Importance of blogging

As the New Year looms ever closer, and this next one being a new decade too, marketeers all over are rethinking their strategy for the year. In the case of M3, we do the same, not just for us, but for our clients too.

This year we have been back to basics and revisited our Business Model Canvass. A lengthy team meeting over a working lunch helped us identify where we want to go as a business in 2020, and moreover what we want to be reputed for.

This we based not only on our strengths and great SEO and Paid Ads results, but also profitability, PITA (painfulness) factor, internal skillsets, and the type of business we really want to work with.

In addition we calculated our actual cost per hour at a capacity of 80% (which in truth is realistic for most companies, but feels like we are working at 180% capacity at times here!). This helped us identify which services we wish to promote this year.

Our business model for 2020 unearthed a particular strength in Search Engine Optimisation for our clients, and in particular for the health, manufacturing, engineering and recruitment market sectors (although in truth, we can produce excellent results for most business sectors).

Our business model not only identified that we are excellent at SEO and Paid Ads work for our clients, but also that we are very competitively priced for what we offer within our SEO packages and Paid Ads management fees.

So a campaign to promote our SEO and Paid Ads services is now underway, with SEO, Paid advertising and Email marketing being at the core of every campaign, we want to be known as the Search Engine Optimsation (SEO) go to company in not just Northamptonshire, Cheshire and the surrounding areas, but UK wide.

The Challenge with offering SEO Services

The problem we face is that people are unsure of what they really need, and some do not know what SEO or Search Engine Optimsation (Or sometimes called Search Engine Marketing) actually is, how it works and what it does for companies. People really do not understand what their money spent with us does for them unless we explain it by showing results.

The truth is that if we were to sell it as it is, people would never buy. The reality is that SEO is when a company like ours works with a company like yours to try to get your website found for the search terms that people are typing into Google to find products and services just like yours. So in fact what we are selling is a dream, rather than an actual hard product. In addition, because there are so many elements around that affect what we do (for example, your competition may do something that affects your results, Google may change its’s algorithm again, or the keywords that we researched a few months ago may change as people move around and start new jobs etc.), this means there are no guarantees either. In fact Google will tell you that if anyone guarantees that you will be found first on Google, then do not trust them as it is impossible to guarantee this.
So we have to show the value in what we do.

SEO Company that offers value

So when we work with a company like yours to get you found as high as possible on Google, we work through a number of things with you which include:

  • We research the words people are typing in right now to find products and services that you offer.
  • We look at your website to see if once we drive the right kind of traffic to your website, that it will convert into sales or enquiries.
  • We do the technical work on your website to ensure that the structure of the pages we are optimising will work for Google.
  • We look to improve the links pointing back to your website. We do not get masses of irrelevant links, but a few good quality and relevant backlinks that relate to your specific products and services.
  • We look at your Social Media posts to see how they can be improved for search.
  • We look at your content on the website and work with you to enhance this as well.
  • We report on all our activities undertaken, what we have achieved, and what may require more work.
  • We continually analyse what has worked for your specific website and adjust our campaigns accordingly.
  • We continually make recommendations that will help you improve not only your position on Google, but also tweaks to improve conversion based on factual analytics.

And all this for a reasonable, affordable monthly price.

We are not like the others! We don’t consider ourselves to be your SEO Supplier, but we do consider that we are an extension to your team, working with you to get the results you need to grow your business.

We are not the cheapest option, but we do offer great value for money.
If you are looking for a great SEO company to work with, in the Northampton, Cheshire and surrounding areas and further afield across the UK… then please do not hesitate to call us and we can talk things through with you.

Don’t be an SEO sheep, stand out from the crowd. We look forward to hearing from you.

Call 01604 328899 or email tracy@m3sm.co.uk

Marketing Metrics

Marketing Metrics – Measuring the success (or failure) of your Marketing efforts

When spending time and money marketing your business, it is important to be able to understand exactly what is working and what is not working. Top line… it’s the bottom line that counts. Use Marketing Metrics to help you better understand.

