Why online reviews can’t be trusted

We all know about fake reviews but did you also know that a lot of big companies use review systems that are deliberately set up to be manipulative and obtain positive reviews?

A popular review site uses a system where they ask for reviews in what the call The Customers Happy Time so there is more chance they will leave a positive review.

Another reason why they ask for a review is that their tests show that when you ask for a review over 90% of the time it will be a positive review, where as if the customer looks for somewhere to leave a review over 90% of the time it will be negative.

They go on to say that approximately 15% of the people they ask to leave a review do so.

All very nice and very clever you may think – but let’s look a little closer.

Reviews obtained using review system – Using 1000 customers for this demonstration.

1000 customers are asked to leave a review at a time when they are perceived to be happy customers

Approximately 15% of these customers are expected to leave a review = 150 (I was always good at maths :) )

Of these 150 customers approximately 92% will leave a positive review = 138

The figures we end up with when using this review system

Positive reviews: 138
Negative reviews: 12

All very nice for the companies using the online reviews system and all very nice for the review system providers,

But when systems are used to tilt results can they really be trusted and are end users being deceived?

Google knows about these systems yet still display the gold review stars in their results pages.

Is Google as guilty as the review system providers when it comes to reviews manipulation?

Review Manipulation

4.8 out of 5
based on 101 reviews.