Greetings from inside the SEOigloo!
Back in January, I blogged about the fact that Google was failing to count their own reviews in the A-J listings and the small popup in Maps. One had to click into the bigger popup to see Google reviews counted amongst the other reviews from outside sources. So, a site with 10 reviews from Yelp and 4 from Google would only show 10 reviews in the primary interfaces.
Well, I’m all excited to announce that, from what I see, Google is now counting all my reviews I’ve left. They are appearing in the A-J rank and in the little popup. I looked at my oldest and newest reviews and all are being counted.
YAY, YAY….but…uhm…something is still not right…
Check out my most recent review for Mike Blumenthal’s company. From the screenshot, you can see that both Will Scott and I have left reviews for Mike.
But when you click on the 2 reviews link, you’ll see this:
For some goofy reason, Google has decided to count our 2 reviews as 4 reviews!
I went and crosschecked this with other reviews I’ve left and sure enough, Google is counting each of its own reviews twice. It’s almost as if they are overcompensating for all those months when they weren’t counting their reviews at all. Now they’re counting them twice!
What’s Going On Here?
My guess is that it’s just a bug. It certainly seems like one.
In regards to why Google is now counting my reviews, I want to mention that I don’t think this is a sandbox-type filter on the age of the reviews. I’ve been checking periodically since December and it’s only today I saw the reviews being finally counted, the most recent of which is from the end of February. So, I don’t think the reviews had to age to be counted.
Could it be that I, as a reviewer, had to age to be counted? Since Google doesn’t show you when people join up to be reviewers, I researched this in the best way I could. I found a reviewer with only one review to their credit, left on March 5, 2008. My assumption is that their profile began the day they left their sole review just a couple of weeks ago. Not only is their review being counted, it’s being counted twice. So, I don’t think reviewers have to age before their reviews are numbered.
So, I think we’ve just witnessed a change in the review system which, while addressing the older bug of Google not counting its own reviews, is just being plain silly by counting them twice. Is everyone else seeing this, too? What do you think?