Birdeye offers two different services. Service one, they pull in reviews from 3rd party websites and populate them onto their review platform. These reviews are then added to your business listing on their website. There is a fee involved to get the reviews removed. According to complaints with the BBB, consumers allege that they were quoted $2400 in order to help get the negative reviews removed. Birdeye creates listings on their website that you need to pay to get your information updated. I have yet to find an opt-out option.
The second service Birdeye offers is review sonication services. You import your customer’s contact information and your customer is asked to leave a review for your business on the review platform of your choice. Yelp has come out against review solicitation services and has stated that it is in violation of their TOS. This policy has had an impact on other similar service providers. I have been told that Birdeye is very upset with Yelp’s new policy. Why wouldn’t Birdeye, they have VC’s that have backed them and they need Birdeye to make money to protect their investment.
Google also may have taken issue with Birdeye review solicitation services. Back in October, Google removed countless reviews. Several of us that cover SEO reviews were talking about countless reviews disappearing via DM’s and email communication. We were looking for a pattern and to see if the obvious fake review networks were impacted. I do know of another review solicitation service that lost their reviews too. I will cover that at a later time
Craig Mount took the bull by the horns and wrote up his findings and research, ANYONE ELSE USING BIRDEYE & LOSING GOOGLE REVIEWS?
His blog post was shared with the local SEO community. I even quoted it with my coworkers. We I first heard that countless reviews had been removed, I was hopeful that Google was cracking down on review networks. Birdeye released a statement stating it was a manual action and not an algorithm. That should have been the end of the story. However, that is not the case. Craig received 3 missed calls that he did not answer and then the text message from Pietros Consavari came in. It was conveyed that one of the CEO’s was not happy with the write-up and wanted it removed or the author shot. That is rather a knee-jerk reaction. It was conveyed that Birdeye would seek legal counsel to get the article removed. I was looped in as a source to cover this. After speaking with Craig, it was decided that he was going to republish the article. He took it down to end the problem. The problem with that is, he did nothing wrong with his write up. This is a topic and subject that needs to be discussed.
I don’t know what the motivation is for wanting the post removed. I suspect its vanity. I looked at Birdeye’s Glassdoor reviews and see a clear pattern of several new positive reviews posted right after a negative review is left. The positive reviews usually are posted with a 2 week period with most of them being posted on the same day. If it is vanity that angered Birdeye so much, maybe they would understand how business owners feel and change their policy to allow the removal of their information. Time will tell. I do need to say that I don’t like people throwing around bringing lawyers in a scare tactic. That is laughable coming reputation company. It does not convey the creating a positive experience that Birdeye touts.