So, where and how do you start to understand all the data in a meaningful way that ensures that your marketing time and budget is well spent.
We have produced a great document that you can download completely Free of Charge. No obligation, no commitment. All we ask is that you think of us when you next need help, and that you share this webpage to those people you think would benefit.

The guide explains things simply and includes examples of marketing metrics calculations to make life really simple.

Marketing Metrics included are:

  • Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)
  • Customer Lifetime Value (LTV)
  • CAC (Customer Acquisition Cost) Payback Time
  • Average Lead Close Rate
  • Marketing Originated Customer Percentage
  • Marketing Influenced Customer Percentage

Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)

The Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) is the average amount that you spend to acquire a new customer. This is important because the more you have to pay for a new customer, the lower your margins. As a marketing agency, we want to help you achieve a lower CAC in order to  provide a higher return on investment.

Customer Lifetime Value (LTV)

In this metric we want to compare the lifetime value (LTV) of each customer to their cost to acquire that customer. Why does Lifetime Value matter? Many businesses fail to realise the actual amount of revenue a single customer generates for their business. Instead of only focusing only on a single sale, use the complete value of that customer over the lifetime of their engagement
with you.

CAC (Customer Acquisition Cost) Payback Time

You truly care about two things – revenue being brought in and how much it costs them to generate that revenue. The CAC payback time looks at how long it will take to payback the investment made to acquire a new customer. While it depends on the industry that you are in, in general the ideal Cost to Acquire a Customer Payback Time is under 12 months. High performing businesses may see payback time as low as 5-7 months. The sooner the payback, the sooner your clients are profitable with each customer.

Average Lead Close rate

It’s not good enough to just generate tons and tons of leads. A lead that never converts into a customer is essentially worthless. You want to show how qualified your leads are with this metric. The lead close rate will be highly dependent on the industry that you are in, but it can also show symptoms of internal issues within your organisation or within your marketing efforts.

Marketing Originated Customer Percentage

Here you’re really starting to see the value of everything that you’re doing. This metric directly ties your marketing efforts to your bottom line. Your Marketing Originated Customer percentage is a measure of how many new customers that you have generated  that you would not have had without that marketing. It’s a much more concrete evaluation of your efforts than just number of leads and customers.

Marketing Influenced Customer Percentage

The previous metric was all about new customers that originated because of your marketing efforts. This metric is all about the number of customers that are closed after interacting with your marketing. Leads can come from anywhere: marketing, word-of-mouth, referrals, Google, networking, etc. Whether you generated that lead with your marketing efforts or not, you need to understand how many customers interacted with your marketing efforts in order to understand how effective they are.

GET YOUR FREE DOWNLOAD HERE:

6-bottom-line-marketing-metrics-your-clients-care-about

When it comes to content and SEO what exactly is it that Google is looking for?

