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Why Would Google Show Some Reviews Over Others?

why would google show some reviews over others?
24 Jun 2016

Even if you do everything right, it may be impossible to keep everyone happy all the time, and eventually, that not-so-glowing review will show up amongst your online reviews. Now you just have to hope that Google doesn’t choose this review to show searchers. So why does Google show some reviews over others? How do they decide which reviews should represent your business? It’s a valid question, and we have an answer.

Why are only certain reviews picked over others on the right sidebar?

Online reviews are one of the main signals Google looks at for local search results. Not only are they used to determine your ranking on Google, some of them are also shown to the right-side in Google search results, so they can have a huge impact on your click-through-rate and potential customers. So how does Google choose which online reviews to show? Their main goal is to filter out fake reviews, so they monitor online reviews for warning signs.

If your positive Google reviews fit any of the following criteria, there is a good chance that’s why Google chose to skip over them and opted for negative reviews instead:

  • Google pays attention to how quickly your reviews are coming in. If they notice that you received a lot of online reviews in a very short timeframe, or if there were multiple reviews from the same IP address, then Google will likely hide these reviews from their search results. A slow and steady increase in reviews is ideal because it means they are probably legitimate.
  • Similar to rules regarding duplicate webpage content, if Google detects similar wording in your online reviews, they will just skip over them and opt to show reviews that are unique.
  • Another red flag is if it is the person’s first time reviewing something. Yes, everyone has to start somewhere, but to Google, it could mean you specifically asked that person to review your product/business, and it might not be as trustworthy.
  • Sometimes, Google will skip over the online reviews that are too positive or too negative. While they aren’t always fake, Google feels that an overly excited/disappointed review could be dishonest.
  • If an online review is too short, or not on topic, then Google will probably skip over it for a review that can provide the reader with more helpful information.

What can I do to help my positive Google reviews gain clout?

While you can’t exactly edit any customer reviews, for good reason, you can work hard to make sure your positive reviews won’t raise any red flags. While collecting email addresses and asking for Google reviews is a strong tactic, make sure to space out the requests. Encourage users to leave detailed comments, and reiterate that it’s okay if they have a few constructive pointers in addition to their positive remarks.

So why would Google show some reviews over others? In short, they want to make sure that the online reviews they are showing to their users are legitimate. If you want to generate more high-quality reviews to counterbalance negative ones, contact Zero Gravity Marketing today.