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How to Identify Fake Reviews

Brown shopping bags

Before you shop online, be careful on the reviews you see.

Before buying online, it is natural for us to look for the feedback of other consumers about the product or service. The sad part of it is that: a lot of reviews online are fake. So, who does these deception? They could be businesses, retailers, marketers, whose main purpose is to increase their sales and damage their rival companies, writers who use phony names, and people who gets a deal from positive comments, or those who gets paid for their reviews.

Fake online reviews can surely hurt the netizens. People can waste good money in purchasing products that are not good. Products like that may endanger your health and safety.

To help you know whether a review online is fake or not, here are some tips:

  • Language – Real reviews present information on the performance of the product. The fake ones raves and uses superlatives rather than detailed product description.
  • Review the reviewer – A reviewer who writes a review for a certain company shows that the reviewer has a vested interest.  The reviewer can use photo of the product purchased to show authenticity. Investigate the site. Some allow posts from consumers who purchased in their site. Know their policies on this.
  • Be sharp on the detail – If a reviewer can tell why he or she like or dislike a certain product or service, that is not fake. If the review uses general statement like, “It was horrible!” or “It was so good,” it only means the review was written to  blatantly credit or discredit a certain product or service, to get a negative or positive feel to the reader.
  • Too negative or too positive – Do not believe reviews that gives a crushing 1-star or a fabulous 5-star.  A real review is in the middle of the spectrum.
  • Well-written reviews – Be cautious if the review is written well and everything is perfect. A marketing shill or a person who has vested interest could have written it. It also uses superlatives to describe the product.
  • Keyword stuffing – some online fake reviews will use the game search engine results to create traffic to the product purchase page or site. This is done by repeating the same product over and over again to make the product appear in the search results. This tactic is used to manipulate the ranking.
  • Reviewer’s history – Findout the history of the reviewer by checking the different online stores to know how many reviews the reviewer has written.
  • Same text over and over again – If a review is seen again and again, it could be bot generated. Also, reuse of the same content taken from another review is fake.
  • Check the reviewer’s ID – a long line of numbers on its username should you that profile could be fake. An example would be “Reviewer 072514123789”. A username like that could mean that that profile could be a bot.