What is the best length of content you should have on a page?
Should the content be written for SEO or for people? 
Even as an SEO expert company, everything changes so quickly that it can be hard to keep up. However, we are resolute in our continued development of our team, and ongoing learning is an everyday essential part of our job, and our knowledge is something we love to share.
Delivering training courses, webinars and seminars are all in a days work for us, and we simply have to be ahead of the curve. So with that in mind, let’s answer a few of those questions.
What exactly is it that Google is looking for?
We can of course only make an assumption here, but as a business, Google would be looking for market share, and to do that it must give the very best user experience to those who use Google as it’s search engine. After all, if Bing were better, then we would all be using Bing and Binging instead of Googling.
So, if you can imagine that to give it’s users the best experience, it should only show relevant websites to its queried search terms, and also websites that are secure, mobile friendly and quick to load.
That’s what we aim for when we are looking to optimise a clients website. Security, Speed and Mobile Friendly sites get ranked more easily than those which are not on https, are not mobile friendly and are very slow to load.
When we watch the changes happening in our SERPS results, we reverse engineer everything to work out what the latest change is all about, and in 2017 Website Security, Speed and Mobile Friendliness were key for SEO.
What is the best length of content you should have on a page?
This is one with an answer that you will all very much dislike us for. When you look at all the research, and we look at our own websites and the length of content on the pages and posts, it is obvious that the more the better, and in fact it seems that 3000 words is optimum. For now anyway). So get writing!
Should the content be written for SEO or for people? 
We think this is obvious, but we get asked this all the time, so perhaps it is not so obvious when you are not in the SEO and Content “Loop”, but content should be created with the user in mind, not for SEO. When you write about a subject on your website, that is related to your website, and you understand it, are passionate about it and can offer real insight and value to your client or prospect at different stages of their customer journey, then Google will easily be able to determine what is great content and what is not. In addition, if you are writing for people, then it will be more easily read, more engaging and more likely to be shared with colleagues or friends and family.
Remember we said that Google would most likely be looking at User Experience?
Well given that Google also have access to Google Analytics and Webmasters relating to your website, they can see how many pages that visitor has viewed, how long they spent on each page and therefore how engaged they were. This is key in determining if your site is relevant to a search query – after all, if you land on a website and it is not relevant – you flip straight off again.
We hope this helps and makes perfect sense, but if you do have any questions, please do not hesitate to make contact 

Trusted Digital Media Advisers

Trusted Digital Media Advisers

Yesterday two members of the M3 team went to Google in London for a days training with a view to gain an additional qualification as a Google Certified Trusted Digital Media Advisers.
The day started with the usual networking, and then a quick overview of this new initiative from Google. In fact, this was the launch event where around just 100 Google Partners from across the UK came together to learn new skills and hopefully gain the qualification. With 2 places per agency, this means that there are currently only around 50 agencies who would have been given this opportunity.
With education on SERPS (SEO), paid advertising and other methods of ensuring our customers can make the most of the digital age and the opportunity it presents, this was an intense boot-camp style day.
The benchmark was set high, with all the Google employees who attended the event sitting the exam just the day before, under the same conditions we ourselves, we are pleased to announce that both Gemma and Tracy passed with flying colours. In fact, even beating some of the Google team scores!
With all the knowledge gained from the day, and the ongoing Google insights, M3 have decided to share that knowledge at a regular monthly event, details of which can be found here:
Digital Masterclass Events
If the uptake is good, Google have promised to attend an event here, so please pass on the link to anyone who you feel may benefit from a training session or two on the latest from Google.
Thanks, and looking to see you soon…
Tracy and Gemma
Trusted Digital Media Advisors – as Certified by Google
Trusted Digital Media Advisers

Voice Recognition and Search

Did you know that 20% of mobile searches on Google are done using Voice recognition?

What does this mean for you? 
Your website is probably optimised for search in the traditional way, but now is the time to start thinking about the different ways people will search for products and services just like yours.
If you are Business to Consumer, the average of 20% is probably higher. But even Business to Business need to take Voice search into consideration.
You will have seen the adverts for Alexa and Google home, you may have your smart phone connected to your car via bluetooth, you will have questioned Siri on your iPad.
In each instance, when you search for information, you speak it. The way we speak to our smart devices is very different to the way we type.
We will show you some of the queries that are making an impact for our clients right now!

Questions people speak to search

When people are on the move, we are finding they are asking their smartphones to find “near me” places.
Let’s look at traditional types searches.

With voice recognition, the wording changes completely, and the above typed search queries are now spoken as below:

  • Find a hotel near me
  • Find a Chinese restaurant near me
  • Massage therapist near me
  • Find a car repair shop near me
  • Pizza delivery near me
  • Carpet cleaning service near me

You can see that people are asking questions of their device, and so comes a dilemma for your website.

How do you get found for these type of queries?

