One of the greatest conveniences of modern technology is the ability to make purchases online and have whatever you need delivered right to your home without you having to leave the couch. However, when you make purchases like this, you often have to extend a certain amount of trust to the seller since you can’t see the product you’re getting with your own two eyes. To help make this trust easier to come by, many people read reviews or comments about the product before purchasing it. Sadly, online reviews are often and easily faked, either by the company itself or by other interested parties. And while this usually isn’t technically illegal, it isn’t necessarily ethical either. So to help keep you from falling for these false pieces of information, here are three tips for spotting a fake review online.
Take Caution With Extremes
As you’re reading a review online, there are a couple of things that you want to watch out for as tell-tale signs that the review isn’t legitimate. According to NBCNews.com, ones of the biggest red flags for an online review or comment is using extreme language. This means that if someone says something is “the best” or “the greatest” of whatever is it, it’s usually because that person has been paid to say that. Especially if these claims feel like they’re really trying to sell you on whatever the product is and are just going above and beyond what a normal person would naturally say, it’s generally safe to assume that the review isn’t all that trustworthy.
Verbs, Verbs Everywhere
Another good indicator that an online review may be faked, according to Jessica Stillman, a contributor to Inc.com, is the use of a lot of verbs within the content of the review. While anyone reviewing a product will usually use some type of verbs to describe their use of the product, faked reviews will rely more heavily on this type of grammar as a substitute for having anything genuine to say. So if you see a review that is heavier on the verbs than on nouns, or if you see a review that gives very general or overly explained information, you may be looking at a faked review.
Find The Right Tools To Help
If you’ve found a review that seems suspect to you, there are tools out there that can help you more confidently determine if the review is likely genuine. According to Rick Broida, a contributor to CNET.com, tools like Fakespot and MetaReview can help you draw more informed conclusions about certain aspects of a review and the person giving the review. While they can’t tell you with 100 percent certainty that a review is faked, they can give you more information to help you draw a conclusion about whether to believe what’s been written or not.
If you’ve run across some questionable online reviews in the past, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you spot the fakers out there.