Amazon is the biggest online marketplace featuring an impressive range of products and some very competitive prices. However, popularity comes with a price, so those in charge of the website don't always have the time to distinguish fake reviews from the objective ones. Since a lot of us base shopping choices on other people's opinions, false reviews can be quite problematic. Fortunately, there's an easy way to spot fake reviews, and I'm going to show it to you.
Lets' say that you want to buy something like a TV, and you find an item on Amazon that is a lot cheaper than most of the products coming from popular brands with reviews claiming that it's actually better. There's a saying that warns us that "when something seems too good to be true, it probably isn't true at all". But how can you tell when a review is actually objective or when it's just a fake meant to fool you into spending money on a low-quality product? There's a cool online service called Fakespot that does that for you. It's completely free and, in my experience, has proved to be quite accurate in its assumptions.
How can Fakespot tell if a review is fake? It analyzes the activity of the user who wrote it. It's pretty hard for someone to be a reliable source of information if that person has written multiple reviews about products made or sold by a specific company, all of them overwhelmingly positive, and all without actually buying the products described or similar ones for comparison. Of course, nowadays, many companies employ people to write good reviews about their products, even items that are actually worth buying on their own merit, so you will undoubtedly encounter false positives, but you still have the advantage of knowing that you could be deceived before actually spending your money.
In case you're curios about using this service, there are two very easy ways to do so:
- In case you're not a Google Chrome fan, you can simply go to the Fakespot website using any browser, then paste the link from Amazon page of a product and press the blue Analyze button at the end of the text box. If the respective page has already been checked by the service, you will instantly see the previous results and, if you want to, you can ask for a new analysis. Once it finishes checking things out, Fakespot will tell you the total number of reviews found and show you how many of them seem fake. Based on the amount of "low quality" reviews detected, the website will tell you whether you can trust what you're reading or not.
- If you use Google Chrome, there's a Fakespot extension that you can add to the browser, which should provide a quicker way to trigger the analysis, but it doesn't seem to be completely functional at the moment or at least doesn't always work properly on my PC.
From my perspective, Fakespot is a service that is most accurate when you're analyzing newer products with few reviews. After all, if even the few existing reviews are fake, then you pretty much know what to expect.
In case you're someone who likes shopping online, you should also take a look at some of our previous articles such as "The most wacky yet handy IT gizmos", "Why pay more? Top 5 cheap Android smartphones" or "Cheap alternatives to the expensive Apple Watch".