Google is all about presenting relevant content (not just words, but images and videos too) to the people who are searching, Google is looking for well constructed web pages that are safe and secure, quick to load, mobile friendly and are relevant for that particular search query. It want’s to showcase new, fresh and original content as much as possible too.
You need to ensure that you are writing original content that is genuinely of interest to people. Please note that I am saying of interest to PEOPLE, not to Google. Your readers determine a part of the Google algorithm but showing an interest in your webpage and others leading from that page.
If you are finding this interesting, for example, you may look at other pages of our website, and this web page engagement lets Google know that the page was interesting and therefore relevant to that search. If I had optimised this page just for Google, you may find it boring, and will literally bounce straight off the page and onto something more interesting elsewhere.
Within your content, you may be able to answer some of the questions people are asking.
It’s not just near me queries, but others too such as:

How does ??? What is ??? What does ???

Questions can be answered by way of content that helps your business not only get found, but become a resource of valuable information too.

Answering questions helps clients and prospects understand your knowledge, and therefore you become the “go to” company of choice.
Content is still king, and we can’t see that changing any time soon.

Google SEO

Recently, Google released a new video all about SEO and how to hire an SEO expert near you! What is interesting is the number of SEO companies who are now actively sharing this video exclaiming that all along they have been Optimising websites using Google Best Practices and with you as a customer in mind.
Well, we totally agree and are also going to share this “How to Hire an SEO” video with you.

What is also interesting are the number of “SEO” companies who are not happy to share this, and we think this is very telling.
As a business ourselves, we want value for money and to work with companies who understand our business and want to help us grow and grow with us. We want  to work with companies who are transparent, honest and talk with us.
Why would our clients be any different? 
As Google says, SEO is not just about rankings and getting clicks on a website, if that were the case, my job would be easy. I could just sit here clicking away. But, SEO is all about the user experience from the starting point of their specific customer journey, to their onsite experience and ultimately the sale and even after sale service.
We work with all our clients to understand their business and their potential clients, to identify who wants what information at different times of their experience with our clients website, and to make that journey as simple as possible.
We are not about clicks, but we are about converting your website visitors into loyal customers, giving you lifetime value from each sale we achieve as a team.
Please do watch the video and contact us if you have any questions at all or simply request your FREE SEO web audit by clicking here >>

According to Hubspots recently released 8th Annual Report, the inexorable rise in the use of mobile technology is increasing the importance of inbound marketing methodology, suggesting even that in the next few years traditional marketing and sales as we know it will no longer exist. So what changes in Inbound Marketing for 2017 do businesses need to make?
What is inbound marketing?  Wikipedia define inbound marketing as “the promotion of a company or other organisation through blogs, podcasts, video, eBooks, newsletters, whitepapers, SEO, physical products, social media marketing, and other forms of content marketing which serve to attract customers through the different stages of the purchase funnel.”
inbound-mark-jan17
 
Changes in technology and buyer behaviour are making it more difficult for traditional sales approaches as 57% of salespeople feel buyers today are less dependent on salespeople during the decision-making process.
Instead, 62% of buyers turn to search engines and 48% to websites, according to HubSpot Research.
“Technology has really shifted the power from the rep to the buyer,” says Brian Halligan, Co-founder and CEO, HubSpot. “Salespeople today have to transform the way they sell to match with the modern buyer.”
So how should we as business owners respond to the changes in inbound marketing?
We should engage potential customers with the content they want to read in the places where they want to read it.  Two out of three adults use social media to keep up with the news and over 2 billion people use Facebook to search for content every day.  Over 60% of marketers are planning to produce more Blog content in 2017.
And we should aim to educate and inform rather than sell, sell, sell.  More buyers are using customer reviews and case studies to inform their buying decision.
For more information on how M3SM can work with you to improve your inbound marketing strategy for 2017, please contact us today.

Importance of blogging

 

Did you know that over 60% of Marketers are prioritising Blog posts for 2017?

