Is Paying for Fake Customer Reviews Worth the Risk?

Written by: Tone Loberg
Posted on: January 1, 2022

The competitive world of e-commerce puts significant pressure on online retailers to stand out, making customer reviews an invaluable asset. While the temptation to generate fake reviews might exist, the risks far outweigh the benefits. Let’s explore why.

The Rise of User Reviews in eCommerce

User reviews are a blend of product-specific feedback and overall shopping experience assessments. They typically come in two formats: ratings, often on a scale of 1-5 stars, and text reviews. These reviews are so integral to online shopping that some companies have resorted to unethical practices to inflate their numbers.

The Dark Side of User Reviews

Amazon, a giant in the eCommerce space, has spotlighted how some retailers are offering free products in exchange for reviews. But this issue isn’t confined to international markets; it’s also prevalent in the Nordic countries. Multiple instances have been exposed in the media, revealing a more extensive problem than initially thought.

The Risks of Fake Customer Reviews

Fake reviews present a multitude of risks, with the most immediate being a loss of customer trust. Unlike traditional advertising, which consumers know is paid for, user reviews are presumed to be unbiased opinions. This mismatch between expectation and reality can be devastating for a brand’s reputation. Legal repercussions, such as fines for deceptive marketing practices, are also a concern.

How to Spot Fake User Reviews

  1. Timing and Volume: Fake reviews often appear in clusters, published around the same time.
  2. Language and Details: Fake reviews use repetitive language and lack specific details about the product or experience.
  3. Overwhelming Positivity: Exclusively positive reviews, without a single critical word, are a red flag.
  4. Review Focus: If a review reads like an advertisement, be skeptical.
  5. Verified Customer Badge: Trustworthy online stores use software to confirm that the review was written by a genuine buyer.

The Power of Genuine Reviews

Authentic reviews are more than just feedback; they’re your brand’s backbone. Systems like Lipscore can help you collect real reviews from real customers, thus fostering trust and encouraging future sales.

Top 5 Reasons to Avoid Fake Reviews

  1. It’s illegal.
  2. It can permanently damage your brand reputation.
  3. The backlash from customers could have long-term consequences for sales.
  4. There are ethical ways to garner genuine reviews.
  5. You simply don’t need them; focus on improving the quality of your service instead.


Rather than jeopardizing your brand with fake reviews, focus on delivering exceptional customer experiences that naturally lead to positive reviews. This is the most reliable strategy for long-term success.

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