I’m going to risk it all now and talk about a hot topic. I do mean the highly volatile and slightly (ok maybe severely) controversial subject of Facebook star ratings. I think I just heard hundreds of you scream.
Maybe you’ve reserved yourself to distaste and kept your hands off of your hair.
Many of you, I’ve heard, have gone to other social media outlets for more direct options in receiving reviews. Whatever category you’re in, I feel your pain. In all my years of SMM, I’ve never seen this kind of response from a website update.
Ok. So we’ve gotten out our frustration. Improving your social engagement in media can be daunting. If you haven’t heard the latest on this controversy or you don’t have a valid business address on Facebook (more on that later…), then you should know a few things about it.
- Facebook has introduced star ratings as a test subject. The manner in which Facebook has utilized and programmed their rating system aside, it may change. And it has. BUT not necessarily in a good way. Like putting on someone else’s socks, Facebook is mimicking other rating systems (like yelp, for example) with little regard to its original use – a social media.
- Ratings are anonymous. This little doozy has put millions of business owners in giant trouble. You can’t see the reviewer.You can’t contact the reviewer to make amends. And you can’t determine whether the reviewer was ever actually a client or customer. Nada. Zilch. Nothing. Unless the reviewer allows their post to be public. Low star ratings from 1-3 are rife with this problem. Anonymous and staying just that way. Personally I think these are the weak users on social media, but their weak opinions carry the same weight as someone like me who will show ‘face’.
- The rating system is wonky. Pardon me while I make a British social media reference. But it IS wonky. A website with one review of 5 little golden stars still only shows a 2.5 business page rating. Hmm… let me do the math. Facebook, please sharpen your pencils! This is NOT rocket science.
Social Media Ratings are NOT dead
Rating systems in SMM are imperative, don’t get me wrong. Client feedback creates a powerful online presence and can produce leads until the cows come home. None of those matter if the system is still being ironed out. Facebook has been losing advertisers since the onslaught of the rating system. We are one of the main Facebook advertising agencies who are participating in the boycott. Why? Our own Facebook account shows a rating of 3.5-stars when all of our visible ratings are 5-stars!
How to Get Rid of Facebook Star Ratings
Now let’s get down to the nitty-gritty. A few tutorials online have been struck down in the last few years. One tiny detail remains. In order to have a business star rating on Facebook, you must have a valid address.
You heard me right. It’s just an address. But, that address is what lets consumers looks for businesses nearby FIND your company. So, there lies a catch twenty-two. Do you change this portion or hope that fellow consumers don’t see what appears to be a crappy rating?
So, to remove the ratings (unless Facebook programmers return with a new loophole) follow these steps.
First, make sure you’re in admin mode and go to your Fanpage. Under your profile picture, click on “About.” On the “About” page, look for “Basic Info” and click on the small edit icon (latest Facebook versions depict a little pencil).
Go down to “Address” and click the little pencil edit. You’ll see a map. Un-check the spot where it says, “Show this map on your Page and enable check-ins.” Make sure you save your changes or you’ll still be in the rating system asking yourself, why? Why?!!
Ultimately, you’re faced with losing the wonky star ratings and also losing a dominant presence on the online map. No “check-in,” no stars. Capische? And people nearby won’t see you as a local business.
You may ask… what would I do? Exactly the reason I wrote this! If your business can live without people finding you nearby or most of your consumers find you online, I recommend you take the steps above. If your business thrives on local passers-by, please keep the crappy ratings if they are over 3-stars or if the ratings are higher than your completion. Realizing there are a lot of IFs, I wish you the best of luck in bringing customers into your place of business.
This is obviously a touchy subject. Tell me your take or ask a question IF I left something off… I would love to hear it.