Google Seller Rating Changes

We’re heading into the new holiday season at full steam.  COVID has changed the nature of online buying and we’re seeing several e-commerce sites re-vamp and pivot their strategy to help with the amount of new online shoppers.  It’s more important than ever to help these shoppers have the best experience possible.  It’s also critical to give these new shoppers a voice and a chance to speak the truth about their experiences!

With that, there are a series of Google publishing changes that have occurred on the ResellerRatings platform to ensure that consistent, high-quality review content is being syndicated to all seller rating partners.  We take pride in our review procurement– having defined ratings and reviews benchmarks for decades.  

These new changes will impact all retailers and brands who collect with us.  We’ve already communicated this out to our merchant clients and continue to outline the changes below.   Working with Google for over the past 5+ years, there are some new requirements that we will be pushing, to ensure the stories we provide our publishing partners are of the best quality.  

Updated Company and Seller Rating Reviews

Merchants can no longer offer financial incentives for company reviews

This is pretty straightforward.  It’s long been known that offering incentives can skew CX scores.  Merchant members and merchants who are soliciting reviews are now, no longer allowed to solicit ratings and reviews with a monetary or financial incentive.  So, no ‘write a review’, with a monetary award attached to it. 

Company reviews can no longer be imported

Only reviews you collect with us, and that are shown on ResellerRatings.com are allowed to be syndicated to our publishing partners.  That is, for a review to be sent with Google, we want to ensure it’s been collected through our survey process, engaged with our collection methodology, and vetted through our anti-fraud systems.  We will not be syndicating reviews not collected by us.  You can still import product reviews and still use reviews from other sites for our analytical tools and backend for reputation management.

No review deletion upon leaving our services

If you as a client or even solicitor of organic reviews stop or leaves our service, the corresponding reviews are never removed or deleted from the system (unless it is reported for flag violation issues or a reviewer removes their own reviews).  Reviews, en masse, stay on ResellerRatings and continue to be included to the feeds to Google.  An example straight from Googles Publisher Guidelines – 

“For example, if a merchant switches review providers, the provider of the original review should maintain a page with the reviews previously collected for that merchant and continue to submit those reviews in their feed to Google.”

Fair Moderation Policies

Luckily not much is changing here for us at ResellerRatings.  To re-count the core things to be aware of

  • Merchants cannot remove reviews or moderate them (this could never be done at ResellerRatings, to begin with)
  • Our flagging terms continue to be upheld and will remain in place as they coincide with the new publishing terms already.
  • Reviews have the ability to delete reviews at any time – which can be done via their user profile, if they call us, or contact us, or they can initiate a full deletion of data via GDPR privacy requests
  • Moderation applies to all reviews solicited vs not.  

These changes do not impact ResellerRatings collection methodologies too much but we always like to keep you up to date of the latest!

To read the full list of changes from Google, please check out the following Google notes.

Thank you

Leave a Reply