Ewan Kennedy

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I just saw a local SEO consultant, on Google Maps, who has used schema to create a fake review summary on his website which reports 128 reviews, with five-star average review rating. I can't find a single review anywhere online, including on his own website). I think he only set up business a few months ago. Of course, these appear very nicely with yellow stars in the SERPs.

Can anyone suggest an approach?
 

Ewan Kennedy

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Thanks Rich. I'll give it a whirl.

There is another case where an SEO agency is using markup on their website for their Google reviews which is against Google's guidelines. Do you think the same form should be used for that issue?
 

JoyHawkins

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Ewan,

I have never seen Google penalize a site in any way for marking up third party reviews. If it is against their guidelines, it's not something they currently enforce.
 

Ewan Kennedy

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Joy, I just thought I'd clarify that it is against Google's guidelines to mark up any review which is taken from another site i.e. not generated directly on the website of the business in question. The guidelines also state that manual action may be taken against businesses who don't adhere to the guidelines.
Google gives thumbs-up on placing your local reviews from Yelp, Google Maps and others on your own website - Search Engine Land
Google updates local reviews schema guidelines - Search Engine Land
Review snippet | Search | Google Developers
 

Ewan Kennedy

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See under Guidelines ... "Sites must collect ratings information directly from users and not from other sites."
 

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