Free Shopping Hack That Finds Fake Reviews Is Now Even More Useful

The savvy shopper's go-to tool for detecting bogus product reviews has been upgraded. Here's what you should know before your next purchase.

Free Shopping Hack That Finds Fake Reviews Is Now Even More Useful Photo by one photo / Shutterstock.com

One of the handiest online shopping aids just became even more useful.

Fakespot has long been known as a tool for vetting the authenticity of Amazon product reviews. I use it often myself and told you about it most recently in “2 Tools You Must Use When Shopping on Amazon.”

Now, Fakespot can also be used to vet reviews on three other websites:

  • Apple’s App Store
  • TripAdvisor
  • Yelp

Ming Ooi, chief strategy officer for Fakespot, tells Money Talks News that Fakespot recently added the capability of analyzing reviews from those three websites.

Additionally, Fakespot has beefed up its analyses of Amazon products. Ooi explains:

“… for Amazon product reviews we added historical views for number of reviews and prices. So, once a product has been analyzed in our system, if you run another analysis later on, you’ll be able to see if there were reviews deleted by Amazon, and if the product price has changed over time.”

Now when you use Fakespot to vet the reviews for a product sold on Amazon, you will see a “Review Count” section and a “Price Track” section in Fakespot’s analysis of the reviews.

How Fakespot works

Using Fakespot to vet a review is simple and quick — it takes a matter of seconds. Here’s all you have to do:

  1. Copy the address of the webpage on which a product, app or business is reviewed.
  2. Paste that address into the field on Fakespot’s website where it states, “Paste any Amazon product, Yelp/TripAdvisor business or Apple App Store here.”
  3. Click the gray “ANALYZE” button.

For example, say that you want to vet the nearly 5,000 reviews of this Bed Band product sold on Amazon. You would paste the address “https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004I3VDWY” into Fakespot’s website. That’s basically it.

After you hit the “Analyze” button, Fakespot shows you its analysis of the product’s reviews. The analysis is called a “Fakespot Review Analyzer Report,” as you’ll see near the top left of the report.

For example, here is the Fakespot Review Analyzer Report for the Bed Band product I mentioned.

Near the top right of the report, you will see what’s called the “Fakespot Review Grade,” which is the core of Fakespot’s analyses. Fakespot grades reviews on an A-to-F scale.

Fakespot works by using a patented algorithm to look for patterns that might indicate unreliable reviews, according to the site. Here’s how Fakespot explains why this is important for shoppers:

“With so many online shopping options, a strong or weak product review can have a huge impact on whether or not a purchase is made. The credibility of these reviews is undermined by businesses who leave fake reviews for themselves or for their competitors — or by individuals with an undisclosed bias. Shoppers in need of a second opinion use Fakespot when considering their next online purchase.”

Fakespot’s apps and browser extensions

If you do much shopping on your phone instead of a computer, you might prefer Fakespot’s apps to its website. The app is available for:

Fakespot also offers browser extensions, which are available for:

Ooi notes that two different versions of browser extension are available for Chrome and Firefox: a free version and a $1.99-per-month subscription version.

With the free browser extension, you click a button to have a Fakespot analysis run for an Amazon product. With the subscription extension, Fakespot review grades will automatically appear alongside products whenever you are on Amazon’s website.

Do you use Fakespot, or do you swear by other shopping aids likes it? Let us know below or on our Facebook page.

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