It has been1120 days 11 hours 29 minutes 31 seconds, since Google last publicly commented on their losing of business reviews.
Since that time, reports of Google losing business reviews continue to come in. From both personal experience and reports that flow into the forums, it is clear the Google has yet to solve the lost review problems. It is clearly not one problem but several.
For SMB’s, the only thing worse than Google not fighting review spam, is losing good reviews. Not only do SMBs deserve to have these reviews found, they deserve communication while Google is hunting for them.
Please consider leaving a comment as your input will help me (& everyone else) better understand and learn about local.
Last Public Comment About Reviews From Google
by Mike Blumenthal
Not doing reviews at Google is cutting off your nose to spite your face. I agree it is buggy, I agree that there is a good chance that they will be lost.
But there is an equally good chance that a 3rd party review will be lost from Google or even a better chance that it will be pulled down because the 3rd party site is mad at Google.
That being said, it makes sense to get your reviews from a diversity of sites. In my mind that includes Google but is not exclusive to them. To me, Google is but one of 4 or 5 sites that you encourage your customers to use.
That way no matter which way the wind blows or the bugs fly, you will always have some reviews showing in your Places Page.
Comment by Mike (2503 comments) — January 31, 2011 @ 9:34 pm
How does a multi billion dollar company with hundreds of PHD’s and thousands of programmers “lose” reviews – for months?
I understand they deal with a system on a scale most of can’t even imagine, but that’s no excuse.
Let everyone sit around on bean bags all day and spend 20% of their time dreaming about the next spacecraft to go to Mars and you get undisciplined programming and testing.
Since losing all my google reviews, (70 of them) I tell all my customer’s to review me @yelp.com I’ve personaly seen how big Yelp is becoming. I get ton’s of business from there and actually rank #2 out of 902 in my category.
I just talked to a Google Tags rep on behalf of a local business I help out with SEM. Their Tag had disappeared after a month and I called to find out why. It’s my first experience with a real Google person. In the process of sorting through the problem the rep tried to sell me on the Boost program. He had only a vague knowledge of how the system works, and had no knowledge of how it would dovetail with a well optimized Adwords campaign. He insinuated that Boost would help with the Maps “A through J” listing, and only backed off slightly when it became clear I knew what I was talking about. He also pushed Google reviews, and had no knowledge of all the issues related to reviews bugs. While he was nice enough, his general knowledge of the local search landscape, even as it relates to Google products, was lacking to say the least.
If this is an example of the much awaited “human interface” to Google, then the company is clearly heading in the wrong direction. A small business person with limited knowledge is going to end up getting mediocre or slightly misleading advice from an actual Google representative. They have clearly decided to invest in a sales staff to push their buggy products before investing in a support staff that understands and can fix the products they push. I like the company and I like the local emphasis, but they’re acting like a local search dictatorship and eventually I think it will backfire.
Spot on Mike, 90 hard won reviews lost October / November time, never to resurface…. frustrating, maddening, unfair and potentially business killing if competitors weren’t so apathetic. I was annoyed, frustrated and wanted to turn my back on Google, but ultimately you’ve just got to build again. Just hoping that if I get to 90 again Google’s review exterminator doesn’t kick in. How lovely it would be to find those lost reviews!
Man I feel for ya Adrian. 70 lost here. I’m rebuilding now directing all my reviews over to yelp.com. I’ve gotten as much business from there, and I know my reviews won’t vanish. Hopefully our lost google reviews will appear one day.
Now Google are cutting multiple words or first sentences from review section places. Whats next?
Comment by Valentina R (5 comments) — February 27, 2011 @ 3:23 pm
@Valentina R – How about having about a hundred 1-star “Google User” reviews suddenly show up in your Google Places page (in just 2 days) and not be able to quickly get them removed??? That’s where we’re at right now…
Is there also an issue with Yahoo Local reviews? A client just contacted me saying there was a review on her Yahoo Local listing that is no longer there and that other patrons of her business submitted reviews to Yahoo Local and they were never included. Any ideas? Thanks!