Being on the receiving end of bad reviews can leave a business owner feeling helpless. As more customers review brands they do business with, reviews are becoming a bigger factor. When customers order their favorite meal with a click of an app, or receive a free dessert for being a loyal customer they are building relationships. Frequent visits and “regulars” are born with every good experience you are able to churn out.
Creating a uniform approach to managing and replying to negative reviews on sites like Google, Yelp, and Facebook is key. Recently, rating and reviewing has become second nature for restaurant patrons. A newly published report from the Pew Research Center shows that a whopping 82 percent of adults say they read online reviews at least some of the time. So, when they visit their favorite pizzeria or taco truck they’re likely to leave a review about it online. If their experience was good or bad, their friends will know about it.
How to Remove Bad Reviews
Now, for the questions of the day. How do I remove bad reviews? And is it even possible?
Removing bad or fraudulent reviews is not easy, but there is a way. The major review platforms all offer a path to dispute and potentially remove a review if it violates their policies. The instructions below are a guide on how to attempt to remove a review from the biggest review platforms of today; Google, Yelp and Facebook.
On Google, reviews that include inappropriate content, conflicts of interest or off-topic commentary will be removed. Also, Google will remove reviews that include contact information, infringe on copyrights or advertise for other businesses.
You don’t have to be logged into any account in order to report a Google review
- Visit Google Maps and enter your business name and city in the search fields.
- Find your business in the results list and click on it.
- Click on the link that shows how many reviews you’ve received.
- Find the review you want removed and click on the flag icon.
- Fill out the “Report a policy violation” page, which asks for your e-mail address and the review’s violation.
Like Google, administrators at Yelp will also remove negative reviews if they:
- Are written by someone with a conflict of interest.
- Aren’t specifically about the writer’s experience with your business.
- Include inappropriate material like hate speech or personal information about employees.
If you feel that a review written about you falls into one of these categories, report it. Double-check Yelp’s guidelines and contact a Yelp administrators and request a review.
Log into your Yelp account for your business (you must create an account and claim the business first). Next, find Yelp’s Find and Claim page. Finally, navigate to the Reviews section of your account and find the negative review you want removed.
Click on the flag icon and report the review.
If a review doesn’t meet Facebook’s Community Standards, you can report it for removal. The standards cover a broad range of things, but they’re very similar to Google’s. Anyone with a Facebook account can request that a review be removed.
- Search for the business’s Facebook page and find the review in question.
- Click on the V-shaped symbol in the upper right corner of the review.
- Click “Report Post” and follow the prompts.
In all these cases, you can’t get negative reviews removed just because you don’t like what they say. That’s why it’s so important to prevent negative reviews from happening in the first place.