Trying to find a new company or product can be a difficult decision if you don’t know who to trust. Studies have shown that 70% of people check online reviews of places and products before they make their final decision, but what site is the best place to look for these reviews? Leale’s Transmission & Auto Service wants to make sure your decision for an auto shop is well-informed and based on trustworthy reviews that aren’t fabricated, so we’ve broken it down for you here.
Yelp vs. Google
Yelp and Google are without a doubt two of the most popular review sites people check before buying a product or service—so which is the best place to look for an auto repair shop?
Some of the benefits of Yelp are that it is the #1 site people like you turn to when looking for reviews, which means it’s also one of the most popular places for people to leave reviews, both good and bad. It doesn’t allow companies to remove negative reviews if they don’t like them, and it has a filter that attempts to weed out falsified reviews left by people who have been pressured into leaving positive reviews or paid to do so. You can also view all the reviews on Yelp without having to be signed in or creating an account.
Google also allows you to see reviews without being logged in, but it currently allows business owners to “manage” the reviews that are left on their business’s page, meaning they have the power to decide which reviews take priority and are shown to you first. It’s also not as easy to navigate as it is on Yelp, and since most consumers go to Yelp first, Google is less likely to have an abundance of reviews for one place.
One of the main concerns about online reviews found on Yelp is the growing number of fake or dishonest reviews posted. This happens when a business offers discounts or gift cards to consumers if they leave 5-star reviews, or if they hire someone to write fake positive reviews on Yelp for them. It can also occur if a competitor of that company has paid people to post negative reviews to divert business. While this is mostly an issue with restaurants, it can be true for all businesses, including auto repair shops, and since your car’s health is involved in that decision, you want to make sure the reviews you’re reading are honest and trustworthy. Yelp has taken it upon itself to try to filter out fake or misleading reviews and flag businesses that push positive reviews for cash on their site. Their algorithm to filter out dishonest or fake reviews has been improved upon over the years, but it still isn’t perfect, leaving some consumers in doubt.
Not the best, but not bad
Overall, more than 90% of the reviews on Yelp are genuine and trustworthy, and Yelp is aware of the fake review problem and is constantly working to weed out the dishonest reviews and tighten its algorithm. The best approach to online reviews for auto repair shops, and anywhere else, is variety. Yelp is a great place to start reading reviews—and you’re likely to find more reviews there than anywhere else—but reading reviews on other sites such as Google or the testimonials on the business’s webpage and Facebook page are good ways to get a sense for the overall communal opinion on a business. Take overly glowing and gloating reviews or overly negative and bashing reviews with a grain of salt, and do research on the company before making your final decision. Leale’s Transmission & Auto Service has reviews on Yelp, Google, and our webpage that we don’t pay for. We encourage you to check them out if you’re considering an auto repair shop in the San Jose, CA, area.
Yelp, Google, and more—read unbiased reviews for Leale’s.