It doesn’t take much of a search to see just how bad this problem is getting for Facebook business users.
So, what is actually happening out there?
About a month ago one of my clients phoned me and told me his rating on Facebook had dropped hugely overnight, from 5 stars to 3! He was extremely worried, as he couldn’t see any reason for it. He is so customer conscious he couldn’t think why at least 3 reviews had been posted overnight giving a 1 star rating, but not one new name appeared in the review section on the page. I went to work and what I found out horrified me!
Facebook is allowing people to post reviews anonymously! People can say what they like about you, and you have no right to see it, no right to answer to it and no right to ask it be taken down if it is untrue! If the person writing the review has set their privacy setting so you can see them – that is it – nothing you can do to change it!
What this means is that any rival can post anything they like on your page and knock down your ratings, which is what we think happened in my client’s case.
What can you do to protect your reputation?
At the moment, until Facebook get their act together you have only one option that I can see – please come back to me if you find anything different; you have to change your page status from a business to a community, place or some other setting. It is the only way to lose the stars off the page and so restore your reputation!
It is a shame that Facebook didn’t envisage this problem for the millions of honest businesses out there who would value reviews, and I’ll keep an eye out for when they finally wake up to this. If they even let you see what had been written with an ‘anon rating’, and gave you a right to reply, it wouldn’t be so bad, but they don’t – so one to be wary of!
Voice of gloom and doom over!
UPDATE October 2016!
Since writing this article Facebook have finally given you the option to show reviews or not. This doesn’t solve the problem completely because if you have a lot of good ones and just a few bad you still have no right to reply. More recently a client of mine received a terrible review which was clearly made up for attention and with the purpose of not paying for the product. We put a statement on the facebook page and asked our supporters what they thought of the service they had received and were swamped with dozens of indignant people posting great reviews to counteract the false one. Job done!