What Is Trustpilot – and Can You Trust Their Reviews?

Last Updated on January 9, 2024 by 29 Comments

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What Is Trustpilot – and Can You Trust Their Reviews?
Blog / Business / What Is Trustpilot – and Can You Trust Their Reviews?

As you may know, customer reviews play an important role in helping people research products, services, and brands that they’re interested in. Trustpilot is one of many platforms that helps to facilitate this process by collecting and publishing reviews and business data.

In this article, we’ll take a deep dive into what Trustpilot is and whether its reviews are trustworthy. We’ll also provide some tips to help both customers and brands get the most out of this platform.

Let’s jump in!

What Is Trustpilot?

Put simply, Trustpilot is a third-party customer review site. It’s very similar to Yelp in that it provides easy-to-read statistics on business’ customer satisfaction rates as well as full reviews from individual shoppers.

You can look up brand or product reviews on Trustpilot for free. Simply type your keyword into the search bar on the home page:

The Trustpilot home page.

If you’re looking for the best of a certain type of product rather than feedback on a specific item, you can use the category browsing buttons. Either way, Trustpilot will return a list of relevant brands:

Trustpilot search results.

When you access the page for a brand you’re interested in, you’ll probably first notice its overall star rating at the top:

The Elegant Themes Trustpilot profile.

You’ll also see a breakdown of the business’ star ratings as well as the Business Transparency section. This is only visible if the brand has claimed its Trustpilot profile. It will tell you if the company encourages reviews, if it responds to negative feedback, and if it pays to access additional features on the platform.

If you scroll down, you can read specific reviews:

A Trustpilot review.

Customers who wrote in at the business’ request will have an Invited label next to their name. This means the brand sent them a link to Trustpilot’s review submission form after they completed their purchase.

Trustpilot is free to use, although you have to create an account to leave reviews or claim your business profile. There’s also an option for brands to pay for additional features such as advanced analytics and access to marketing assets.

Can You Trust Trustpilot’s Reviews?

The short answer is: “Yes”. You can trust reviews on Trustpilot. With over 111 million reviews and over a decade of experience, it’s a pretty legitimate platform. However, you’ll likely find the most valuable reviews when researching brands that are active on the site. It’s also important to keep in mind that most customers only take the time to write a review if they had an overwhelmingly positive or negative experience.

For instance, if you look up a well-known big-box retailer, most of the reviews will probably be negative:

The Target Trustpilot review.

You can also see in the screenshot above that Target hasn’t claimed its profile and doesn’t respond to customer feedback. Although this an established business that many people trust, its reviews don’t reflect that (through no fault of Trustpilot’s).

On the other hand, many smaller online businesses that maintain active presences on the site have more useful reviews on their profiles. Just keep in mind that the type of product and the seller’s investment in its reviews on this platform may influence the accuracy of the results.

How to Spot Fake Reviews on Trustpilot

Just as most blogs receive spam comments, every review platform will also attract fake submissions. If you’re trying to use Trustpilot to determine whether a particular product or service is worth investing in, there are a few red flags to watch out for.

First, click on the See a detailed overview button in the Business Transparency section of the profile you’re looking at. This will show you some data about the brand’s reviews:

The Detailed Overview screen on Trustpilot.

Also, scroll to the New reviews by star rating section. If there’s one month with an unusually huge spike in reviews – unlike the screenshot here – proceed with caution:

New reviews per month on Trustpilot.

Also, consider the business’ review sources on this page too. You can filter star rating distributions to only show you organic responses. In other words. unsolicited reviews:

Viewing organic reviews on Trustpilot.

Of course, solicited reviews aren’t necessarily fake or less trustworthy than organic ones. However, an unsolicited review likely means a customer feels quite strongly about the brand in question.

If a specific review (as opposed to the whole profile) seems suspicious to you, try looking into the reviewer. Accounts without profile pictures or names have naturally less legitimacy than complete profiles.

Likewise, you may be able to tell if the reviewer is paid to write targeted feedback by checking out their other reviews. If they’re all for one company or even just a few businesses in the same niche, proceed with caution.

Finally, look for bad grammar or vague, generic responses such as “Great!” or “Excellent service!” with no details of why the reviewer likes the product or brand. These may indicate fake, automated submissions by bots.

You can report suspicious reviews by clicking on the flag icon in the bottom right-hand corner:

The Trustpilot flag review button.

However, we suggest reserving this course of action for truly egregious posts. Besides, brands that are active on the platform are likely monitoring the reviews already, flagging any that break Trustpilot’s rules.

How Can Trustpilot Help Your Business?

As we mentioned at the beginning of this article, consumers often use third-party review sites to research a product before buying it. In fact, 91 percent of customers say that reading a positive review will make them more likely to purchase an item.

So, boosting the number of reviews for your brand (especially positive ones) could increase your sales. Trustpilot makes this easy. When you create a business account, you can start inviting customers to leave feedback.

