Lately, many businesses have been complaining about review problems with Google Business Profiles. Customers are leaving reviews and they’re not showing up – even though the customer can see the review. Also, businesses have been losing reviews at an alarming pace. In this week’s episode, I explain why these two problems are happening and what you should do if you’re struggling with missing reviews.
Welcome back to another episode of Local Search Tuesdays. This week, we’re talking about a big issue that businesses are facing lately – lots of reviews aren’t showing up.
There’s been a lot of buzz lately from businesses that are frustrated that Google reviews aren’t showing up, even though they know that customers are leaving reviews. Some businesses are even reporting that reviews that previously showed on their GBP have disappeared.
There are two reasons why reviews won’t show up. First, Google removed them manually because they violate the guidelines or the restricted content policy. This doesn’t actually happen that much in the real world. The much more common reason is that the algorithmic filter catches the reviews and removes them.
Most of us have known for a while that Google has a problem with fake reviews. Google is likely trying to tighten the review filter to combat the fake reviews, but with so many complaints popping up, it looks like the filter is too aggressive.
Joy Hawkins wrote up a great post on the Sterling Sky blog about this problem, you can check it out over at https://bit.ly/2022-missing-reviews. She shares the three most common reasons your reviews won’t stick:
Number one: you have an education or school category on your Google Business Profile. Google stopped accepting reviews for certain education categories back in 2019. If someone leaves you a review, they don’t get an error message, but that review won’t show up on your GBP.
Number two: The person who left you a review wasn’t anywhere near you when they left the review or they haven’t traveled to your area recently.
And number one: You offer free wifi to customers, and customers leave reviews while using that wifi network. Google sees the IP address when a user leaves a review, and if most of your reviews come from your own network, Google will filter the reviews.
If you’re having a problem with reviews that aren’t showing up when you know customers have left them, your best course of action is to head over to the GBP forum and create a post. Make sure you share the number of missing reviews, the date the reviews were left, the names of the people who left the reviews, and screenshots of the reviews.
One of the GBP Product Experts can escalate your post to the GBP team, and sometimes the team is able to restore the reviews.
That’s all the time we’ve got for today, so you know what that means.
Put your hand on the screen right here:
We totally just high-fived ‘cause you learned something awesome. Thanks for watching, and we’ll see you again next week for another episode of Local Search Tuesdays.