How to Spot and Delete Fake Google Reviews

Google reviews are extremely important to local businesses. Unfortunately, there are people who just like to watch the world burn. These same people are often the source of negative or even fake Google reviews. This is one of the main reasons why independent small businesses need to monitor their Google review results.

Google reviews can encourage or discourage customers. But sometimes false, malicious, or fake Google reviews can be directed at your business. If you've been the victim of such malicious reviews and are wondering how to delete Google reviews, read on.

How to Spot and Delete Fake Google Reviews

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Why Are Google Reviews Important?

Whether you're a garage owner, home service provider, or another small business owner, your Google reviews can attract, educate and convert potential customers. Especially if you've accumulated many positive reviews. Reviews appear next to your company's business listing on Google Maps, which is the first impression of many people who search for you.

No one wants negative reviews, right? Of course not. But it can happen, despite your hard work and attention to your customers. 

Think of negative reviews as an opportunity to show users that your profile is healthy. Negative reviews can be a chance for potential customers to see how you respond to concerns, not just a blemish.

But there's a difference between a justified negative Google review and a fake Google review (due to spam or personal revenge).

We're here to help you know how to spot and delete fake google reviews.

Can You Delete Google Reviews

How to Spot and Delete Fake Google Reviews

Yes, it is possible to delete Google reviews. Specifically, according to Google, reviews posted in direct violation of Google's review policy can be removed.

What types of reviews can be removed from Google?

Google considers these types of reviews to be inappropriate and can be removed:

- Spam or fake
- Restricted
- Illegal
- Sexually explicit
- Terrorist in nature
- Off-topic
- Dangerous
- Derogatory
- A conflict of interest
- Prohibited content 

Google draws attention to the fact that it is important for business owners to only report reviews that directly violate Google's review policy, and not just report reviews because they disagree with what is being said.

What to Consider When Receiving Negative Reviews

Some negative reviews are inevitable, no matter how good your overall online reputation or reputation management strategies are.

If you receive negative reviews as part of your presence on Google Maps, it's important to remember that not all negative reviews are bad. 

By listening to your customers, you'll be able to better serve them and resolve their issues, which will work in your favor in the long run and help you optimize your overall customer experience. 

Check if google reviews are fake

How to Spot and Delete Fake Google Reviews

If you get a negative Google review, you need to determine whether or not it's fake content. 

Fake Google reviews can slip through the cracks and damage your online reputation. If you detect a fake review from a customer, be sure to report the Google review as inappropriate so that it can be removed.

Does Google Automatically Delete Reviews?

There are situations where Google may automatically delete fake reviews from a business page. In accordance with Google's review policy, the company takes steps to automatically detect and delete reviews that are most likely to contain spam, in order to improve the overall user experience on Google and to ensure that the only reviews about your small business are "genuine, relevant, and helpful.

Steps to Spot and Delete Google Reviews

Removing Google reviews can be challenging for small business owners. However, by following the steps below, you can streamline the process.

1. Find reviews on your Google My Business account

The first thing you need to do is check your (GMB) Google My Business account for reviews. If you already know how to do this, you can skip this step.

Follow these steps to check for and respond to Google reviews on your business:

- Verify your business by following Google My Business' instructions for creating your business listing on Google. 
- Log in to your Google My Business account at to view your business listing once it has been verified.
- Click on the Reviews tab to view and respond to all your Google reviews.

Once you are set up to be able to view your reviews, it is important to keep track of them as new reviews are submitted. 

This way, you can read and respond to both negative and positive reviews without delay.

2. Spot fake Google reviews

Sometimes you'll know right away if a review is fake. Some of the telltale signs of obviously false reviews include the following content:

- Strange or vague language
- Tons of spelling mistakes
- Mentions people who don't work for your company

Other types of fake reviews can be harder to spot. For example, the fake reviewer may explain in detail why the company is so horrible.

At first, this may make them seem more credible. However, to spot fake Google reviews, all you need to do is look at your records. 

By comparing the details of the review to the information you have, you should be able to tell if the problem described is real or not.

3. Respond to reviews quickly and politely

How to Spot and Delete Fake Google Reviews

You can't delete negative reviews, but you can respond to them. It's important to respond to reviews in a timely manner, not just respond to negative reviews.

Responding promptly to any reviews about your business shows past customers that you care about their feedback and concerns - if they had a bad experience - and potential new customers can get a sense of what kind of customer experience they might have in doing business with your company.

Effectively managing your company's online reputation requires thought before action. Even otherwise successful businesses can run into problems responding to customer reviews without developing a thoughtful approach to doing so. 

If you have to respond to a negative review, follow these best practices for tracking unhappy customers:

- Acknowledge the problem
- Explain your point of view only if necessary
- Clarify things with the reviewer
- Stay calm
- Don't be emotional.
- Remember: your job is to offer the best customer service. 
- Include your company's contact information so they can contact you for help.

Fortunately, for every negative review you receive, you're likely to have many more customers who share positive experiences. While positive reviews often speak for themselves, it's important to respond to them - you want your happy customers to come back and tell all their friends about you, right?

4. Flag fake google reviews

Google understands that some fake Google reviews may not be automatically flagged by the company's spam detection filters. 

That's why the platform gives business owners the ability to flag these fake reviews through the Google My Business profile.

How to Spot and Delete Fake Google Reviews

Flagging a fake Google review allows the Google team to review the content and decide whether or not it should be removed. Keep in mind that Google won't take action if you and your customers have differing opinions about what happened, and it can take several days for the company to review flagged reviews.

Flag reviews without comments

Google lets users submit reviews without describing their experience. Users can rate your business on a scale of one to five stars without having to justify their reasoning. This makes it easier for dishonest reviewers to leave fake reviews and harder for your business to catch them.

As a general rule, you should flag all negative reviews that don't include a comment. While some of them may be genuine, your most valuable reviews are the ones that explain why your business is great or why it didn't meet expectations. Reviews without comments don't do much for other customers or your business.

Report fake reviews to Google Small Business Support

If a review is particularly damaging in nature or contains extremely inappropriate content, you can escalate the issue by contacting Google Small Business Support, either online or via social media by sending a tweet to @GoogleSmallBiz. It's a good idea to include a screenshot of the issue you're trying to resolve.

5. Get more positive reviews

One of the best ways to compensate for negative reviews is to get more positive reviews. 

By asking for reviews from your customers at the right time, which is immediately after a positive customer experience, you can get more online reviews that contribute to your digital marketing strategy, your SEO, and your overall online reputation on Google, Yelp, and other major review sites. 

For Google, in particular, check out our tips for getting more Google reviews for your business.

Spot and Delete Fake Google Reviews Summary

Want to delete fake Google reviews? You can reply to the reviewer and suggest that they remove the review if you are able to have a private conversation. If that doesn't work, you can flag the review for Google or contact Google Small Business Support. You can also expedite the process via Twitter. Either of these options should allow you to delete malicious, false, or fake reviews from Google.

However, the most effective way to deal with negative reviews is to get more positive reviews.

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