You even have the option to automate this process and send an email invitation to customers when they complete their purchases. This is an easy and efficient way to grow your business.

It’s also smart to respond to negative reviews on Trustpilot. However, avoid accusing or blaming the customer when doing so. Instead, take an apologetic, helpful approach. Customers appreciate transparency and will be more forgiving of bad reviews if you accept responsibility for a poor experience and try to make it right.

Finally, you may want to embed Trustpilot reviews on your website. This acts as social proof to establish the legitimacy of your business. When visitors see that other people have purchased products from you successfully, they’ll likely feel more at ease about doing the same. Some plugins connect with review websites to help you display them to your site visitors.

Conclusion

Like many third-party review sites, Trustpilot is an important resource to consumers. They can seek out feedback on products, services, or brands they’re interested in to determine if they should follow through with their purchase.

In this post, we shared some highlights regarding how Trustpilot works. We also established that its reviews are trustworthy, although there are red flags to watch for. Lastly, we discussed how this platform could help boost your own business.

Do you have any questions about Trustpilot or using reviews on your website? Leave them for us in the comments section below!

Image by vladwel/shutterstock.com

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29 Comments

  1. Well, listen to my story.
    I have been a trustpilot user for almost a decade.
    Suddenly, they deleted all my reviews, positive and negative, after leaving a bad one about a big phone company. To be more precise, they banned my account deleting all the reviews in it. They didn’t even bother telling me, I found out myself months later.
    Is this an acceptable behavior from a company that blathers on about ethics?
    Not at all in my opinion.

  2. One issue not brought to light in these comments is the fact that a business’s Trustpilot profile is virtually invisible in search. What kind of business would pay to have its reviews buried in search (as opposed to exposed for all to see, as is the case with Google reviews)? I’ll tell you: the kind of business that positively does not want its reviews read.

  3. Trustpilot used to be decent and I was a validated reviewer. Now Trustpilot is allowing paying businesses to send takedown notices, if that business does not like what you wrote. I write fair and factual reviews always listing the pros and cons of a business. I recently wrote a review on a company and gave more positives than negatives. The company issued a take down and TP hid my review. Interestingly, this same company is trashed on other boards, yet they maintain a 4.5 star rating on TP. Now I understand why. This change in TP’s business model allows criminals to infiltrate their site in which TP also gains from it. I will not waste my time anymore with TP reviews. Therefore, I deleted my 15 year old account with TP and will totally scrutinize and think twice about using any business who states they have great TP reviews.

  4. I think they have a policy that customers can’t leave a review if it’s more than 1 year after they purchased product or service. I think that is unfair because a customer who had a bad experience may decide to write a review after 1 year of purchasing service or product, in which case the business would most likely “flag” the review and try to remove it (because date of service is wrong). BUT if it’s a positive review, (even if date of service is wrong), it’s unlikely that the business would complain. Therefore, the ratio of positive to negative reviews may be biased in favor of the company due to the stupid rule of 1-year “statute of limitation.” This rule makes TrustPilot unfair and should be changed.

  5. I found a company that is displaying a high trustpilot score on their site, only to discover that the rating is much lower on the trustpilot site itself. I reported that to trustpilot integrity team, but 40 days later, they did nothing, not even a reply to my complaint. Trustpilot is just a scam, takes money from companies to make them look good in the eyes of customers

  6. Rubbish. Somehow bad reviews are suppressed or possibly replaced with generic sounding praise. Scam as far as I can see. Pay to deceive your customers.

  7. Trustpilot creates an echo chamber of positive reviews. If a company doesn’t like a negative review, they can use various sneaky tricks to have it removed (all the whole basking in the joy of their utterly 100% genuine positive reviews).

    It really cannot be trusted. I wrote a review which was removed after providing many details, and frankly, if you look online, you can see people are very unhappy with this company, but the reviews on Trustpilot would lead you to believe they are a 5-star company.

    The practice of removing negative reviews is utterly shameful.

  8. Absolutely not, All the fake reviews are supported by trustpilot and the honest reviews bade on the real experience are flagged or removed by the companies and even after you send all the documentation to trustpilot integrity refuse to help.

    • Exactly! They will cite some rule in their guidelines why you should demonstrate what you’re claiming, and after you do they keep asking more, even when you provided them with more than enough proof. AND, it’s paid by those companies with crappy practices.

    • i posted a review on trust pilot and it was taken down by the company i reviewed. i didn’t have screenshots of the 12 phonecalls so it wasn’t legitimate.

    • truspilot can’t be trusted at all. if your company pays, they will create you multiple unindexed pages to hide bad reviews while letting the reviewer believe their reviews are still active. they will create pages for individual company branches, but only make the main company page visible to people visiting the site

  9. Trustpilot is not the right place to look for reviews to get a proper idea about the company or services that you require.

