An investigation by consumer group Which? has found online sellers are offering free goods for positive product reviews, all with the aim of improving their online reputation.
Investigators employed by Which? joined several ‘rewards for reviews’ groups where they were hired to write positive reviews in return for free products.
This method of paying for reviews goes against the rules set out by platforms such as Amazon and Facebook and unfortunately sets a bad president for the community of consumers who trust reviews in order to purchase high-quality products and services.
A similar investigation by the BBC was conducted and also uncovered the trade in false reviews.
The investigations found that not only are these ‘reward for reviews’ sites bribing customers for positive reviews, the Which? investigators found five sellers “who gave instructions to order an item through Amazon, write a review and share the link, with the promise of a refund.”
On following these instructions, three of these sellers did not provide a refund as they either could no longer be contacted or refused to give a refund as the review was not positive enough.
In another example, an investigator was given a smartwatch but only gave it a two-star review. They were then told by the online seller to re-write the review as the product was free and therefore it “is the default to give five-star evaluation".
The Which? investigation concluded that the online sellers were effectively ripping people off with paid reviews.
Both Amazon and Facebook state that they do not tolerate such behaviour, however both the BBC and Which? investigations found forums where consumers were able to part take in such behaviour.
It’s important to remember when managing online reviews a company does not benefit from paying customers to write positive reviews. This style of customer feedback, in the long run, is detrimental to a company’s reputation as they cannot truly understand the needs of their customers.
Paying for reviews is a sure fire way to lose your customer base, your competitive edge and your online reputation altogether. It might take longer, but encouraging your customers to leave authentic reviews with customer feedback software like Jago, is the winning solution to a successful company.
At Jago, we connect the dots between customer feedback and its influence on online reviews. Our customer feedback software allows a unique opportunity to collect real-time feedback, which means we can convert happy customers into advocates by encouraging them to share their positive reviews. This will not only boost your brand’s online reputation but can also bring a better return on investments for your sales and marketing strategies.
Jago understands that the world of online reviews and customer feedback can be daunting. Which is why we have made it simple to integrate our software into your current business strategy. You can start listening to your customers, monitoring your online reviews and building an authentic online reputation at the click of a button. Don’t underestimate the power of authentic customer feedback, start your journey today with Jago. Book a free demo!