Review Site Series: Deceptive Advertising on Review Sites

Advertising

As we all know, advertising is what makes the web go ’round. But when can advertising become prohibitive?

Many review sites offer advertising packages to the businesses that have listings on their site. These advertising packages may include anything from top banner ads, side banner ads, and sometimes ads smack-dab in the middle of the page.

Many times, when you are searching for a business, you may find a highlighted business name just above the search results you are looking for. This may lead you to believe that this highlighted search result is the business you were looking for all along. I know that I have personally made that mistake a few times before.

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At ReviewInc, we feel that placing an ad in the center of the business listing is a little distracting and misleading. When ads are placed on the top or sides, it is typically understood that they are advertisements. However, when they are included in search results or in the center of a business listing, it may lead the consumer to believe that the business associated with the ad is the one they were looking for initially. Smart if you think about it, but also somewhat deceptive.

So what are your thoughts on ad placement within a business listing on a review site? Do you think that it is bothersome or does it not really matter to you? Do you think that strategic ad placement is misleading or beneficial to businesses? Let us know in the comments below!

Review Site Series: Alternate Logins

Many review sites offer certain features to business owners and reviewers alike. At ReviewInc, one of our favorites is alternate logins. Alternate logins allow reviewers and business owners to log in to the review site using credentials from a different website such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Yahoo!.

Since many people already have accounts with these popular websites, it makes it very convenient for them to quickly log in and access the full functionality of the review site without having to create an additional account on that review site. Or at the very least, it makes account creation for that website a little more simplified.

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Out of 170 review sites that we monitor, 89 support Facebook logins, 30 support Google logins, 16 support Yahoo! logins, 15 support Twitter logins, 8 support Windows logins and 6 support LinkedIn logins.

We feel this is a very important feature because people are more inclined to leave reviews on a review site when it is hassle-free. Any added steps could deter them from leaving a review altogether.

What are your thoughts? Do you think that alternate logins are a great feature? Let us know in the comments below!

Review Site Series: Ability of a Business Owner to Respond to a Review

Welcome to our second blog post in our Review Site Series! For this post, we wanted to focus on the ability of a business owner to respond to a review.

Many review sites allow business owners to respond to an online review, but many do not. What do you think about this? Do you think business owners should have to ability to candidly tackle their naysayers and conversely, publicly thank their supporters?

We at ReviewInc feel that it’s very important for a business to have the opportunity to respond to a review, be it negative or positive. More often than not, it is impossible for a business owner to gather personal contact information from just looking at a reviewer’s profile (Even worse so if the reviewer posted anonymously; nightmare!), so we feel it’s imperative for a business owner to be able to respond right there within their business listing page.

And, if a business owner is not able to respond on their business page directly, they should at least be able to have the option to gather contact information or message the reviewer privately, regardless of if the reviewer’s profile provides an alias or not.

What are your thoughts? Feel free to share in the comments below!

Review Site Series: Anonymous Posting

Welcome to our Review Site Series! Each week, we will be highlighting a feature on a review site and our take on it. Is it beneficial? Does it help or hurt a business or a reviewer’s capability of leaving a review?

39398365_sThis week, we’ve decided to focus on anonymous posting. When reviewers leave a review, we at ReviewInc feel that a name should accompany a review. We feel that anonymous posting is very damaging to a small business, without holding the reviewer accountable for their words. While yes, this is perhaps the most appealing aspect of posting anonymously. However, we feel that if someone felt strongly enough about their experience with a business, they should be able to own it.

On the flip side of that, we understand that leaving an anonymous review keeps the reviewer safe from retaliation from a business owner. However, if they were concerned about this in the first place, they could simply use an alias or nickname when leaving a review as opposed to using no name at all.

What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments below!

Yelp Now Allows Users to Leave a Review on Mobile App

Yelp has now added the capability for users to leave reviews for their favorite local businesses on the mobile app. (Available now for Apple iOS and coming soon to Android).

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Before, users were able to create reviews on their mobile device, but had to log in to Yelp on a computer in order to post the review. But not anymore!

This makes it even more important now than ever for businesses to stay on top of their game since it makes the posting of reviews more instantaneous.

Additionally, photos taken by a user at a business will now be automatically attached to their review. The Tip feature is still enabled, but leaving a review will allow a user to go into more detail about their experience.

What does this mean for ReviewInc? It means that your reviewers who are reviewing you on mobile devices now have the capability of reviewing you on Yelp right from their smartphone!