The biggest compliment a business can get is a referral from a happy client. Online reviews are the digital version of word-of-mouth, and savvy marketers understand the power of peer to peer reviews. In fact, five stars reviews are so influential to sales, that a whole unregulated industry has evolved to create fake reviews online. In response to the cheats in the industry, companies like Trustpilot build their business model on transparency and verifying all online reviews.
According to a report from the World Economic Forum, about $152 billion dollars is spent globally on subpar products with excellent reviews. The estimate is that on average, about 4% of reviews are fake.
Deceitful reviews exist thanks to the digital marketing industry. (There. We said it– and as experts in our industry, we’re very sorry.) So it’s no surprise that many SEO, social media and Google search marketers would employ the same practice to get high rankings for their companies. So buyer beware.
Here are some things to look for:
If you’re a business owner, it may be tempting to take the dodgy route and pay for fake reviews. However, we’ve witness this backfire on companies big time. And once trust is lost, it’s gone for good. So avoid shady practices, which includes paying for bogus followers on social media. Instead, grow your company organically, one happy customer at a time.