It was with pleasure and glee that I read an internet article from a legal advertising company with the title “Your Law Firm's Stars are GONE”.
The article states that “Google killed them (the stars) because they are self-serving. Now SEO salespeople will have to find a new trick to sell to attorneys.”
Google created the 5 stars rating/review to HELP consumers make an intelligent choice before buying anything or using the services of lawyers, doctors, electricians, plumbers for their services, etc. In theory this is a big help to all of consumers.
Some advertising companies have (until now) found a “work around” meaning they create their own fake reviews through some loopholes so it looks like the company or law firm or electrician has many, many wonderful reviews.
This abuse of the Google system has now been “discovered” by Google. It will be interesting to see what they will do to all the existing “fake” reviews. Will they still be there to deceive would be consumers, clients?
As stated by one lawyer advertising company, “(this practice of trickery of the public) amounted to a loophole that allowed websites to manipulate Google's users into noticing and presumably checking on the results more frequently than they otherwise would.” Lawlitics.com post by Dan Jaffee September 22, 2019.
I don't know if I can trust the reviews that I read now that this trickery has been discovered.
On my website my clients genuinely give me Google reviews. There is no trickery involved, no attempt to deceive the public. If a client wants to speak their heart about my firm's services, the review will be (as they call it) organic. No fake news here!
I happened to see a few of my competitor's website reviews. Some have 500 reviews. That is impossible. Just like the way they practice law, their reviews are self-serving and clearly are not genuine. I am so glad Google will now be able to “level the playing field” in their created area of consumer reviews.
Just think about it… if one fakes their own reviews what kind of businessman or lawyer are they? You decide that one!