The Myth of Perfection: Why a Company with Only 5-Star Reviews May Not Be What It Seems

Last week we did some SEO research for a taxi company that approached us to do their new website & SEO. Part of our process for SEO is to see what competition they’re facing in the city they’re targeting to ensure that the strategy we provide is going to enable them to earn a first page Google ranking (in time) as well as podium spot on the top 3 of Google’s map pack for their main keywords.

One of the interesting things we found, was 1 taxi company who’d been around for less than 3 years, with no website, but who had over 350 x 5 star reviews (note: no reviews were less than 5 stars).

We smelt a rat!

And that prompted us to write an article on the subject and share some insights and warnings about playing the system (as this guy clearly was) about Google reviews. Read on:

google guaranteed

The idea of a company boasting a flawless 5-star review score, particularly when it has accumulated numerous reviews, raises questions about the authenticity of such a rating.

As an experienced SEO agency responsible for managing online reputations for a large number of clients over a wide range of different industries, we have witnessed the fascinating reality of human behaviour when it comes to reviews.

It’s a curious phenomenon – even when clients are genuinely satisfied with a service, they might only leave a 4-star review simply because they believe that perfection is unattainable.

We’ve come to understand that, as the old saying goes, ‘you can’t please all of the people all of the time’. It’s an elusive goal: 2 customers having the exact same experience from your side as a business owner, due to their individual natures and expectations, may value your service less or more.

Thus, the idea of a company boasting a flawless 5-star review score, particularly when it has accumulated numerous reviews, raises questions about the authenticity of such a rating.

So, in this article, we delve into the intricacies of customer reviews, uncovering the truth behind the pursuit of a perfect score and the potential pitfalls of playing the system.

But quickly back to our dodgy taxi company: Let’s do the maths and apply some logic:
Bearing in mind that only people who have Gmail accounts can leave a review on Google (which we estimate from our own experience is at about 1 in 3 people), it means this guy/company has had to have asked over 1000 customers to leave a review for him. On top of that, everyone that did, left him a 5 star review. Just knowing what effort it takes to get people to leave a review in the first place, we call BS on this!

Afterall, when was the last time, as you were jumping out of a taxi, the driver asked you to leave a review (or even followed up with you for one). No. We believe this guy has bought those reviews in the hopes that they will improve his rankings on Google as well as lull customers into a (false) sense of belief that his company is the most brilliant taxi service in the city.

While it is not impossible for a company to have only 5-star reviews on Google, it is quite rare and not necessarily indicative of a completely authentic review profile. Here are a few factors to consider:

1) Subjectivity of Reviews:
Reviews are subjective and reflect the individual experiences and opinions of customers. It is highly unlikely that every single customer will have a flawless experience and rate a company with a perfect 5-star rating.

2) Potential Bias:
Companies with a consistent stream of 5-star reviews might raise suspicions of review manipulation or biased practices:
– Members of networking groups leaving fake reviews for each other, without ever having used the services of the company concerned.
– Buying reviews
– Friends & family
– Self reviewing

Have a look at our article on why you shouldn’t buy or create fake Google reviews.

Google’s algorithms and review guidelines are designed to identify and filter out fake or manipulated reviews. If a company is found to be engaging in such practices, it could face penalties or have its reviews removed. In extreme cases, Google Business Profiles have even been removed by Google as a result of this.

3) Transparency and Credibility:
A diverse range of reviews, including both positive and constructive feedback, helps to establish credibility and authenticity. Customers tend to trust companies with a mix of reviews, as it reflects a more realistic representation of the company’s performance.

4) Customer Expectations:
It is natural for customers to have different expectations and standards of service. Some customers might have high expectations and only leave positive reviews if those expectations are met, while others might be more critical in their assessment.

google guaranteed

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