In the past there has been some debate as to whether the importance of blogging is still relevant in today’s social media marketing environment, but most businesses recognise blog posts as a key part of their marketing strategy. Regardless if you are a small business, or a multinational company, blogging is integral to your online content marketing strategy.

Why are blog posts important to your business:

  1. Blogs drive traffic to your website – the more targeted and relevant the content in your blog, the more relevant the additional visitors that your website will receive. Make your website blog the main foundation for other social media platforms. Don’t forget to add links to your blog to direct readers to specific pages on your website.
  1. Blogs improve your Search Engine rankings and fresh content is key to your website being more prominent than your competitors. Use keywords in your articles. List out the keywords, topics, and categories you want your business to be found for and use these words, and related expressions when writing your posts.
  1. Blogs help position your brand as an industry leader – well written articles demonstrate your company as an authority and expert. By posting topics which resonate with your market and show your knowledge, you are emphasising the product or service skills needed to succeed in your business sector.
  1. Blogs aid in developing better customer relationships. Blogs provide another source to deepen the connection with your customer. By connecting directly on your website and social media, your clients are able to get to know your business or product and you have an opportunity for interaction and trust.

A recent Roper Survey of business decision makers found that 80% prefer to get information about a prospective purchase from articles instead of advertising. The same survey found that 70% say content makes them feel closer to the sponsoring company and 60% say content helps them make better buying decisions.
Here at M3SM, we work closely with our customers to create and use targeted, relevant and unique blogging content.  If you need help with your Blogs please contact M3SM today at info@m3sm.co.uk

Social Influencer

Social proof, Wikipedia suggests that “ social influence (or social proof) is a psychological phenomenon where people assume the actions of others reflect correct behaviour for a given situation”.

For example, if you see a group of people looking up in the sky do you look up too? Or when you see a line of customers waiting to eat at a restaurant, are you more interested in what that restaurant is doing well?  What’s the relevance to your business?  Well reports suggest that when a friend or family member recommends a product or service 83% of people say they trust these recommendations over any other form of advertising
sheep-social proof
So how do you build social influence for your business?  Research suggests there are actually five different types of social proof.
1) Expert Social Proof
Expert social proof is when an industry thought leader or influencer approves of your product. This could take the form of them blogging, posting on social media, or being quoted or photographed as a product user.
2) Celebrity Social Proof
Celebrity social proof typically takes the form of a celebrity using a product and promoting it on social media or in public. This form of social proof is especially meaningful if the endorsement is unpaid.
3) User Social Proof
User social proof consists of positive feedback from actual users, typically taking the form of customer reviews and testimonials.
4) “Wisdom of the Crowds” Social Proof
This social proof appeals to our Fear of Missing Out (FOMO): When lots of people are using or buying a product, others want to follow suit.
5) “Wisdom of your Friends” Social Proof
“Wisdom of your Friends” refers to the recommendations from people we know and trust carrying far more weight than other types of promotions or advertising.

How to build your Social Influence

So if you want to use social media to build your social influence, here are some statistics and tips on best practice:

  • 66% of consumers trust customer reviews online. Build reviews of your company’s products or services.
  • 77% of consumers say that word-of-mouth from family and friends is the most persuasive way to get information about new products. Social Media platforms are the best, quickest and potentially cheapest way of promoting word of mouth marketing.
  • Similarly, 86% of female shoppers say they put the most trust in product recommendations from real people — either industry bloggers or people they know — more than celebrities.
  • 60% of consumers prefer to make purchases from brands they are familiar with so advertise and promote your brand on multiple platforms.
  • Excessive negative customer reviews in Google Search results can result in a loss of up to 70% of potential customers.
  • Testimonials featuring photos perform best.
  • Prominent client logos in testimonials are highly memorable.

