In recent years, Google-type online reviews have been more and more influencing the choices consumers/customers make when choosing professionals, particularly a civil marriage celebrant, photographer or caterer. Customers are able to share their experiences to allow web users to compare service providers or products.
Reviews can also allow companies to serve their customers better. While important, online reviews should not be the only decision criterion, because they are fallible. You should rather rely on your first contact (digital, telephone or in-person) to make your choice.
Recognizing fake reviews of marriage celebrants
The success of a business or product is increasingly linked to its online reviews. More than 70% of consumers consult online reviews before deciding who to do business with.
There is a real industry of fake customer reviews. Some businesses charge a few dozen dollars to put a fake review on a company’s page.
Here are the non-exhaustive criteria to recognize fake customer reviews:
- the person writes under a pseudonym and his profile image is an avatar or generic image
- the writing style is unnatural (fake review businesses are overseas and they use Google Translate)
- the review has too many emphatic keywords (the best, exceptional, great, etc.)
- too many reviews that contain the name of the company
- many reviews in a short period of time
- many people who only leave one review (a fake account created just to post this review)
- name of the person does not match a real identity found on the internet
- defamatory comments made by a competitor
Reviews on our service
In the last few weeks, we have observed on our Google page reviews by fake customers who denigrate our services and damage our reputation. The modus operandi is always the same. A person denigrates our services on very specific points which have made our customers happy and driven our success since 2011.
People are reviewing our civil marriage service without having received it and without having seen our unique facilities. The names of these people also do not appear in the marriage notices published by the Directeur de l’état civil.
Each year we celebrate several hundred civil marriages to the great delight of our newlyweds. We are however amazed to see that marriage celebrants engage in such practices to denigrate a civil marriage service business like ours. It is even more surprising because such a practice is punishable judicially.