It comes as no surprise when you find your business listed in a Ripoff Report for apparent Google Business Page reviews when you have been taking on Review Spam for the past couple of years. The only question why did it take a pissed of spammer this long to use Ripoff Report?
When you take on review spam (Fake Negative and Fake Positive) you naturally piss of the people that created the fake reviews in the first instance. The typical response to having all their fake reviews removed is to go and add a fake review to my own Online Ownership business listing, which are almost impossible to have removed.
Pissed off Spammer & Ripoff Report
This is a badge of honour for me, because it shows how I am getting under the skin of review spammers out there. However for a normal business out there being hit with a Spammy Ripoff report it can be quite devastating in how to deal with this.
In the Ripoff report I have apparently created fake positive reviews for a divorce lawyer in NY, the truth being I reported some fake reviews added to his business listing via the Google My Business forum. The Google spam review team deemed them to be against Google My Businesses Guidelines and removed them.
The spammer has also then created a report for the divorce attorney and again name Online Ownership within their Ripoff report.
This is where the spammer shows his real intent, by adding my business name to the second report created for the divorce lawyer.
Can Anything Be Done about Fake Ripoff Reports
In my case being in the UK, not very much. I would need to proceed in a US court because that is where Ripoff Report is based. In their legal section on their website they quite bluntly say that even if you had a court order from your country, you can pretty much suck eggs because we are based in the US and have no assets outside of the US.
They then try and dissuade US businesses from trying to take legal action by listing a “long history of winning these types of cases”.
Both statements are incorrect and Ripoff Report has lost cases outside of the US and within the US with some currently pending.
Personally I am not phased by this, it shows I am becoming a thorn in the side of fake reviewers and anyone can check my reputation online pretty quickly. The lawyer on the other hand may wish to take action.
Basic Advise for Ripoff Victims
Your country is going to play a big part in your decision and legal options.
Responding to negative review on a Google business listing, I would recommend a calm and thoughtful response.
In the case of Ripoff report, it would depend on the content of the report. By responding you are adding further content to the page, which could make the report appear more prominently in search results.
However if they are a legitimate customer then I would respond in a calm and professional manner.
If you are in the US, look at your legal options.
If the report is appearing prominently for your Name / Brand name (page 1 ) then you can look at using a reputation management company or if you feel confident you can try this yourself.
The basic idea is to have other News, Articles, Sites that publish content you with your Name / Brand in the title which will push down the Ripoff report further down the page and fingers crossed onto Page 2.
If this deals with a product or service, then ideally you would want this product or service in the articles title also.
- Local News
- Local Charities
- Social Media Profiles (only top tier)
- Do you write for any Sites, Create a Company Bio
- Start a Secondary Blog
- Images on Site Should Contain the Business Name
- YouTube Video/s with Name in Title
Page 3 is the best place to hide a dead body!
And to the spammer out there that created these two Ripoff reports,