1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

6% of Online Reviews are Fake

Discussion in 'Black Hat SEO' started by AndyPR, Oct 10, 2012.

  1. AndyPR

    AndyPR Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2012
    Messages:
    51
    Likes Received:
    27
    Occupation:
    Affiliate manager
    Home Page:
    A survey conducted by E-consultancy has found that the practice of companies buying positive reviews to boost brand image is a growing across many sectors of online commerce. One study showed that between 2 ? 6% of all reviews on sites like Expedia, Hotels.com, TripAdvisor and Yelp are actually bought and paid for by companies looking to enhance their reputation.
     
  2. beaglejuice

    beaglejuice Power Member

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2009
    Messages:
    595
    Likes Received:
    423
    Meaning, if you round off the fake reviews to 10% then 90% are real reviews. Don't you think that's a plus to companies?

     
  3. yogib34r

    yogib34r Newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2012
    Messages:
    20
    Likes Received:
    7
    6% is lower than I would have guessed - maybe its higher in my industry :)
     
  4. moonlighsunligh

    moonlighsunligh Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2010
    Messages:
    1,623
    Likes Received:
    218
    6% are real.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  5. dubious

    dubious Regular Member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2012
    Messages:
    235
    Likes Received:
    222
    Occupation:
    Project Manager/Business Development Manager
    Location:
    Australia
    6% are only determined to be fake, remember a lot of BH stuff is semi off the books for things like reviews under umbrella terms of ORM.

    I think it is much higher in reality.
     
  6. brainstorm1

    brainstorm1 Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2012
    Messages:
    889
    Likes Received:
    329
    Occupation:
    IM full time
    Location:
    Deep south
    Yeah, what are considered to be "fake"? I mean, technically a guy who has 100 of his friends offer a good review for a sample is not fake. It definitely isn't fully authentic, though.

    If they are straight up "fake" (i.e: a man setting up 10 accounts for good reviews) then it is illegal. I wouldn't be surprised if gov. starts cracking down more on the bigger companies. It will definitely scare the little guys too (I'd never mess with fake reviews anymore).
     
  7. Tangy

    Tangy Regular Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2012
    Messages:
    233
    Likes Received:
    82
    Location:
    Vancouver
    There is no question that 6% is far too low. It doesn't take one very long to browse through less-than-popular hotels, books, products, etc. to see that many of the reviewers are one-offs, or faked in some way.

    No idea what the real number is, but I would be very surprised if it was actually 6%.
     
  8. sirgold

    sirgold Supreme Member

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2010
    Messages:
    1,260
    Likes Received:
    645
    Occupation:
    Busy proving the Pareto principle right
    Location:
    A hot one
    I think it's an overly conservative figure. Dunno according to which criteria they exactly determine these things, but based on my professional experience that percentage MUST be higher than 6% ;)
     
  9. beaglejuice

    beaglejuice Power Member

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2009
    Messages:
    595
    Likes Received:
    423
    So let's assume 50% fake from your professional experience. 50% are still real, what's keeping every negative dudes from making money?

     
  10. directaxcess

    directaxcess Power Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2011
    Messages:
    780
    Likes Received:
    154
    Psht, its much higher than 6%. People are too lazy to leave reviews -- companies have to either use BH methods to leave reviews. I can leave hundreds of reviews for a company without leaving a single footprint that can be traced. This kind of stuff can't really be "traced" unless proof of transaction/purchase is required with every review.
     
  11. crazyz

    crazyz Newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2012
    Messages:
    43
    Likes Received:
    14
    Occupation:
    SEO, bio diesel trader, sales.
    Location:
    London
    agree with all the above, 60+ percent is a good guess, Hilton hotels are the best benchmark, they don't do fake reviews because the trouble they would get into would not be worth it, have a look at the reviews for a 500 bed hilton and they hardly have any reviews, but a 30 bedroom cockroach infested shit hole across the street gets thousands of great reviews. I think its the same for most markets, any website that allows anonymous reviews is not trustworthy in IMO and is an open invite for abusers....... like me!
     