  10. I have left a honest review fir a company that had scam me and even I have all the documentation to prove my claim trustpilot has removed my review because was flagged by the company. My review was polite and respectful but honest.

  11. You clearly need to look more into the subject if you belive reviews on Trustpilot are legit. There’s only one thing that matters. Money.
    And any scammer can get top ratings and get majority of negative reviews removed. Just have to pay.

  12. Seeing as my old company used to tell Trustpilot to remove negative reviews that we would tell them are ‘fake negatives’ and they gladly did as we had an Enterprise account with them, Trustpilot is as trustworthy as any review platform. All can be manipulated if you put some time into it.

  13. They remove reviews for “content integrity reasons” and ask for proofs but when proofs are offered they refuse them as “are not enough”. When a review company request a proof of a experience like they do it and then refuse it, clearly they cannot be trust it. Reviews are a mirror of an experience. Judging them and removing the one you don’t like should be punished in a frees speach world

  14. If they get paid via subscriptions then their is conflict of interest so the simple answer is No (a scam is a scam)

  15. Ths is simply wrong. The reason that Trustpilot”s reviews are intrinsically untrustworthy is as follows. Quite apart from fake good reviews and non-random sampling issues which make the data collection process statistically invalid, the problem is as follows. Good reviews stand, but bad ones are routinely objected to by the companies under review, who try and often succeed in getting them removed by various tricks. One trick is to claim no knowledge of the transaction, claiming the bad review is fake and written by ac competitor or someone with an unjustified grudge. Another is to claim that the facts in the review are false. This had happened to me several times and I’m obviously not alone. The net effect is that reviews are heavily weighted towards good ones and the worst reviews often disappear altogether. Many of those that stand are negatived in impact by untruthful responses from the company.

  16. I left one positive review for a Company. Trustpilot removed the review and refused to tell me why. Stated that their software can tell if a reviewer works for or is affiliated with the Company the review is left for. Utter rubbish as I was not. Trustpilot stated matter closed. I then deleted all 37 of my previous reviews along with my account. Trustpilot cannot be trusted if they can remove reviews for no reason with no explanation.

  17. This post is to promote Trustpilot.
    Most Trustpilot reviews are fake.
    Try to google review for the company desired or any other medium. Trustpilot made in a way where fake reviews and intended reviews to show.
    Large companies always have good rating at Trustpilot e.g. Castle Water have today good 80% 5 stars review at Trustpilot however it is ONE star google.
    I’m business owner and i know castle water is worst company i’ve come across, all my links have problems with castle water BUT trustpilot

    • All these “review” sites work the same way – Glassdoor, Tripadvisor, Yelp, Trustpilot etc. They allow people to review a product, service or company and then charge $$$ to these companies to have those negative reviews removed. Therefore they are not fair or impartial service and the reviews cannot be trusted. Their entire business model is predicated on the “it would be a shame if anything were to happen to your business” shakedown model. That’s it.

    • As someone with inside knowledge, I can tell you with full confidence that you cannot trust Trustpilot.
      Neither for good or bad reviews.
      Half the bad reviews tend to be made by customers who are total imbeciles and make a mistake, which the company is not obliged to fix at their own cost.
      Trustpilot doesn’t remove half the reviews that it should. All the customer needs to do is reply to them with any spam bs and they will count that as a complete investigation.

      Trustpilot is literally a toilet wall like Twitter, where people come to cry about the fact they have an extra chromosome.

  18. Put this in DDG: Trustpilot (Untrustworthy)

    Fake Reviews, Fake News, Fake Election, Welcome to 2021.

    Trustpilot is pay to play like Google both are totally-untrustworthy!

    • No smoke without fire?
      100% No you cannot trust
      Trustpilot.
      Or should it be called
      “Cannot Trust Pilot”?
      Interesting word “Trust”
      Your call!!
      Not worth the time of day.
      Don’t waist your time.
      End of.

      • What moderation?

  19. there are a *lot* of people who sell their review writing services. you can buy 100 reviews at a time, anything from 1-star to 5-star, for about $200.

    companies who pay trustpilot a subscription can remove negative reviews.

    so….no, you can’t (trust them)

    • Two years ago I had a bad experience with ScS Sofas. I posted a detailed review of my problem. It was removed by Trustpilot as being fake. Apparently, ScS had said I was not a customer. I offered to send TP a copy of my sales invoice proving I was a genuine customer. They refused to listen and my review was cancelled.

    • Hi there – thanks for weighing in!

      Paid reviews are definitely a problem on many platforms, including Trustpilot. We highly encourage people to be aware of this practice and be on the lookout for signs of fake reviews.

      Businesses can flag reviews for removal, but Trustpilot will only take them down if they violate user terms.

      • this is not true I’m afraid, they will take down reviews to suit their agenda.

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