Examples of social influence:

Amazon provides a great example of how customer reviews and testimonials can be used. In their review sections, they publish the breakdown of the different ratings so visitors can easily see if the majority of purchasers were happy or unhappy with what they bought. Customers can also publish reviews with specific comments and photos of their purchases, which are more eye-catching forms of social proof for visitors than testimonials alone.
social-proof
Fitbit lets health and tech industry experts speak to the quality of their products in the “Buzz” section of their website. It adds a lot of weight to claims of Fitbit’s success when multiple publications are saying the same positive things they are. That could be why Fitbit is often rated the top fitness tracker on the market.
social-proof2
Facebook suggests Pages and articles for users based on how their friends are interacting with the social media platform. This form of social proof is supported by our inherent trust in people we already know:  we take our friends’ recommendations more seriously than any other type of advertising.
social-proof3
Here at M3SM, we help our customers build their social influence. From building attractive social media accounts, to adding social sharing and follow buttons to their website blogs, to developing interesting new content and implementing processes for gathering customer reviews and interactions.  If you would like to understand how we can help your business grow, contact us today.

Do you have Unwanted Website Traffic?

All sites are regularly attacked by hackers , spambots, spammers….
Using Google Analytics we can break down visitors to IP, Location, City  and we often find unwanted visitors from various parts of the world. The greatest numbers of attacks we are seeing currently are coming from Russia, China and India (not exclusively).

So what’s the impact?

Spammers create unwanted comments on your blogs, you can try blocking IP’s to prevent the same person spamming , but often harden spammers create new IP’s to prevent blocking.
Hackers will add x-scripting code, try logins, DDos attacks and more. They check for vulnerabilities and will try until they find a weakness to gain entry to your website.
A Spambot  is an automated computer program designed to assist in the sending of spam. Spambots usually create fake accounts and send spam using them, although in many cases it would be obvious that a Spambot is sending it. This has led to the development of password-cracking Spambots that are able to send spam using other people’s accounts. They  affect bounce rates and damages SEO results.

Can I stop them?

In short no. Not without locking your site down so tightly that you limit your audience to only people you know.

What can I do to limit these attacks?

One answer we have found is to block traffic from a whole Country. If we have no plans to deal with companies in Russia or China in fact we only want to promote ourselves in English speaking Countries and Europe. So if  we block all traffic from all other Countries it will reduce the potential of unwanted traffic and therefore lessen the risk and damage of a hack, and dramatically improve your bounce rate and automatically improve your search rankings results.

How can I achieve this?

M3 Strategic Marketing offer a solution that will not only help prevent unwanted attacks from specified Countries, but will ensure your bounce rate is reduced, meaning Google will see your website as being more relevant and will no doubt show the site for search more, thus helping your SEO Positioning too. The Wordfence Premium plugin enables you to block visits by Country, and is something we can download, configure and implement on your behalf based on your specific needs.
If you need help understanding your Google Analytics, or would like to discuss adding Wordfence premium to your WordPress website, please contact us.

Penguin is the designated name that Google has given to a series of algorithm changes designed to battle spam link tactics and monitor the quality of links to a website. The Google Penguin program started in April 2012 and immediately had an impact on website owners and the digital industry. Sites that were deemed to be breaking the rules by over-reliance on poor quality or spam links suddenly dropped from the Google search results, many of them are still struggling to recover.
3d Penguin offers you his magnifying glassWhilst there have been several updates over the last few years, the Penguin 4 update expected in 2016 is expected to make significant changes again. Penguin 4 is rumoured to be a ‘real-time’ update to the algorithm. This means that the Penguin portion of the algorithm will always be ‘on’ and updating. This means Google can analyse link profiles more quickly and will help keep sites from ranking well if considered poor quality.

So what can you do to be ready for Google Penguin 4?

The first priority is to analyse your website’s link profile and check whether those links pointing to your site are natural and beneficial. Are some obviously paid for or from incredibly low quality websites? If so, then these links could actually harm your website and you need to get rid of them. This can be done manually by contacting webmasters and asking them to remove the link, which can be a very time consuming process, or alternatively submit a disavow request to Google listing the links to your website that you don’t want it to consider.
At M3SM we have tools to analyse your current website link profile and can devise a plan to address any issues you may have with the quality of your links.

