Twitter tests new votes feature

Posted on July 27, 2021

Twitter is currently experimenting with an up and down vote feature, similar to the reactions on other social media platforms like (more…)

Posted by Jonathon Roberts

Latest WordPress offers nearly 300 new features and fixes

Posted on July 26, 2021

Last Tuesday, the long-awaited WordPress 5.8 update was released, which includes a wide range of additions and tweaks to help improve your website, and enables you to have more control over your WordPress website. (more…)

Posted by Jonathon Roberts

Keep redirects in place for at least a year, says Google

Posted on July 23, 2021

An update from Google has said that if a redirect has been in place on your website for a year, it will now pass permanent signals even if you (more…)

Posted by Jonathon Roberts

Google releases new way to advertise product deals

Posted on July 22, 2021

To help searchers find deals and discounts on products they’re looking for, search giant Google is offering online retailers a different way to list deals in search results for free.

According to the search engine, people are (more…)

Posted by Emily Jones

Research reveals importance of websites for SMEs

Posted on July 21, 2021

New research released by Yell shows the importance of having an online presence, along with the value of having a website that’s up to date, fast (more…)

Posted by Emily Jones

Could fake online reviews become illegal?

Posted on July 20, 2021

A new government proposal is seeking to come down harder on companies that attempt to deceive people online, and the part that has grabbed the headlines is the suggestion that writing or hosting fake online reviews could become an offence.

Online reviews are now big part of how we shop and make decisions. One study says that 91% of us read them, and that 84% of us trust them as much as a personal recommendation. That’s despite the fact that they can easily be manipulated in one of two ways.

The first of these ways is sabotage. It’s often the case that because many people rate products and services as five stars by default, we take the one- and two-star reviews more seriously, but how do we know they’re fair? When you read a review of a hotel being dirty, overpriced and full of rude staff, can you be sure it wasn’t written by a rival hotel from across the road? I recently read the reviews of a book on Amazon that had an average rating of three stars, which is quite poor by Amazon’s standards, but it turned out most of the poor reviews where written by people who had got into a political argument with the author on Twitter and had nothing to do with the book.

Perhaps a more common misuse of review sites, however, is for companies to churn out positive reviews of their own products and services under the illusion of being customers. I’m almost certain I came across a case of this recently when I had a poor experience with an item and seemed to be one of many going by Trustpilot reviews. However, the company was still maintaining an average of over four stars. This was because although the company was getting detailed scathing reviews almost daily, it was also benefiting from five or six five-star reviews every day. These were all a similar format of being just a couple of sentences long, unspecific in detail, written in fairly poor English and, most unusually for an online service, all praised an individual staff member.

It certainly seemed suspicious, but I can’t prove this was an example of fake reviews, which is where this proposal may face some difficulty. The fact that it mentions both writing and hosting fake reviews could also be problematic, as a company could be hosting fake reviews unwittingly.

Other parts of the proposal seek to give the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority more powers to tackle unethical online business practice, and it includes misleading subscriptions that are difficult to cancel, and safeguarding people’s money in pre-payment schemes should the company go bust, as happened with the Christmas hamper company Farepak in 2006.

Even the best companies get the occasional negative review, and we’ve written before about what you can do about them, but businesses operating online should make every effort to be transparent and trustworthy. With more and more people shopping on the web, customers should be as confident doing this as they would be in stores. For help in establishing authenticity and trust online, without sneaky tactics like fake reviews, speak to us at Engage Web.

Posted by John Murray

Google announces partnership with GoDaddy

Posted on July 19, 2021

Last week, search giant Google announced it was partnering with GoDaddy to aid merchants in getting their products seen by (more…)

Posted by Emily Jones

Fleeting presence: Twitter ditches its Stories equivalent after nine months

Posted on July 16, 2021

Sixteen months ago, we wrote about the introduction of Twitter’s Fleets, a Snapchat-style feature that allows users to share thoughts and moments that disappear after 24 hours, similar to (more…)

Posted by John Murray
Older Posts »
Call Now Button

Who Engage Web has helped:

Ice Lolly Thomas Cook GS1 UK The Underfloor Heating Store Minuteman Press MWB Business Exchange BUNZL Web Media 360 D2 Architects Beacon Financial Training Steely Products West Cheshire Athletic Club Burlydam Garden Centre Asentiv BodyHQ Clever Vine Endeavour Mortgages Pro Networks Comm-Tech Wickers World Ascot Mortgages Top Teks
TEL: 0345 621 4321