Removing a review from Google is possible in some cases and in other situations it becomes quite difficult to do this. It is therefore mainly dependent on the situation. Do you want to delete a Google review that you have posted yourself or do you want to delete a review posted by someone else about you? Here you can read everything about the removal of Google reviews, the rules of Google and your options as a recipient of a negative review in 2020.
Remove your own review from Google
Accidentally given a bad review? You may have written a review on Google yourself that you will regret afterwards. It is then possible to remove this review. To do this, follow the following steps:
- Go through your browser to Google Maps. (google.com/maps)
- Click on the top left on the three horizontal lines.
- Click on the option My Contributions.
- A menu appears, click Reviews.
- Choose the review that matters and click Review Review.
The review has now been permanently removed from Google. It is possible to write a new Google review whenever you want.
What if you want to delete a received Google review?
Companies often receive customer reviews (reviews) via Google. The companies themselves have no influence on this. This also makes it difficult when an inappropriate or very negative review is posted. You can then do two things. In the first place you can try to ensure that Google removes the review. If this does not work, you can turn to a judge to get an order. Both options unfortunately offer no guarantee of success.
Need good reviews? Read this tips for more and better reviews.
Request Google to delete a review
Do you see a review that you find wrong? Then you can request Google to remove this review. You do this by following the following steps:
- Go to Google My Business and log in.
- Do you have multiple entries from companies? Then you can indicate the correct location on the map to continue at that company.
- Go to the option in the menu Reviews.
- Find the concerning review that you want removed.
- Click on the three vertical stripes at the review to open the menu.
- click on Mark as Inappropriate.
With this you send a request to Google to remove the review. This means that Google will check whether the review is actually inappropriate and whether or not it meets the requirements that Google sets for reviews. If they also note this, the review will be deleted. In most cases, Google will decide that the review may remain. A negative review is not inappropriate in most cases. Google believes that everyone should be able to give an honest opinion, regardless of whether this is a positive or negative opinion.
Report fake reviews to the RCC
As a consumer, do you see a Google review that must be fake? For example too enthusiastic, or too destructive? Then you can also submit a complaint about this to the Advertising Code Committee (RCC). Because Google reviews are important sources for consumers, the RCC will investigate the complaint and make a decision.
Contacting Google about Google Reviews is not possible
Unfortunately it is not possible to contact Google directly via telephone or chat. This feature initially existed (via Support in your Google My Business dashboard), but that now only refers to Help pages. Support is still given by volunteers (be sweet) in English via this forum.
….And Google legal request is not working
The next step that seems to be offered by Google is to submit an official legal request. But the wizard simply refers you back to reporting the review. For completeness:
- Go to Legal Removal Request for explanation. You can find the link to this here Removing content from Google.
- Choose Google my Business for reviews
- You will receive a notification that your complaint is shared with Lumendabase, where all requests for removal of online content by Google are shared with the public.
- Choose: I would like to report in a proper review on a business listing and you get the message:
Please see our review policies to learn more about the circumstances under which Google may remove a review.
If you feel that a review has violated Google's review content policies, you can report it by opening the review and clicking on the “Flag as inappropriate” link, which looks like a small flag and is typically displayed when your cursor is hovering over the review . This process will submit your concern to our review policy team, which will ensure the quickest and most efficient processing of your report. While you may not receive any further response from them, know that they are investigating the issues you raised and will take action as appropriate.
Extra option for Google advertisers
The Google Ads help desk can also support Google My Business in 2020:
- Log in to Google Ads (ads.google.com)
- Click on it question mark top right and go to Worldwide telephone support.
- In the help item it becomes local telephone number from the Google Ads Helpdesk.
What if Google does not want to delete the review?
You cannot force Google to remove a review. The only option you still have is going to court. Here you can submit to the court that Google refuses to remove a defamatory review. The judge will assess the review. If the court decides that the review is indeed inappropriate and defamatory, it can order Google to remove the review.
What does Google remove?
- Spam: Google uses automatic spam detection to remove spam messages. Think of promotional or commercial content, copy / paste or write multiple reviews via multiple accounts for one company.
- Ads: links to other websites, e-mail addresses or telephone numbers.
- Non-relevant reviews: reviews are not about politics, religion or social commentary. Personal resentment or tirades are also not part of this, just like personal attacks.
- Improper: defamatory, offensive or obscene language. So cursed for example.
- Conflict of interest: an unfair assessment of an employee or owner. Do not offer money, services or products for an assessment.
- Illegal content: copyrighted content, links or references to illegal content.
