Customer Review Sites that try to Blackmail You

At Comaco Toys we pride ourselves on having excellent customer service. Very occasionally problems do occur; an item may fail to arrive in the expected time scale, it may arrive damaged in transit, or it might even prove to be defective. Whatever care you take with product sourcing, shipping methods and packaging all of these issues will inevitably occur at the some time or another. The trick is how well you work to resolve them.

Positive customer reviews at Comaco Toys

Around 6 months ago one customer in Australia had an issue with a toy gun we sent not arriving within the expected time scale. Following some correspondence we resent the item assuming the original had got lost in transit. This too took longer than expected and the customer left us a review on a website specialising in negative customer testimonials and offering reviewees the option of contesting the review at a considerable price. The first we learnt of the review was someone emailing us saying they would they would minimise its effects if we paid them lots of money. This was sent within a few hours of the review being published and we have had many similar emails since.

It so happens that the customer’s toy gun actually turned up very shortly afterwards and the situation was resolved very amicably. The customer however found it was impossible to retract the review, but he did leave a follow up comment saying they had acted hastily and the problem was now solved. Unfortunately this comment appears not very prominently beneath the main reputation damaging text of the original review.

Over the last few months this review has been steadily rising up the Google search results for our website. It is now appearing at the bottom of page 1 for some searches which is obviously a significant concern. However from what I can find out the only way of doing anything about this is too get a court action for defamation against  the reviewer upheld and then submit this to google so that they will remove the review from their index.

Currently I am not willing to go to this much trouble and expense, especially as I don’t really blame the customer. It is the “review” website they used I have a significant issue with. They are not interested in genuinely representative reviews of companies and products; positive, negative and indifferent. They court only the negative and their business is extortion pure and simple. Each defamatory attack is SEO ‘d for maximum effectiveness and then the victim is repeatedly pestered with emails offering to suppress it only if they pay through the nose.

I have chosen not to mention the name of the review site in question for obvious reasons, but any readers sufficiently interested will be able to find it by googling us. The situation is annoying and frustrating. Has anyone one else out there had similar issues?

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