Google Reviews: To Buy or Not To Buy

Author: Victoria Csiga

It’s important to garner as many google reviews as possible for your company if you want to establish a solid reputation among consumers. Countless studies have shown the impact a Google review can have on purchase decisions for the consumer. 

However, buying Google reviews can come at a cost – and not just a financial one. 

The temptation to cave in and pay for Google reviews for your business is much greater when you don’t do so well or have many one-star ratings. This is why so many companies these days assist with buying Google reviews, which means they will hire people to post glowing reviews anonymously.

Why you Shouldn’t Buy Google Reviews

There are many reasons why you place a lot of importance on getting Google reviews for your company, but buying them isn’t the way to go.

The risks associated with doing so are significant, and unless you are comfortable operating under false pretenses, they aren’t worth it. While it may seem like a shortcut to success, the chances are it will end up doing you more harm than good when all is said and done.

Google’s Guidelines

If you care at all about adhering to the Google Guidelines – which you should – then you’ll know it’s best not to try and cheat the system. If you’re not clear on the guidelines, you should read up on them now.

If you are caught trying to post fake content or using multiple accounts to trick consumers into believing false reviews, then the consequences will be severe.

While sites like Yelp will simply make the consumer aware of fake reviews, Google goes a step further and removes the listing from its website. 

Trouble with the FTC

The FTC, which is short for Federal Trade Commission, created an Act that was made to crack down on anyone caught buying Google reviews. That means if you are caught in the act, you’ll not only have your listing removed by Google, but you could also face further disciplinary action from the FTC.

Just to give you an idea of how severe this punishment can be, the FTC once issued an enormous $12.8 million fine for a company guilty of using fake online reviews to boost its reputation in the eyes of its consumers.

While we don’t know your company’s financial health, however good the books look, a hefty fine could put a large dent in its finances.

Dubious Effectiveness

While Google reviews are trusted by many consumers, buying fake ones isn’t guaranteed to pay off. In fact, one of the biggest issues with buying fake reviews is that they are so obviously fake that they can easily be seen through by consumers.

All it takes is a few suspicious-looking reviews for your company to be flagged, and if you have a large customer base, the chances of them being noticed are high.

Plus, you could argue that any positive effect you get from having more reviews for your company is nullified by the lack of real feedback you get from consumers.

With little constructive criticism, how can you expect to improve your product or services?

Get Google Reviews the Right Way

There’s no denying the power of Google reviews to change a business’s fortunes and increase sales dramatically.

But instead of stooping as low as to buy fake reviews, you should earn them the right way.

There are several ways to earn Google reviews authentically, and this will yield real feedback from consumers that you can use to improve your business.

Email Your Way to New Reviews

One of the most reliable ways to get new reviews is to request them through email marketing.

If you know when the best time to contact consumers is, then you have a good chance of converting their interest in your product into a positive review. Generally speaking, Saturday is the best day to email the consumer, and the hours of 2-3 pm and 6-7 pm are most fruitful.

In the email, you must keep the message concise. You are writing to convert, so you want to get to the point as quickly as possible while you still have the customer’s attention. To do so, you can incorporate a link to your Google review site and sprinkle in a few CTAs (Call To Action) along the way.

Or you could direct the customer straight to your Google My Business page, where they can leave a review.

Use Google My Business

Google My Business (GMB) is an excellent tool for acquiring new reviews, and you can make the most of the Marketing Kit to appeal to the consumer.

The Kit has everything you need to convert a consumer’s interest in your product or service into a review, such as stickers, social posts, and posters.

For an in-depth look at the best practices to use for gaining more Google reviews, check out our guide here!>>

Final Thoughts

While, yes, buying Google reviews seems like a great shortcut to financial success for your business, it can have severe consequences.

That’s why you should rely on your ability to deliver such an outstanding service to the consumer that they have no choice other than to leave a glowing five-star review.

Take the time to read through the reviews customers leave for your business, and respond to them. Learn from the negative ones, and you can even turn them into a positive for your business. 

When you’re ready to collect and manage your reviews  like a pro, sign up for Trustindex today!>>

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Category: News