Category: tips

Google Maps: how review moderation works

In this article, we are going to learn how Google moderates and fights inappropriate content on Maps.

Today, online reviews are an integral part of the purchasing and consumption process of Internet users. In fact, according to the European Consumer Centre France (ECC), nearly 90% of consumers rely on online customer reviews before ordering a product or booking a service.

At the same time, the growth of online reviews generates numerous frauds: false positive reviews, negative reviews published by competitors, deletion of negative reviews… Customer review platforms must therefore be more vigilant. Google, which publishes reviews via Google Maps, now explains the moderation process of this continuous flow of information.

Strict rules imposed by Google

In order to fight against abusive content published by Internet users, Google has established a strict policy, which may change depending on the societal context (such as the pandemic or the presidential elections).

The rules dictated by the Mountain View firm have two main objectives:

  • The opinions must be based on real experiences,
  • Illegal, irrelevant or disrespectful comments should not be published.

Types of reviews that violate Google’s policies

Google has published a list of the types of reviews that violate these policies:

  • deliberately false content and spam,
  • copied or stolen photos,
  • off-topic reviews,
  • defamatory language,
  • personal attacks,
  • unnecessary or incorrect content.

It should also be noted that these rules apply to all user-generated content, namely

  • the texts of reviews,
  • notes,
  • images and videos,
  • questions and answers,
  • captions,
  • hashtags,
  • tags,
  • links,
  • metadata.

Google uses a machine learning system to moderate reviews

To facilitate the management of abusive reviews, Google uses an automatic moderation system that supports the teams in charge of this mission.

As we receive a large number of reviews, we realized that we needed both human analysis, for the finesse of its evaluation, but also machine learning, for its capacity in terms of volume.

The machine learning system is therefore able to identify repeating patterns and remove undesirable content before it is even online, thus reducing the workload of the teams involved.

The machine learning system evaluates several factors:

  • the content: the algorithm analyzes whether the content is prohibited or subject to possible restrictions, based on the rules defined by Google,
  • the account: the system checks the user’s profile, and detects potential suspicious activities,
  • the location: the machine learning tool inspects the number of reviews received in a defined period of time, and whether this establishment has already encouraged users to publish false reviews, via social networks or the press in particular.

If the algorithms do not detect any violations, Google says the review can be posted in just a few seconds.

Google encourages users to report malicious reviews

Even if the moderation system by automatic learning is constantly optimized, it sometimes happens that an inappropriate review slips through the net. To address this issue, Google makes it easy for users to report reviews.

If the review concerns your establishment, simply go to the dedicated help page, which allows you to manage your reviews as well as your removal requests. As a consumer, you can also report a review that is deemed inappropriate.

In addition to the deletion of the malicious review, its author is exposed to two risks: to see his account suspended, and to be subject to legal proceedings.

What is a graphic charter and what is its purpose?

The graphic charter is related to the visual identity of a company/brand.

It is a document that will include all the graphic elements related to your site with a guide for using the various visual elements.

This includes the logo, its use, its variation, the fonts, their sizes, their weights, the color palette, etc.

The objective of the graphic charter is to ensure harmony between the various communication media. This does not only concern the website but all the media around the brand:

  • The print (all printed materials used in marketing), such as flyers, business cards, brochures and leaflets, envelopes and correspondence paper, etc.
  • The supports for the events, such as the shows, kakemonos, stand, covers, goodies, etc.
  • This also includes digital media: email signatures, PowerPoint presentations, visuals used on social networks or in newsletters, etc.
  • There are many examples, but to summarize, it is everything that requires the work of a graphic designer.

All these elements allow to identify a company and to enhance its brand image.

The components of a good graphic charter

Focus on the different elements that make up a graphic charter:

  • There is of course the logo, which is the strongest and most distinguishable element of an identity. The charter will specify how the logo should be used: its size, the protection zone (or neutrality) to be kept around it, the colors and possible variations, on a white background, black background, in black and white, etc. There are different types of logos: typographic like Coca-Cola for example, with a whole word or an acronym for that matter, illustrative like Apple, a pictogram like Twitter, we can imagine a mascot like Michelin, an emblem like Ford, something more abstract like adidas, or a combination of several elements. The possibilities are endless.
  • Next comes the typography or font. Here, it’s best to keep it simple with one main font for text and a secondary one for headlines; too many fonts will hurt readability/consistency in any case. The fonts must be readable! And let’s forget about the comic without MS…
  • With the logo come the colors that will identify the universe of the brand. There are sites that can help you create a harmonious color palette. On the graphic chart, the color codes can be indicated in different ways: quadrichrome, pantone, RGB or web.
  • A site without photographs would be a bit sad! The photos are also part of the charter, as well as the illustrations. That’s why we have written about this subject so that you can find free and royalty-free images on the internet.
  • There are also pictograms and small visual elements used in addition such as arrows, buttons, favicon, etc.
  • The graphic charter details how all these elements must coexist to form a harmonious whole. It also specifies what is forbidden.

As you can see, a graphic charter is essential in a communication strategy. Depending on the size of your company or your sector of activity, you will not necessarily be concerned by all types of support. Start with the ones that will be most useful to you right away.

Weareobeo can help you carry out your graphic design project; do not hesitate to contact our graphic design team.

How to clear the WordPress cache

It’s a good idea to have a caching plugin on your WordPress website and we explain why in this new article.

What is the cache of a website?

The purpose of the cache is to store data temporarily, to load web pages faster from a browser. It is a storage space dedicated to this purpose.

