Why Your Google Reviews Are Disappearing – And What to Do About It
As a small business owner, you know the importance of collecting reviews online. It helps build your reputation and credibility, especially on official sites like your Google My Business (GMB) page.
In fact, Google is the number one place people go to leave and read reviews. According to research by ReviewTrackers, 63.6% of consumers check online reviews on Google before visiting a business. When interested buyers see that other people had positive experiences working with you, they are more likely to trust you with their own business.
So it can be frustrating when you go to check on a review and discover it has disappeared.
If this has happened to you, you’re not alone. This issue has recently affected many small businesses.
Typically, the reason you don’t see reviews is due to Google’s automatic filtering system, but reviews can also disappear because of human error.
Why Does Google Filter Reviews?
Google knows how important it is as a source for unbiased reviews.
It strives to keep the review system as accurate as possible, which is why a rigorous filtering system automatically deletes reviews marked as spammy or potentially fraudulent.
Usually, this algorithm is pretty accurate, but it is far from perfect. There is always the potential for legitimate reviews to be deleted in this process.
6 Reasons Why Your Google Reviews Are Disappearing
If you can figure out why your review disappeared, it’s often easier to help get it restored. Here are some common reasons why Google Reviews may disappear:
The Review Contains Prohibited Information
Google Reviews encourage people to share their thoughts. But like most websites, it also has limits on what people can’t say.
For example, Google automatically deletes reviews that contain prohibited information. This is typically content that violates someone’s privacy, like email addresses and phone numbers. It also deletes reviews that have links in them.
It Violates Google’s Speech Policies
Furthermore, Google will delete reviews that violate their speech policies for online engagement. Hateful or potentially dangerous content will likely be deleted by the filtering process.
This includes sexually explicit content, foul language, and the promotion of illegal activities. Google also filters posts that include bullying or discriminatory language regarding a person’s race, sexuality, age, gender, religion, or disability.
The Review Came From Within Your Business
Another way Google filters reviews is by authenticity. It has the ability to connect the profile and location of a reviewer.
That means, if you’re leaving yourself reviews in an attempt to boost your star rating, chances are you’re not fooling Google. This includes reviews left by your employees—reviews must come from actual customers.
Faking reviews might seem like a harmless way to get your foot in the door and kickstart your business. But if Google catches you cheating too many times, it might apply restrictions to your GMB account.
The Review Was Marked As Fake
Besides prohibiting you from writing your own reviews, Google can determine fake reviews in a few other ways.
For example, if the review came from very far away, it’s not likely to be from a legit customer (unless you ship your goods to other countries). Google will typically delete reviews coming from other countries.
In addition, if it notices a sudden huge influx of reviews, it might consider this spam as well. Finally, it will filter reviews that are duplicated from other places on the web. All of these measures prevent people from purchasing bot reviews from third-party sites.
You’re Inactive on GMB
Being active on GMB is an important part of marketing. Not only is it a convenient way to connect with your customers, but it also verifies the information posted to the account, including reviews.
If you’re not active on GMB for more than six months, your business might become unverified. Then customers will not be able to leave reviews.
Duplicate listings are another reason reviews might get lost. Make sure you claim and verify your Google listing and keep it updated often.
The Reviewer Deleted It
If none of these other reasons seem to make sense, it’s possible that the writer has simply deleted the review.
There isn’t much you can do in this case because there is no error to fix. But if you’re really losing sleep over it, you could politely reach out to the customer and ask them.
What You Can Do About Disappearing Google Reviews
Now that you’ve narrowed down the reasons your Google Reviews are disappearing, you’re probably wondering what you can do to get them back.
If you suspect the review contained prohibited speech, it would be worth it to reach out to the customer and ask them to revise the review. Let them know their opinion means a lot to you, and a little editing can help resolve the issue.
On the other hand, if you think the review was incorrectly marked as fraudulent, you may be able to restore it. You’ll need to submit a form for Google Business support.
It may take a while to get a response, and even then, restoring the review is not a guarantee. That’s why the best way to counteract disappearing reviews is to simply acquire more. Promote your GMB page to happy customers and encourage them to share their thoughts online.
The more consistently you collect reviews, the higher your overall rating will appear.
Your Partner in Online Reputation Management
Running a Google My Business page can be overwhelming, especially when you’re already trying to juggle the stressors of running a business. A digital marketing agency can help by taking on this work for you.
Here at 270net Technologies, we work hard on the technical side so you can focus more on your business. Our SEO Team can elevate your Google Business profile and optimize your online presence.
Contact us today to learn how we can help you!