These days, review websites can be filled with a bunch of fake reviews.
And one of the major issues is that most individuals are becoming aware of these problems and are beginning to be more conscious when purchasing.
Over 67% of US customers (mostly from California) have stated that fake online reviews are a growing societal problem.
This can have a pretty huge impact on the overall business economy, specifically for eCommerce stores.
That’s why the CRFA (Consumer Reviews Fairness Act) has decided to launch the new California Bill and prohibit the usage of fake reviews.
Not only will this protect people who want to share their honest feedback, but it will also prevent businesses from manipulating their shoppers.
In today's post, we will explain the new California Bill and how you can comply with it.
So let’s get this started!
What Type of Reviews Does The California Bill Protect?
The new California Bill protects all honest consumer reviews, including text, videos, and picture reviews.
It even applies to social media posts as well.
What Is a Fake Review From The View Of The California Bill?
The FTC defines fake online reviews as the following:
“ Positive, neutral, or negative feedback that isn’t honest or impartial and doesn't reflect the actual experience of the customers. The sites on which these reviews appear can face a lawsuit.”
Where Do Fake Reviews Come From?
You might start questioning - "where do these fake reviews come from?"
Well, these are some of the most common sources:
- Websites that sell positive and negative reviews to other merchants;
- Individuals who write their own reviews in order to attract more shoppers;
- Family members or employees that write positive reviews to companies they are associated with;
- Consumers who post negative feedback just to get their money back.
What Can Companies Do To Protect Themselves From Fake Content?
Want to protect yourself from fake reviews?
Don’t worry; here’s how you can do this!
- Make sure that you have a review management app that gathers all of the reviews in one place;
- Go through all of the submitted reviews and carefully evaluate them;
- Ensure that the review has all the necessary information (customer email, name, or number);
- If you’re suspicious that someone hasn’t interacted with your business, remove the review or get in touch with them.
- But just remember, you can only remove the feedback if it’s false, misleading, or unrelated to the company.
Fera Product Reviews is a popular review management app that complies with all California rules.
It has various features and an easy interface - so everyone can start using it.
Beautiful, simple reviews for your siteEasily collect, show & grow customer reviews, photos & videos for your business.
What’s The Penalty For Violating California Bill?
The FTC, along with other groups and organizations, is working really hard to stop the spread of fake reviews.
Getting caught can result in high legal costs, hefty fines, and bad publicity for your brand.
The fine will massively vary depending on the severity of the case and your official business income.
Here are two businesses that violated the California Bill:
- A widely popular Amazon seller, Cure Encapsulations, has paid for fake reviews for its weight loss supplements. The final judgment concluded that the seller was guilty and had to pay over $12.8 million in fines.
- A functional tasking platform has imported over 17,000 fake reviews that were constructed to appear authentic. The company was fined $600,000 plus additional costs.
As you might already know, online reviews can have a heavy influence on the customer's decision.
So, it's important to ensure that all of them are sent from actual human beings.
Otherwise, you might face the consequences.
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