Are one or more of your customers’ reviews not showing up on Google? There are a variety of reasons why this might be happening. Let’s talk about some of the possibilities and what you can do to fix the problem.
Possible issues with Google
It’s possible that your reviews might not be showing up because of Google staffing shortages.
COVID-19 pandemic staff shortages
Due to staff shortages from the COVID-19 pandemic, Google was not supporting reviews and other Google My Business features for a couple of months. However, that doesn’t mean that Google reviews that your customers posted during this time are gone forever. All the Google reviews that customers have submitted during this time will be posted on your Google My Business account when Google has the capability to do so.
On April 8, Google brought back the ability for businesses to respond to reviews, which had previously been removed due to the pandemic.
As of June 3rd, 2020, Google has confirmed that user reviews, user photos, review replies, and Q&A are now available in all countries.
Possible issues with your Google My Business listing
It’s possible that there may be issues with your Google My Business listing that’s preventing your reviews from showing up.
Inaccurate Listing Information
Incorrect listing information can not only hurt your SEO, but it can also reduce the number of reviews that your business gets from customers. Luckily, there’s an easy fix, simply editing the information in your Google My Business profile.
Here’s how you can refresh your Google My Business listing.
- Go to the “Info” section in your GMB profile.
- Click on the icon next to your listing address.
- This pop-up icon should come up. Wiggle the map icon, but make sure that it settles in the right location.
- When you’re done, hit “Apply”.
Duplicate Business Listings
Check to see if there are duplicate Google My Business listings for your business. In this case, it’s possible that a customer posted a review on the duplicate listing.
If it turns out that this was the issue, make sure that the duplicate business listing is deleted immediately. Not only will it cause you to lose reviews, but it will also only confuse your customers. Here’s how Google recommends you report and delete your duplicate listings.
Have you been off of your Google My Business profile for a while? There’s a chance that Google might have unverified your business listing. Google has said that it would unverify businesses that were inactive on Google My Business for more than 6 months.
It’s important that you regain your verification, not only to collect reviews, but also so that you can edit your Google My Business listing and respond to Google reviews. Contact Google support to reverify your business.
Possible issues with the review
If the issue is not with your Google My Business listing, chances are that there is an issue with the review itself. If a review violates Google’s policies, it will be removed. Let’s run through some of the common reasons why a Google review might get removed.
Reviews from current or former employees
Remember, Google reviews are meant to represent the genuine experiences of your customers. If a review comes from a current or former employee, it will be deleted since they come from a biased point of view.
Reviews with links and URLs
Google does not allow reviewers to post reviews with links and URLs to other websites.
You’ve been paying for/ incentivizing reviews
Under no circumstances should you be buying Google reviews. If you’ve been paying for or incentivizing reviews, you will have your reviews deleted. Even worse, Google will penalize your business in search rankings.
Profanity in Google review
Google does not allow reviews with profane language. Reviews that have this kind of language will be deleted.
User deleted review
It’s also possible that for whatever reason, the customer decided to delete their own Google review. The best way of finding this out is by contacting the customer directly and asking them.
How long does it take for a review to show up on Google?
When Google reviews are posted, they may take some time to show up. While you might see these reviews almost instantly, there are reports of business owners needing to wait 2-7 business days to actually see these reviews appear online.
If you don’t have many Google reviews right now, it should not affect how long it takes for your reviews to show up. You’ll find some blogs saying that you need at least 5 reviews for your reviews and overall star rating to show up on Google search. While this may have been true in the past, you will often see Google My Business listings with less than 5 reviews. Your reviews should show even if you have 1-2.
Use disappeared reviews as an opportunity
When your Google reviews disappear, don’t stress out too hard. Instead, let it motivate you to collect more social proof from your customers.
So how can you collect more Google reviews? Send review requests to your customers via text and email with a custom short link to your Google My Business profile. Chances are that your customers will be happy to give you more feedback.
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