If you have noticed that your Google reviews have gone missing, you are not alone. This may have occurred because numerous Google My Business pages have become suddenly “unverified” for no apparent reason. This could have caused your coveted, hard-won reviews to be removed from Google profiles, Google Maps listings, and search page results. But what can you do?
First – don’t panic!
The first step in possibly recovering your Google reviews and preventing their disappearance in the future is figuring out why they were removed. The most common reason is that Google’s spam detection algorithm flagged some of your reviews for removal.
But why? Even if your reviews are legitimate, there are several reasons this can happen, including:
- The review includes a URL. This is against the rules, and sometimes these are deleted immediately.
- There is a phone number in the review. This may trigger a spam alert, since phone numbers are not necessary in a review.
- The review contains a word Google disapproves of. This could be a profanity or a racial term.
- Your review appeared elsewhere on the internet. If an identical review appears someplace else, it may be removed.
- Your reviews do not appear anywhere but Google My Business. If you have numerous reviews here – but not anywhere else – it may be interpreted as spam.
- The reviewer works for you. This goes against Google guidelines. This offense can be traced because you may share the same IP address as the reviewer.
- Your reviewer has a blank Google account. This could indicate a fake review.
- The review was written by a third person. Reviewers are not permitted to leave comments on behalf of someone else.
- You offered an incentive for writing a review. Although incentive-inspired reviews are not usually caught by the algorithm, competitors may report you for this, for obvious reasons.
There are many other reasons beyond the above that could cause a Google review to be removed, but there may be a way to retrieve what you have lost, and to prevent losses in the future.
Refresh and Recover
For example, if you refresh your Google business profile, you may be able to restore it back to normal. If that fails, you can try clearing your browser’s cache.
Here’s how to refresh your Google business profile:
- Log into your Google My Business account, open the menu, and choose “All Locations”
- If prompted, confirm that you are authorized to manage the business page, and agree to the Terms of Service
- Click on “Manage Location”
- Wiggle the map marker and save
Keep in mind that a long period of inactivity on Google can also impact the way a page is displayed. Google has been reaching out to owners of local pages who have been inactive for six months, so pay attention and respond immediately if this occurs. If you have not shown any activity – such as uploading or sharing photos, responding to reviews, and so on – you may be at risk of your page becoming unverified.
But if you heed the reasons listed above, follow Google rules for reviews, and you take any steps necessary to ensure that your Google My Business pages remain verified, those lovely reviews you worked so hard to earn should remain.
We Can Help You Protect Your Treasured Reviews!
Reviews can enhance your credibility, which is especially important in a business where a trusted relationship is paramount. We can help to ensure that the reviews you worked so hard to earn are used property and are protected from deletion. As a boutique digital marketing firm, Premier Legal Marketing (PLM) offers the very best in personalized service. Call us today at 856-320-2016 or contact us online to learn more about PLM’s internet marketing services for lawyers.