The whole article is here for those of you who can negotiates the Times's paywall
TripAdvisor and Yelp are accusing Google of favouring its own reviews in search. The European Commission is carrying out its own investigation. Even Google said yesterday that TripAdvisor and Yelp had been affected by a quirk caused by an update to its ... algorithms.
But we would like to make a broader point...
Google is where your customers start every search - even when they know what they are looking for (and most certainly when they are not sure). And every time someone searches for your business Google are showing them reviews. Google reviews.
Part of professional review management is about not putting all your eggs in one basket. You may think that TripAdvisor will continue to be the be-all-and-end-all of search for your hotel or that Yelp is fundamental for your dental practice or that AllAgents will recover their pre-eminent position in search for estate agents, but we will make sure you have all the bases covered. You need to look great everywhere that matters to your potential customers - and that means looking great in whatever arena is delivered when someone searches for your business - and today that is on Google.
This raises one simple question for any business paying an independent review site: why would you do that when your customers are looking on Google and at Google reviews?
We are not betting large sums on Google giving up its clout in this area any time soon, but if they do (or are forced to) we, and our clients, will be ready.