Understanding fake online reviews

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Did you know that up to 63% of reviews online are fake? Research by Which? reveals that fake online reviews outnumber genuine ones in the latest problem in the online market.

Testimonials are one of the biggest converters when it comes to making sales.

Whether you’re booking a holiday online, searching for a restaurant to dine at or buying the latest gadget, you’ll almost certainly look at what other buyers have said.

In fact, around 68% of us check them before we make a purchase so we can make an informed decision.

And while most of us are wary of marketing lingo – no one likes to be sold to – we believe and, most importantly, trust reviews from our peers.

Unfortunately, some businesses are using this to their advantage.

What are fake online reviews?

They’re reviews that don’t reflect somebody’s true opinion of a product or service.

They’re simply designed to convince other consumers to buy the product or push people away by writing negative comments about competitors.

Either way, they’re dangerous tactics.

Companies have caught on to the importance of peer reviews and some of them will pay people (who haven’t bought or even used the product) to write a review, or they’ll incentivize them with freebies or by reducing the price.

So consumers are tricked into believing products are actually good causing them to part with their money.

When you’re buying an item online what would you rather buy: the product with 10 5-star reviews or the one with 100 5-star reviews? Exactly, it’s a no a brainer.

There is a thriving industry for fake online reviews

Surprisingly, these fake buyers are being paid between $1-$10 to post just one false review.

And with such a large cash incentive, it’s no wonder that it’s a growing problem.

But it’s actually bigger than you might think. Research has shown that on Amazon, the product categories with the highest amount of fake reviews are electronics, clothing, beauty items such as anti-ageing creams, and supplements and vitamins.

Fake online reviews cost consumers by tricking them into buying products.

It estimates that up to 63% of beauty reviews and up to 61% of electronics reviews are false.

But, why should you care?

The unethical business practice hits consumers where it hurts, the wallet.

With fake reviews outnumbering real ones, online shoppers are finding they’re being misled into wasting their hard-earned cash on products that don’t cut it.

And it means that honest sellers lose despite acting ethically. Their audience flock to competitors whose fake reviews push up their sales – and their bank balance.

Website safety from Melbourne Investigations

The online safety specialists at Melbourne Investigations know all the tricks of the trade and they’re skilled at ensuring you and your family stay safe online.

Established in 2010, we have an outstanding record of sniffing out links across a range of data sources.

If you’re concerned about your or a loved one being scammed by fake reviews, we provide awareness education or set up safety software to prevent access to problem websites.

Contact us for a confidential chat about your needs.

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