- Sex: is always removed, where necessary a report is made and the relevant Google account is closed.
- Personal information: Think BSN number, credit card number, driver's license information etc.
- Hate: incitement to hatred based on gender, belief, background or origin.
New is that Google now also reports that simulation of identity is forbidden in Google reviews:
Simulation of identity
“We do not allow people to use Google Maps to mislead others. This applies to both misleading content and an incorrect representation of things. Do not attribute your content to other persons, organizations or companies if you are not authorized to represent it. Google reserves the right to remove content, suspend accounts or take other legal action against contributors who falsely claim to represent Google or to be employed by Google. "
As a recipient of a bad review, this gives you an extra option. If you can prove that the reviewer is posing like another, you have good reason to have the Google review removed. For example: customer name is unknown in the customer database or the profile photo is fake.
Legal case against Google for removal of reviews from Google Maps case
The court of Amsterdam made an encouraging decision in a daycare center against Google to remove reviews from Google Maps and to provide the name and address data of the reviewers. The case was awarded in the summary proceedings because it was evidently unlawful reviews. What is striking is how unwilling Google in this case is to think along with the entrepreneur. Essential points from the ruling:
- Removal very difficult. "To this end [claimant] claims that she is the victim of a smear campaign through the Google review tool. It is a mystery to [plaintiff] who posted the reviews. However, removing a Google review appears to be considerably less easy than posting it. "
- Google refuses to delete. "Those rejections show that Google consistently refuses to remove the defamatory reviews (and provide the name and address data) unless it is summoned."
- Google aims for justice. “Google defends the right of its customers to freedom of expression, even when the reviews are critical of third parties or have appeared anonymously or under a pseudonym. Ultimately, it is not Google but the judge who determines the boundary between permissible criticism and unacceptable reputation violation. ”
- Google only looks after the content. “It was only after the hearing in these summary proceedings that Google apparently discovered that there were indications to believe that this was the case spam,…”
- Google sets the bar very high for others. "This shows that the bar that Google applies in the context of its notice and takedown policy is very high, certainly for a small company like [plaintiff]"
- Google removes afterwards. “... Google concluded after the hearing on January 26, 2016 that the reviews of" Bart Vranken "," Helen Dijkmeijer "and" Hilde Claas "should be assessed as spam. Google has now removed these three reviews. ”
- The spammers are unmasked. The preliminary relief judge ... "orders Google to provide information to the attorney of [plaintiff] within fourteen days of serving this person with regard to the person or persons who have the four reviews as described in the subpoena and in the deed change requirement placed. "
Respond to the Google Review
Responding to the Google review gives a number of extra options, especially when you do this in a friendly way. Google review tips are:
- Be friendly and do not become personal. Arguing does not help anyone, even if you are right. Provide useful, readable and friendly responses. After all, they must also comply with Google's policy.
- Short and powerful. No one helps too extensively.
- Thank you for the review. You do not have to respond to every review, but readers of reviews are happy to see that there is a review. Especially when you provide extra or relevant information.
- Verify the customer relationship. Do you only work on the basis of a personal customer relationship and do you see a completely strange name as the sender? Name that. Ask for additional information, offer to coordinate by telephone. A false identity is a good reason to remove the Google review.
- Verify the review. If a reviewer does not click on the five stars, it automatically becomes one star. While the text is also positive. Approach this person friendly and explain how that person can adjust his or her review (for example, share this page).
Read on about it obtain positive reviews.
Disabling Google reviews is not possible
As confirmed in the aforementioned judgment, it is not possible to remove the so-called review function for your Google My Business. Because:For the time being, Google has made it plausible that this is technically not possible, as is the removal of the entire business listing of [plaintiff] from Google's internet pages. Above all, the granting of such a claim would be too great a violation of freedom of expression and there would be no separate interest in the removal of this review function alone, while opinions could and could be given on a particular company in many other places on the internet. ”
Delete your Google My Business listing
Unfortunately, once online is always online. only when you can prove that the company never existed can you persuade Google to remove a GMB listing. You can read our explanation about this here Delete Google My Business.
The best way to deal with bad Google reviews? Provide extra positive reviews:
Review marketing and SEO opportunities
Get started seriously with review marketing? Read here how important reviews are, what you do exactly, 8 practical tips for dealing with negative reviews and advice from Koninklijke Horeca Nederland on review blackmail.
In addition, reviews also offer SEO opportunities! Colleague blogger Gerben G. van Dijk explains it here: Reviews as a local SEO strategy.