Tech Tips

September 16, 2015

How to Deal with a Negative Review on Google Business Profile

Fund a negative review on Google Business Profile for your business? Naturally, if it's spam or fraudulent, you'll want it removed. Google does have a process for reviewing and removing it.

“XYZ Corp is the worst!  Terrible service!”

A negative review has appeared on your Google Business Profile listing (formerly known as Google My Business).  What do you do? You can’t delete the review...are you stuck?  Will it stay there forever?

Not really.  You do have options.  They depend on what kind of negative review it is.


If the review is from a real customer with a complaint:

If a real person is unsatisfied, your best practice is to respond to the review directly, within Google Business Profile. Ask the customer to contact you privately. If a legitimate issue exists, apologize and do your best to fix things. Often, you can turn the experience into a positive one. Afterward, your response on the listing shows everyone that you care about customers.


If the review is fraudulent (spam, a competitor posted it, it’s not relevant or illegal):

This happens a lot. "Junk reviews" can show up for many reasons, such as sabotage attempts by a competitor, or plain old spam.


If you do get a fraudulent review, you can report it to Google & ask them to remove it.  Here’s how you do that.

  1. Go to your business’ listing on Google Business Profile.  (Easiest way is to search for your business name on Google Maps.)
  2. Click the Reviews link on your business’ listing.  It’s under the images in the top right box.  For example, “1 review”.
  3. You should see a Reviews Window pop up.  Position your mouse cursor over the reviewer’s name.  Just below it on the right, you should see a gray flag appear.  Click this flag.
  4. You’ll be taken to a new Google window titled, “Report a policy violation”. Start the report by entering your email address. 
  5. Below this you’ll see this list of Violation Type choices:
    • This post contains hateful, violent, or inappropriate content
    • This post contains advertising or spam
    • Off-topic
    • This post contains conflicts of interest
  6. Click the most appropriate choice. When in doubt, use the "advertising or spam" option.
  7. Click Submit.

This submits the review to Google for their consideration.  Google may take anywhere from a few hours to a few weeks to respond.  If they find the review is indeed fraudulent, spam, or violent, they’ll remove the review.

It’s a good idea to check your Google Business Profile listing frequently.  Reviews are public; anyone who looks up your business name will see them.  Keeping an eye on things—and reporting any fraudulent reviews you see—helps you put your best foot forward for your customers.