And then what?

Once any ‘spammy’ links are removed businesses should then have a plan to build decent, high-authority links to their website instead. ‘Good’ links will always remain one of the most important ranking factors for search engines.

How can M3SM help build ‘good’ links?

Here at M3SM we have always used ethical techniques to build high quality links naturally.
There are many ways to do this but important examples:

  • * Content – by creating real value for your website visitors with unique engaging content that offers solutions to people. The content may take many forms – blogs, whitepapers, videos, infographics – but the more valuable your content, the more links you’ll build.
  • * Partner with customers, suppliers and industry bodies. Links from relevant websites in your industry will carry credibility for your customers and the search engines.
  • * Business Directories will often provide a website link with your business listing. These listings are often free to complete and will potentially direct relevant industry visitors to you website.
  • * Social sites / Forums – if you have relevant content, comments or opinions there are now many online platforms where you can connect and link.
  • * Local organisations – particularly useful for local businesses – many societies, charities, sports clubs etc. are pleased to link with businesses involved in the community.

So if you want to understand how to benefit from Google Updates and Penguin 4 in particular please contact M3SM today. Working with you every step of the way, we’ll analyse your business and develop a bespoke plan to maximise your business.

Did not publish my review

It was announced on the BBC News site this morning that an alarming number of businesses are creating fake reviews on the web, or cherry picking reviews in order that only the good ones show. Fake reviews damage trust and so it is important that we can understand how reviews work and how we can be sure the reviews on the site are real.
Let me give you an example. Many years ago I spoke to a company in Aylesbury, England who had previously engaged the services of an SEO “expert”. They were doing very well locally and were very pleased with the results. However, as soon as they decided to stop with this SEO “Expert” their local results plummeted.
On investigation, we could see that their web presence locally had been enhanced through the use of fake reviews. The SEO “expert” (it makes me very angry to call him this) had simply created 10 fake reviews a month, using exactly the same words, just creating a new user.

How do YOU spot fake reviews?

When you are looking for a product or service, it may be a holiday, or white goods or… well anything really, you may want to look online and read about other peoples experiences with the company you are looking to buy from, or the product itself.  We need the reviews to be real, honest and therefore trustworthy in order that we can all benefit from these crowd-sharing tools.

Our top tips for spotting fake online reviews are:

  1. CHECK THE SCORE – If someone has 10/10 every single time, they may be cherry picking. Don’t get me wrong, some people really are very good at what they do, but when you see this, it is time to look at multiple review sites to see if it is similar across them all. So, if on one review site the company consistently scores 10/10 yet on another they score 5/10 then you know these reviews are probably not real.
  2. CHECK THE REVIEWER – When you look at the review, you can generally find out a little more about the person making that review, and often you can see the other reviews this person has made. If this person has made many reviews and they are all great, then this person is either very easy to please, only rates and never critiques, or is fake. Generally, as individuals,  we stick to a few Social media and Review sites. If your reviewer is appearing on multiple review sites and giving the same reviews over an over, they may have a lot of time on their hands, or they are not real people.
  3. CHECK THE RESPONSES – Often a fake review is just that, no engagement. Simply put, when people create a fake review, why would they then sign in and comment? Some fake reviews of course can be created by family and friends, and then a comment may be added, but as a rule, fake reviews do not get feedback.
  4. CHECK FOR CHERRY PICKING – This one is a tough one, how can you tell if a company is hiding (not publishing) bad reviews? When comparing other review websites, you can often find comments made about companies where they actually say “I commented on… the did not publish”. As you can see from the screenshot, a simple search will identify if this is the case, simply add in the company name or product name to get more relevant results.

Did not publish my review
It is important for you the consumer to keep review sites honest and reliable, so please SHARE these tips and educate your friends and family in order that we can all benefit from the knowledge shared by real people.

KEEP OUR REVIEW SITES REAL!