Can you trust online product reviews?

(NC) Online shopping is convenient in so many ways, and when you can’t see the product in person, online reviews often seem like the best way to get a sense of the item.

However, it’s important to stay skeptical when reading online reviews. Many are paid endorsements where the reviewer has no knowledge of the product and simply got paid to say something positive.  Also, be wary of endorsements from social media influencers – their reviews may not be genuine. As for celebrity endorsements: images of famous people are often used without their consent to encourage you to buy.

To get the most use out of online reviews, consult multiple sources for the bigger picture. Look for reviews that cover a wide range of time and ignore both the highest and lowest ratings, since these can be misleading.

If a product has received lots of great reviews all of a sudden, a new profile has been actively writing positive reviews of several products in a short period of time or the positivity level seems way too high, then you might want to keep scrolling.

Overall, even though online reviews can be helpful, make sure to take them with a grain of salt.

Find more information and report fake online reviews at competitionbureau.gc.ca.

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