The Mystery of the Disappearing Reviews

We’ve heard from a number of doctors this past month who’ve noticed their positive reviews vanish from popular review sites.  In most of the cases, this occurred after the doctor politely declined to advertise with these reviews sites.  Which leads one to ask whether the reviews on these sites are truly reliable.

As a rule, most review sites always claim their reviews are organic, user-generated content.  Still, there have been plenty of cases where fictitious patients, laid-off hygienists, and even competing dentists have left false negative reviews for doctors.  In order to combat these unscrupulous actions, some review sites began employing their own 'algorithms' to weigh reviews from more established users.

Here’s where it gets a bit mysterious.  Doctors are now noticing that when they decline to advertise with these sites, their positive reviews are disappearing from their profile page.  It’s not that these reviews have entirely disappeared, as they’re still posted under the reviewer’s account.  The new ‘algorithm’ is simply blocking these positive reviews from appearing on the doctor’s profile page.

An actual doctor's reviews before declining to advertise with a review site:

The same doctor's reviews after declining to advertise with a review site:

What makes this even more suspect is that positive reviews posted by established users are being supplanted by negative reviews from brand new users with few previously submitted reviews – entirely contradicting what these review sites claimed their ‘algorithms’ were setup up to accomplish in the first place.

Naturally, these practices are a bit unsettling; and they don’t stop there.  For more info, check out the issues that some doctors & business owners have been dealing with in this post & this additional article.

If a similar thing has happened to you, please let us know by emailing us.

About the Author

Mike is a marketing guru and online reputation specialist. He as worked witha variety of companies improving their marketing strategies, specifically working with...

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