible to determine their location as they may rate businesses in different cities and states. Their reviews are impersonal and full of generic phrases, clichés, and platitudes. If they like something, they never mention any details.
  • The mechanic gave me good advice on maintaining my car. I was pleasantly surprised by the prices considering the services provided. The shop has reasonable prices and good quality services.
  • A too neutral review. Genuine reviews are usually full of gratitude or anger. Fake ones try to make it look perfect in terms of grammar and emoticons.
  • It is a comfortable salon with a professional staff. The hairdresser cut my hair and recommended the perfect care for my hair type. The personal touch is impressive, as are the affordable prices.
  • Selling reviews. A genuine review usually aims to praise, scold or share experiences. Fake sales reviews just want to make you buy something.
  • It is a perfect place for a relaxing and enjoyable stay in a warm, friendly atmosphere! Great location, cozy rooms, friendly staff, and very tasty burgers. Do not hesitate and come!

How to Get Authentic Reviews

Fake reviews don't work and don't stick in the memory. So the goal is to convince real customers to leave genuine and preferably positive reviews. How do you do that?
Customers will willingly write good reviews only if the result has significantly exceeded their expectations. However, there are several ways to motivate them.
1. Promotions. Place a request to leave a review at the front desk at checkout. It should include a QR code with a link to a referral platform of your choice. As a reward, you can offer:
  • a small discount (2 to 5 percent is sufficient)
  • service outside the queue (if customers come by appointment, this is your option)
  • tea, coffee, or sweets (cheap and easy)
You can also post this call on social networks and ask customers to leave a review with a hashtag of the company. In return, you can offer the bonuses we wrote about above.
2. Request to «please do it now.» This works best with regular customers who trust you. Ask them to write a review right after they've been served. Their opinion is important and valuable to improve the quality of service.
3. An after-the-fact request for a review. A few hours or days after the visit, send your customers a text message or email with a link to a resource where they can give their feedback. Chances are their responses will be the most honest. This method is suitable for all customers.
Remember that no feedback, even negative, should be disregarded. A quick response to all comments shows that the company has its finger on the pulse and is interested in what customers think.

In a Nutshell

  • Do not buy fake reviews. They will only ruin your reputation.
  • Motivate your customers to leave honest reviews. The more of them, the better.
  • Communicate more and show more humanity. This way you will not only gain regular customers but maybe even some friends of the company.
  • Respond promptly to all reviews, even negative ones.
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2022-11-11T08:58:49+03:00
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