It seems like there is another set of reviews going missing or being removed by Google in the Google Maps and local listings. Joy Hawkins noticed an increase in complaints from businesses over the past week but Mike Blumenthal thinks it is more intentional over the last few months.
Just as a reminder, we notice this starting back in March 2022 again, where reviews were dropping out of the Google local listings. It has happened in 2019 and 2021 as well.
Mike said he has seen an uptick in complaints in the forums from businesses about reviews being removed or going missing – he shared this chart – because charts make it easier to understand. He said he noticed that the uptick actually started in February with these complaints.
Joy said on Twitter “I’m hearing tons of reports of businesses losing reviews in the last week that were published before but then got removed recently.” There are a number of complaints in the Local Search Forums recently, here they are:
In short my client tells me 10+ have gone missing Since February 2022. After a while he started having his clients send screenshots because they would tell them they left reviews but they wouldn’t show. I have proof of 3 but client is insisting it’s many many more.
It seems they tend to be filtering “new” reviewers and “1 and done” reviewers. Similar to Yelp.
Perhaps if these people continue to leave reviews elsewhere and build up their profile, they may get unfiltered?
I know when I see “1 review” on a profile, I question it as legit, so perhaps that is part of Google’s filter?
It’s not 100%, but a high percentage.
Joy added in the forums:
Not only has the filter got stricter, but they also have been doing waves of takedowns lately so I’m hearing tons of reports of businesses losing reviews in the last week that were published before but then got removed recently.
One thing to try is instead of sending customers a link to review you with, tell them to search for you on Google and leave a review. That *might* help – it’s worth testing.
I’ll go escalate your thread on the Google forum now.
Are you noticing fewer reviews or missing reviews for you local listings in Google?
Forum discussion at Local Search Forums.