Google reviews are highly valuable and essential for businesses as they can:
- Help to establish trust
- Influence purchasing decisions
- Improve search engine visibility
- Provide feedback on your business
- Foster engagement with customers
- Offer a competitive advantage
As such, businesses that actively encourage their customers to leave reviews and effectively manage their online reputation can yield significant benefits.
However, there are instances where you might notice that your Google reviews are not showing up as expected. Perhaps you had a review that’s disappeared? Or perhaps a customer you’ve asked to leave a review has done so, but it’s not showing up?
The latter has happened to us multiple times and can be extremely frustrating as there’s seemingly no reason as to why it isn’t showing.
So, in this blog post, we’ll be exploring some possible reasons behind Google reviews not showing up or disappearing and will shed some light on how it can be addressed.
So, let’s dive in!
H2: What Do Google Say?
Firstly, let’s take a look at why Google say about why reviews might not be showing up in their Help Centre:
“There are several reasons why reviews may be removed from the page. In most cases, missing reviews were removed for policy violations like spam or inappropriate content.
We do not reinstate reviews that were removed for policy violations. These removal measures help make sure that reviews on Google properties are relevant, helpful and trustworthy. Learn about prohibited and restricted content for reviews.
Reviews can sometimes be removed from a Business Profile after a reinstatement. If you lost reviews when your profile was disabled or suspended and then reinstated, contact support for assistance.
Tip: If you set a future opening date for your business that hasn’t opened yet, any reviews left before it’s open to the public will be removed”.
Google has strict review policies in place to ensure that it operates a fair and trustworthy platform.
If a review violates any of these policies, for example, contains hate speech, profanity, or personal attacks, then it may be removed or hidden from public view.
During an email exchange with Google and our own reviews, they also said the following:
But what if this isn’t the case? What if the review is legit and the person who’s left it hasn’t violated any of Google’s policies?
What can you do about it? From this help article and their response to us, it’s not very clear!
So, let’s take a look at some of the other reasons why Google Reviews might not be showing and what you can do about it.
Other Reasons Why Google Reviews Might Not BeShowing
Review Filtering Algorithms:
To maintain the integrity of its review system, Google employs sophisticated algorithms that filter out potentially fake or spam reviews. These algorithms analyse various factors such as IP addresses, review patterns, and user behaviour to determine the authenticity and legitimacy of reviews.
If Google’s algorithms suspect any review to be fraudulent, it may not be displayed publicly.
Of course, if you’ve been using a service to buy fake Google Reviews, even if these show up originally, they likely won’t last long!
Google reviews go through a moderation process before they are displayed.
This process ensures that reviews adhere to Google’s guidelines and policies and so consequently, there might be a delay between the submission of a review and its appearance on the business listing.
This delay can vary depending on factors such as review volume and the effectiveness of the moderation team.
As such, we’d always recommend waiting a few days before starting to panic if your latest review isn’t showing.
Issues with your Google Business profile
Another reason why Google Reviews might not be showing is that there may be issues with your Google Business profile.
Common issues include:
- Inaccurate listing information
- Duplicate business listing
- Inactive listings
With each of these, you can easily log in to your Google Business account and edit your profile with your updated and accurate business information, or simply remove any duplicate listings.
For a review to show up on Google, the person who has left the review needs to have a verified Google account.
If the reviewer’s account lacks verification or has incomplete information, their reviews may not be visible.
This measure helps in reducing spam and maintaining the credibility of the review system.
Reviews Include Links
If the Google review in question has a link included in it then it’s no surprise that it’s not showing. Google doesn’t allow reviews to have any outbound links and so if they do, they’ll simply be removed.
If you’ve had a review with a link in it, then you can always request that the person removes it, or make sure you mention it when asking for a review.
Google respects the privacy preferences of its users.
Some people might have adjusted their account settings to restrict the visibility of their reviews.
These privacy settings can limit the visibility of their reviews to a specific audience or even prevent them from appearing altogether.
Recent Changes or Updates:
Google regularly updates its algorithms, review policies, and interface. Sometimes, these updates can cause temporary glitches or disruptions in the display of reviews. While such occurrences are rare, they can lead to reviews not showing up for a short period until the issue is resolved.
How Can You Rectify Google Reviews Not Showing?
So, if you are a business owner concerned about your missing Google Reviews, and you feel that your review has a legitimate reason to be showing or shouldn’t have been removed, there is good news!
Here at SiteVisibility, we’ve been able to get Google Reviews that weren’t showing up to appear as well as get Google Reviews that were removed reinstated.
But how I hear you ask? Well, quite simple, you’ll need to contact Google Support. In this instance, we emailed Google at email@example.com
Yep, it was that simple.
As I previously mentioned, this has happened a few times with us, so here’s an example of one of the emails that we sent them:
Now, we did have to follow up a couple of times. Originally they sent us this response:
None of the issues that they had replied with applied to us, but, after a couple of emails back and forth, Google passed us onto their “specialist” team.
In a few days, our reviews were re-instated or appeared on our profile. Happy days!
As such, when going through the process of emailing Google about your reviews, we’d suggest that you collect all the evidence you can about your new reviews not being displayed or having been removed.
For example, in our instance, we asked our customers to take screenshots of the review that they had left, but that wasn’t showing up.
What Else Can You Do?
Contact Google is probably the easiest and most straightforward method, but there are a couple of other options.
If you’ve recently reinstated your Google Business Profile, you’ll also need to contact support and provide them with a case number and reinstatement details to request review transfers.
Alternatively, if that doesn’t work, and you’re not satisfied with Google’s help, you can post your issue on the Google Business Profile Community to try to get a sympathetic Google employee’s attention.
Finally, you can encourage customers to repost reviews. So, if you have customers or clients who had their reviews removed, you can politely ask them to repost their review and just ensure that they adhere to Google’s guidelines when reposting to avoid any potential removals.
While the absence of Google reviews can be perplexing, there are various reasons why they might not be showing up.
Factors such as review filtering algorithms, delayed processing, incomplete verification, privacy settings, policy violations, or recent updates can contribute to this happening.
But, by understanding these possibilities and taking proactive steps to encourage genuine reviews, you can avoid this happening, and if it does, you now have the solutions to get them back!
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