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Fake reviews: These 5 tips will help you identify fake reviews

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Online shopping has a big problem: One personal advice is hardly possible. Many customers therefore trust reviews on Amazon & Co. But beware: Not all of these customer reviews are serious. Together with our partner Spigen we explain how you recognize fakes and which criteria indicate trustworthy customer reviews.

Whether new headphones, smartphones or even refrigerators: you can conveniently order almost all products online. It is difficult to keep an overview of the gigantic range. According to an investigation by the ReviewMeta platform, 2017 at least 20 percent of all reviews in the mail order top dog Amazon Fakes – every fifth So customer rating is bought. Fortunately, these fakes can be seen through with a little effort. You should pay attention to the following criteria before your next online purchase:

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1. Verified purchases

Be sure to pay attention to reviews marked as “verified purchases”. This does not guarantee an independent rating – but the rate of fake reviews is particularly high for reviews without a verified purchase of the product.

2. Language of the reviews

Nobody expects linguistic brilliance from a customer rating. More importantly, the reviews are authentic. Therefore, pay attention to superlatives and terms that could come directly from the next advertisement. In addition, recurring formulations or phrases are a clear alarm signal for purchased reviews. By the way: Even a negative rating can be potentially fake.

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3. Name and profile of the reviewer

A quick look at the profile of the evaluating accounts exposes the black sheep often very quickly. For example, in the rating of a daughter satisfied with the product – according to the profile, the rating comes from 22 – year-old students? In many cases, real names are also a sign of real customers. Strange pseudonyms or a striking number of generic names from combinations with the most common surnames rather not.

4. More customer reviews

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If you are already looking at the profile of the alleged buyer, you should also take a look at its other reviews. Does he only evaluate products from the same manufacturer? Has he published only a handful of reviews and they are all overwhelmingly positive? Or does he rate products that simply don't really fit together?

5. Time of review

Products like the recently released iPhone SE 2 are often out A few reviews were available for a short time – and Apple is generally not suspected of working with fake reviews. For products that are less eagerly awaited, it is unlikely that there will be countless enthusiastic comments on the day of the release. You should also be careful when evaluating new devices that are said to be based on long-term experience.

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Basically, of course, you also rely on tried and tested manufacturers when buying online can and should. The business with fake reviews has been since a judgment of the regional court in Munich in mid-November 2019 namely not only not to be compatible with the terms and conditions of most mail order companies – but strictly speaking even illegal. Large and well-known manufacturers would be particularly at risk of fake reviews due to their significantly higher sales figures. These large manufacturers are therefore even less interested in taking this risk.

Recognize real customer reviews – an example

Spigen is one such example. The company, based in the USA and South Korea, is an expert in the field of protective products for smartphones. Protective covers, screen protectors or bags from Spigen have been among the top sellers in their category for years. This example is a good illustration of how a company's standing can also increase the trustworthiness of customer reviews. One of the manufacturer's best-selling products is this protective cover for the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 .

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A look at the reviews on Amazon shows: About 18. 000 Customers have already rated the product – and at 96 percent of which are verified purchases. The first point of our checklist is therefore fulfilled. Let us now consider the language of the reviews. If the same wording or technical terms appear here that ordinary customers do not use, the reviews are most likely bought. In our example, customers include very different criteria in their reviews in their reviews – and use everyday language.

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For step three we take a look at randomly selected reviewers. Many of them come with real names or even profile pictures – a good sign. And that an electrical engineer is interested in a cable cutter in addition to the protective cover for his iPhone makes sense. The other reviews of our sample customers relate to products of everyday use. From the trash can to the hiking backpack to the microfiber towel: Here the overall picture in combination with the content of the respective reviews is simply coherent.

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In the end, only the view of the time of the reviews is missing. Since the product has been on the market for a good two years, long-term experience is generally not a problem. In addition, new reviews are added almost daily and without a recognizable pattern. A wave of valuation, which would most likely result from corresponding manipulations, would have been noticed here immediately.

So the reviews in this exemplary case passed all checks. At least the majority of the reviews should withstand verification – and Spigen are serious about their promise of unadorned reviews.

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Bestselling protective case: Also suitable for the new iPhone SE 2

By the way: Apple has finally released the long-awaited iPhone SE 2 . Do you already own the new budget iPhone and are looking for a suitable protective cover ? Our recently reviewed example, which seems to promise good quality thanks to extensive reviews, also fits the iPhone SE 2. The case is available, for example, from Amazon in black, red, mint, crystal clear or rose crystal. Since even Amazon recommends the case for the iPhone 8 in its “Amazon's Choice” program (recognizable by the small label under the product name), you can't go wrong with a purchase.

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