Let’s make 2017 the year of honest reviews!
Reviews can be an important part of a local SEO strategy, but columnist Greg Gifford warns that overdoing it can make your business look shady.
It’s another month, so it’s time for another installment of Greg’s Soapbox. This time, we’re talking about reviews.
Is it just me, or does it seem like we’re seeing more and more fake reviews out there lately? Sure, reviews are an important piece of the Local SEO puzzle, but they’re nowhere near a silver bullet.
Why is it that so many companies are cheating when it comes to reviews? I’d at least understand if they had a problem with bad reviews that they were trying to bury, but it makes zero sense when it’s a company that gets great reviews anyway.
Even worse, it seems that the vast majority of fake reviews are happening on Google. After this fall’s Possum update, it’s more important than ever before to spread your reviews around to third-party review sites.
I was doing a mini-audit for a potential client last month (using the same template and system I shared in my Local SEO mini-audit post here on Search Engine Land a few years ago). When I got to the reviews section, I found appalling results — it was painfully obvious that they were faking reviews. I brought it up on the call, and it turned out that the owner had no idea that his team was faking reviews.
So for this month’s post, I thought it would be prudent to share six important tips to help everyone make their reviews (or their clients’ reviews) more honest in 2017. They’ll be better for potential customers, and they’ll avoid potential problems from filters or penalties.