With about 5-10% of customers now writing reviews how can you tell if what you’re reading is a real review or a fake one? Well, one way that readers can be assured that a review is real is to look for a verified review badge which is often shown next to, or underneath, the review itself.
When a reader sees the verified review badge, they know that they can trust the review. Review platforms including Trustist use verified review badges, however, it’s vitally important to note that that there are still many, many genuine reviews out there that aren’t labelled with a verified review badge.
Open vs Closed Review Platforms
In that case, is it more about trusting the review platform than the reviews themselves? It’s not that simple, but this question does remind us to mention open versus closed review platforms.
A closed review platform is one that is only accessible to verified, genuine customers who the business invites to leave a review. However, a closed review platform doesn’t mean that your reviews are hidden. In fact, everyone can see the same volume of reviews whether your platform is open or closed, it just means that only people who have recently purchased, for example, and have been invited by the business are able to leave reviews. Trustist is a closed platform, and this gives our clients full control over who can leave a review. Our clients simply issue personalised links via emails or text messages and invite their customers to leave some feedback.
Open review platforms, on the other hand, allow absolutely anyone to leave a review without verification. This includes platforms such as Trustpilot, Google My Business, Amazon, Facebook etc. You can always check to see if a review platform is open by clicking on their site, finding the company you want to review and seeing is you can leave a review. If it’s that easy, then it’s an open review platform. The main issue with open review platforms is that there is an increased chance of false reviews, and whilst clients can flag a false/fake review, they have to follow a process and that process takes time.
What’s important to remember is that, in our experience, most reviews are genuine. Yes, there are false/fake reviews out there, but they are in the minority and the benefits of implementing a well thought through review strategy and running it on a robust review platform far outweigh any negatives.
How can You Identify a Real Review?
- Check whether the review platform is an open or closed review platform (closed review platforms being invitation only to verified, genuine customers)
- Check to see if the review has a verified review badge next to or underneath the review
- Read the review thoroughly. What is your gut instinct telling you?
- Is it a short review or a longer one? Studies suggest that fake/false reviews are often shorter than real reviews
- Is it easy to read? Does it flow? If it does then that’s a good sign its real
- Has it been responded to by the business it’s reviewing and if it has, what did they say? This is a very good way to see if a review is real or not