What data is stored in the cache? Static data such as images, HTML, Javascript, CSS.

Ultimately, the cache will optimize the loading speed of the site. This results in a better user experience (Ux) and the sending of positive signals to search engines and the natural referencing of the website. Google indeed gives importance to the loading speed of a site.

Why empty the cache of his website?

On a website, the cache is emptied so that changes made to the administration interface of the site are visible online.

The cache system stores a version of the files at a time T and gives them back to the users. If an administrator makes changes that affect these files and does not empty the cache, the old files will always be restored. The changes will therefore not be visible online. Clearing the cache allows you to store new versions of files to be restored.

Note that this operation is done by the owner of the website.

How to empty the cache of your WordPress site?

If you don’t have plugins allowing you to manage the cache for your website, this point doesn’t concern you. This second step can be done if you have a plugin in place. Several extensions allow to have a caching of the pages of the site.

Let’s take WP Rocket for example. It is a paid extension but not all of them are. When the plugin is activated, in one click, the cache is emptied.

You can often find an option like “Clear Cache” in the settings of your WordPress site in the plugin settings.

Here are other plugins that allow you to do this: WP Super Cache, Litespeed Cache, W3 Total Cache, or WP Fastest Cache.

Even if it seems obvious, you should only install one cache module on your website.

What is the browser cache?

It is different from the cache system present on the website as described above. Browsers also store information when you surf on websites. And sometimes these web browsers do not detect the changes that have been made on the site.

How to empty the cache on a browser?

This action can be performed regardless of the browser used; Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Edge, to name only the most popular.

Unlike the website cache, which is emptied by its owner, the browser cache must be emptied by the user.

To empty the cache on Chrome, for example

  • click on “More tools
  • and then on “Delete browsing data”.

You now know what the different types of cache are and why they are important for displaying up-to-date information on websites.

Don’t hesitate to contact our team if you want to entrust the optimization of your website to a professional.

7 reasons to redesign your website

It is generally said that a website becomes obsolete after 4 or 5 years. The web domain is in constant evolution, graphically and technically. An aging website can no longer meet the needs of the company, the expectations of Internet users and search engines. It is therefore strategic to update it in order to propose a functional, modern and unique site.

However, this decision is not trivial. It requires significant work and must bring a real benefit to the company. Here are 8 reasons that can help determine if a website needs a redesign.

1- The graphic design of the website is outdated

When browsing the website of your competitors, you may have the impression that your website is graphically outdated, that it gives your company an unmodern image. Some companies abandon their site over the years. A visual redesign is therefore necessary. A web professional specialized in redesigns will propose the following axes :

  • definition of the need,
  • layout,
  • graphic integration,
  • development,
  • addition of content,
  • work on your SEO.

2- The site is not well positioned in search results

SEO, also known as search engine optimization, must be a subject addressed from the first stages of the creation or redesign of a site. If this was not the case, it is likely that many optimizations are still possible on the website to better position the keywords in search engines.

There are simple solutions to improve the search engine optimization of a site (optimization of title tags and meta descriptions), but sometimes it will be necessary to consider heavier measures. Because SEO is partly linked to the technical performance of a site. Consequently, a poorly structured site will be strongly penalized. A redesign can therefore be really beneficial for SEO.

3- The structure of the site no longer meets your needs

In addition to no longer meeting the expectations of users, an outdated website also no longer meets the needs of the company. A company evolves with time and its products or services have probably evolved as well.

To solve this problem, a work of analysis and redesign of the tree structure and contents is necessary. A website with outdated content creates a gap between the commercial discourse of a company and the perception that customers have of it.

4- The site does not adapt to mobile formats

The site is functional on the computer but does not display well on mobile devices? Today, more than half of the users browse the internet from their phone or tablet, and this trend is growing year after year. It is therefore essential to offer users a version of the site adapted to the mobile support, in order to guarantee them a good experience, whatever the format of the screen consulted. This advice is also taken up by the American giant Google, which gives more prominence in search results to websites designed to offer a good user experience on a smartphone.

Mobile user experience

5- The site lacks functionality

The graphic, technical, SEO and responsive aspects must be worked on in order to make a site efficient. But to reach the set objectives and maximize performance, a site must also include practical features, which, in addition to offering a more pleasant experience to users, can help differentiate it from competitors. These are for example a blog, contact forms, the declination of the site in different languages, the creation of a private personal space or the tracking of orders in the case of an e-commerce site.

6- The site is complicated to administer by yourself

Some websites are difficult to administer from a technical or financial point of view if the web service provider invoices all modifications requested by the customer, for a simple change of text or the setting on line of a new article of blog for example.

Not having control over your content is a good reason to redesign your website. The idea is to be trained by the provider to be able to manage the content of your website yourself. The WordPress CMS offers for example a very intuitive administration interface, easy to learn.

7- User experience and conversion rates are not optimized

UX/UI design is a “discipline” that has become very popular in recent years. It is about optimizing the user experience on the website in order to increase the efficiency of the website. The user finds immediately the content he is looking for and the company optimizes its sales.

This is done through different actions :

  • flattening the tree structure to optimize the hierarchy of the pages/information
  • adding call-to-actions and links
  • optimizing the design
  • setting up animations that make reading more fun
  • improvement of the quality of images and videos
  • work on the purchase tunnel for e-commerce sites
  • rewriting texts for more clarity

All these actions will ultimately aim to increase the conversion rate.

If you check several of these boxes, it may be time to contact a qualified web agency to assist you in the redesign of your website.