Shelly

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One of my client's largest competitors (Adam French, L.Ac) has review spam and I am not sure how to notify Google. While he only has 11 reviews, and a few are legit, when you start looking into each of his individual reviewers, it is clear that many that have reviewed his business have also reviewed a variety of the same other businesses across the country, using very similar language on each.

For example one of his reviewers also left a review on this business:
Here you see a lot of the same reviewers as on the listing in question, and you see our competitor that also left a review here.

There are other business owners appearing to do reciprocal reviews as well. I know in this field there are a lot of small business forums where they all talk to one another and my guess is they are reviewing each other's businesses to help them in Google.

Here are a few of the individual reviewers Google profiles. You will see a lot of duplicates.
Contributions by Harry Lardner

Is there a way Google can be notified to have these reviews removed? It is not straight forward spam that could be caught simply by flagging them.
 
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The hardest part is proving this. While you and I might be able to identify that they are fake reviews, there really is no proof that those people didn't take trips around the country and visit those businesses.
 
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I’m hoping someone could help with this. I just found a few instances of review spam that is so blatantly obvious it’s laughable. But the question is how to prove that to google?
 

keyserholiday

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You can create a Google sheet with the links to the fake reviews and then visit the GMB forum for help. I can walk you through the process.
 
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I made a thread at the GMB forum a couple days ago.

Do I make a Google sheet with a link to each review? Or the reviewer‘s profile that shows that each reviewer has reviewed all of the businesses in the fake review ring?
 

keyserholiday

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Please share the link to the thread. I will advise what is needed.
 

keyserholiday

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I replied to that thread and advised you to map out all the fake listings and report them via the redressal form. It's a moot point to report the reviews when it's easier to get the fake listings removed.
 
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As I mentioned in that thread, I don’t know that those other listings are fake. The one that I know is fake I already reported via the redressal form. But now I would like to report the fake reviews, which is not done through the redressal form. That is what I’m asking for help on both here and over there.

Also, I asked for more information on reporting all of the listings as fake. I assume the spreadsheet that I posted is not enough information to prove if they are fake.
 

keyserholiday

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I figured since I told you to report all of the listings that it was good enough. The listings are violating the naming TOS. I am sure that there are other violations as well. Therefore, reporting all of the listings would be your best bet instead of targeting the reviews.
 
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I figured since I told you to report all of the listings that it was good enough. The listings are violating the naming TOS. I am sure that there are other violations as well. Therefore, reporting all of the listings would be your best bet instead of targeting the reviews.
I have reported a lot of listings which had clear spam names and they weren't taken down.

I will be happy to report these for violating the naming TOS, but I just don't want to sit around for weeks waiting for possibly nothing to happen. Is there anything else I can report them for in the redressal form as well? Something that will help make Google do something?

On a slightly different note, since it is very clearly a fake review ring, I am asking what can be done about that directly? There must be some type of recourse when a business is so blatantly leaving fake reviews. That is what the OP of this thread is asking as well.
 

JoyHawkins

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@DontBiteUrNails I would agree with Jason here that you will actually get farther reporting the fake listings associated with the fake reviews. In my experience, fake review networks take months for Google to remove after reporting there whereas fake listings take weeks.
 
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@DontBiteUrNails I would agree with Jason here that you will actually get farther reporting the fake listings associated with the fake reviews. In my experience, fake review networks take months for Google to remove after reporting there whereas fake listings take weeks.
I am going to do that today. Before I do, is there anything else that I can include in the redressal report other than the naming TOS violation?

Here is what I have now, it just doesn't seem like enough evidence to convince Google: VM Power

The review spam ring seems like it would be good evidence, but that doesn't apply in the redressal report AFAIK.
 

keyserholiday

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This is an obvious spam network with several locations, keyword-stuffing and the same reviewers review several locations. Just reporting them via the redressal form for the name spam is enough to get them all taken down. Google more than likely will issue an account level suspension, which will ban this user from getting reinstated. I don't see how these listing would even attempt to apply for reinstatement. This looks like a churn and burn network.

Please just report them via the redressal form and wait for Google to review them. I am hearing of a backlog in the redressal cases, so please prepare yourself to wait several weeks.
 
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This is an obvious spam network with several locations, keyword-stuffing and the same reviewers review several locations. Just reporting them via the redressal form for the name spam is enough to get them all taken down. Google more than likely will issue an account level suspension, which will ban this user from getting reinstated. I don't see how these listing would even attempt to apply for reinstatement. This looks like a churn and burn network.

Please just report them via the redressal form and wait for Google to review them. I am hearing of a backlog in the redressal cases, so please prepare yourself to wait several weeks.
Awesome, thanks. I will do exactly this.

One more question, why do you use the URL shortener in your spreadsheet? I have seen it said to do that, but I am curious why. Is it a requirement by Google or just good habit or something?

Thanks again.
 

keyserholiday

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That is the share link to the actual review I am not reporting. It's not for the listing. If it's a star only rating, then I have to grab the places link.
 

Shelly

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@keyserholiday Please take a look at my reformated Google sheet and let me know if additional changes are needed. This makes a lot more sense in this format.
 

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