  12. scottishhousemove

    scottishhousemove Junior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2011
    Messages:
    129
    Likes Received:
    8
    60% more like !!!!!!!!!!
     
  13. ConversionKing

    ConversionKing Newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2012
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    15
    Occupation:
    Conversion Optimization Consultant
    Location:
    USA
    Home Page:
    The gov has already been filing heavy fines on companies with fake reviews.
    http://www.anrpartnersllc.com/spot-fake-review-online/
     
  14. proweb

    proweb Regular Member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2011
    Messages:
    291
    Likes Received:
    144
    The average joe doesn't leave a review unless the service was bad, they want to prove someone wrong who wrote a bad review, they get some type of incentive when leaving the review, or if they get pestered by the business to review the product (ie: Amazon).

    Therefore, I would say the 6% estimate is way off.

    I used to work in the "make money online" niche and you wouldn't believe the things people would do to get reviews for their product. I've seen guys buy 100's of web cams to mail to their customers and they told them "if you leave us a small testimonial...you can keep the camera". Anyway, they'd do this for about 5-10% of usable video reviews. However, I will say that those video testimonials were the backbone of 2% conversion rates on $100+ products.
     
  15. sirgold

    sirgold Supreme Member

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2010
    Messages:
    1,260
    Likes Received:
    645
    Occupation:
    Busy proving the Pareto principle right
    Location:
    A hot one
    I don't get what you're asking me, here. Care to elaborate? In case you're asking why not ALL the reviews (made by "every negative dudes"?) on every website big or small on the planet are fake is because most ppl don't have the resources, access to the right assets or technical skills to rig every system... I would say there are at least 2 major categories of ppl leaving fake reviews for profit. Last-minute rep management "agencies" improvised by some skid in the basement that will rarely stretch much further than a scrapebox or xrumer (and the likes) run on wordpress, blogengine, forums, article directories etc etc. You can get MASSIVE pollution in a very short time, but maybe not on the major platform that will have more tricky countermeasures. That's where professionals with much broader knowledge and access to the right resources step in. I personally know someone running a business that offers this service 24/7 with real human beings working non-stop on 3 shifts in addition to all the possible automated tools you can think of. Demand is high after all and who doesn't want fake reviews and testimonials about his business? Considering the grand total of the rep management skids that try to make a quick buck by blasting fake reviews and the bh rep management pros that rig the major platforms I find really hard to believe 6% can be a realistic figure.
     
  16. HoNeYBiRD

    HoNeYBiRD Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

    Joined:
    May 1, 2009
    Messages:
    5,905
    Likes Received:
    7,140
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Geographer, Tourism Manager
    Location:
    Ghosted
    i remember reading an article about TripAdvisor a year ago or so, i noted the exact numbers because it's related to my profession (tourism)
    at that time there were 50 million reviews on TripAdvisor, 25 million was older than a year/outdated, we were left with 25 million and out of these 25 million 20% were proven to be fake, 5 million fake reviews submitted in a year

    the situation come to that point when early this year ASA banned TripAdvisor UK from claiming its reviews are real
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2012
  17. KeyzDT

    KeyzDT Power Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2010
    Messages:
    756
    Likes Received:
    365
    honestly Im surprised there arent more. fake reviews are one of the oldest and noobish ways to sell online.
     
  18. bellagio

    bellagio Newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2011
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    5
    I'm with you. Couldn't have said it better. See this stuff happen all the time.

    Worked with a company that was really anal about their reviews, and let's just say there were some shenanigans to make sure things went their way.
    Therefore, I would say the 6% estimate is way off.
     
  19. afrowanksta

    afrowanksta Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2012
    Messages:
    57
    Likes Received:
    8
    6% seems very low
     
  20. Flurbuff

    Flurbuff Regular Member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2010
    Messages:
    227
    Likes Received:
    94
    gonna agree that it's way more than 6%

    whenever i'm shopping i look at reviews just to see if i can count the fake ones. i never use them to actually help me decide on a purchase. it's rare for me to find a review that isn't blatantly fake. most fake reviewers aren't good enough at using the right words and typing like a normal person would.