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Google have decided to increase the minimum number of reviews businesses require to qualify for displaying Google Seller Ratings (GSR) in AdWords ads. The current number stands at 30, so Google being the lovely gem that they are, have not just decided to increase it by 10, 15 or 20.

No.

Google have decided to increase the minimum, to 150 reviews, that’s five times the original amount needed!

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Well, Google, what do you have to say for yourself? Well, nothing in all honesty, they have declined to comment on the matter and have yet to release a statement thus far.

So, what does this actually mean?

For large businesses, this won’t really have much of an impact as they will obtain enough reviews in the 12-month period for them to go about their business, unscathed. For smaller businesses, this will obviously affect them a lot more. Smaller brands and retailers will find it more difficult to gather 150 reviews in a singular 12-month period, meaning they will inevitably lose their GSR extension on the Search Engine Results Pages..

The main problem with this is that consumers do look out for seller ratings, and with more products and services being bought online, trust is a major factor. If the seller ratings aren’t there, a customer is potentially more likely to choose a company that has a seller rating and reviews as they can actively see what type of company they are going to be dealing with.

Seems unfair doesn’t it? Well, it is unfair for smaller companies, however, this update could also help consumers, a company's seller rating can be extremely high but only based on an extremely small sample size, which could be deemed as misleading and damaging to the consumer experience. This update is aiming to make sure all companies have an adequate and realistic seller rating, so consumers know exactly what they are going to get.

Do you agree with Google? I agree that an update was needed and Google are trying to do a positive thing for consumers, but instantly jumping from 30 to 150 seems a bit radical, baby steps, Google, baby steps.

Here at I-COM, we want to help and speak to multiple review providers (Trustpilot, Feefo etc) on a regular basis to ensure our clients are aware of methods they can trial to boost the number of reviews they receive.. If you require more information on GSR or how you can improve reviews for your business, our award-winning digital marketing team are ready to hear from you, call us on 0161 402 3170, or, alternatively you can email us or fill in our contact form.