Yet One More Reason That Agents Should Not Feed The ZILLOW Monster

By
Real Estate Agent with Fairfax Realty

Stop Zillow

I am tremendously grateful to clients that take time from their busy days to endorse and recommend me to others. It is a fantastic feeling knowing that my help was appreciated and that clients think enough of me to help my business to grow.

Just this year 2018 three of my recent clients have told me that they have submitted testimonials for me on the Z Monster. But none of these reviews have ever appeared. So I contacted support at Zillow and inquired as to why. Here is their reply:


 

"Hi Dave,

The review you were expecting from xxxxxxx@x.com seems to have been rejected. Zillow runs every single review that is submitted past a human being. Why? Zillow Group likes to ensure the review complies with our Review Policies and Guidelines — to maintain integrity of the review system and to reduce potential gaming. Yes, sad as it sounds, the simple fact is there are agents out there that try to submit fake reviews on their behalf, and to a lesser extent, fake reviews taking digs at competitors.

While we can't give specifics on why the review is rejected, we can share commons reasons why the review may have been rejected.

•    The review doesn’t contain enough information to be useful to others. What we are looking for are reviews that will provide value to both the consumer and the agent being reviewed. Explain why or how an agent helped, not just that they were helpful.

•    The review is self-promoting or it has contact information for the reviewer, this relates to the first reason as we want to make sure they highlight you as the agent.

•    They submitted a review from an office or public computer. Unfortunately, while it is convenient to tell a client in your office, “Just walk over there to that bank of computers and submit your review now, while you are thinking of it,” using an office or publicly accessible computer to submit multiple reviews is a tactic often employed by spammers and gamers. We suggest that you ask your clients to submit reviews from their own computers, away from your office.

Please note, the reviewer has the ability to check the status of their review, edit and resubmit it at any time. I have also included a link to our review guidelines below.

http://www.zillow.com/wikipages/Review-Guidelines/ 

If you have any additional questions or concerns, please let us know.

Thanks and have a good rest of your day!

Chris Smith"


This is NOT just about the negative impact this has on Realtors it is also very much one more way that Zillow is deceiving and harming the public. Most of the public believe that Zillow is providing information to help them make decisions. In reality by BLOCKING legitimate reviews (for subjective i.e. you aren't paying them to advertise for you) they are MISLEADING the public. It is interesting to note just how many interesting reviews the agents that are paying them have lol. 

 

Basically what Zillow is saying is that they can reject reviews for ANY reason at all including completely subjective ones. "The review doesn’t contain enough information to be useful to others." What we are looking for are reviews that will provide value to both the consumer and the agent being reviewed. Explain why or how an agent helped, not just that they were helpful." I do notice however that "Premier Agents"  i.e. those that pay ridiculous amounts of money to them for leads. Regularly have extremely uninformative or meaningless reviews. So there would appear to be a large double standard going on at #Zillow and it's just one more reason to not FEED THE MONSTER.

Some other resources to look at:

GREG HAGUE Plan To Save Real Estate

Stop Zillow On Facebook


 

To protect your interests and make certain that you make the best decisions possible, it's important that you have an experienced and knowledgeable real estate agent that has your best interests at heart.

We are committed to keep you informed and on top of the local Northern Virginia real estate market. You can be certain that we will provide all the information you need to make the best choices for you and your family; even when that best choice is to do nothing. We have been helping individuals, couples and families to purchase and sell homes in Fairfax, Alexandria and the surrounding areas of Northern Virginia for the last four decades and we would love the opportunity to help you too. Whether you are buying your first dream home or next we will take the time to answer all your questions and always give you the best advice available so that you can make your dream home a reality.

More Real Estate Tips

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Home Buying Strategies

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Rainmaker
4,643,476
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy

David,

I had no idea they did that.  Sounds like their motto is "you pay the money, you get the honey!"  LOL A

Mar 09, 2018 11:09 AM #1
Ambassador
2,938,750
Anna Banana Kruchten Broker/Owner, CRB, CRS
Phoenix Property Shoppe - Phoenix, AZ
602-380-4886

Wow David that isn't sounding good. I can imagine your clients are not happy about that.

Mar 09, 2018 02:26 PM #2
Ambassador
1,926,946
Hannah Williams
Re/Max Eastern inc. - Philadelphia, PA
Expertise NE Philadelphia & Bucks 215-953-8818

David Martin  well well well what a surprise .   Pay to be a premire agent or your reviews do not appear ... How sad is that ?   Can not believe that the had answered you like that ...

Mar 09, 2018 06:51 PM #3
Rainmaker
3,042,236
James Dray
Fathom Realty - Bentonville, AR
Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results

Morning David,

Nothing short of a double standard.  Hmm, class action civil suit in store?

Mar 10, 2018 02:13 AM #4
Ambassador
1,936,650
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

That's too bad, but it doesn't surprise me in the least.  Sadly.  D

Mar 10, 2018 07:14 AM #5
Rainmaker
2,635,291
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

Sounds like "Z" is more interested in collecting money than providing reviews for consumer interest.

Mar 10, 2018 07:21 AM #6
Rainmaker
1,404,050
Carol Williams
Although I'm retired, I love sharing my knowledge and learning from other real estate industry professionals. - Wenatchee, WA
Retired Agent / Broker / Property Manager

Disappointing!  They are more interested in money than providing a valuable service. That is without question. There Zestimates are a total joke... and, apparently, so are their reviews.

Mar 10, 2018 10:19 AM #7
Anonymous
Yevette Jessen

Funny “policy” coming from Zillow since their sales reps endorse and instruct agents on how to get fake reviews!!

Mar 10, 2018 04:03 PM #8
Rainmaker
1,404,050
Carol Williams
Although I'm retired, I love sharing my knowledge and learning from other real estate industry professionals. - Wenatchee, WA
Retired Agent / Broker / Property Manager

Congratulations!  Your post is Featured in BananaTude

Mar 11, 2018 07:46 PM #9
Rainmaker
1,746,848
Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker in DC, MD, VA and attorney in DC

this is very disappointing - with everyone's busy schedule it is sad to think that a client takes the time to write a review and then it doesn't pass muster! 

Mar 17, 2018 04:56 AM #10
Rainmaker
1,148,225
Joyce Marsh
Regal | Christie's International Real Estate - Ormond Beach, FL
Regal Christie's International Real Estate

I have had many clients try to post reviews on zillow and told me they were unsuccessful and gave up.  Now I know what may have happened.  I told them how much I appreciated them taking the time out to try to post a review even though it was never actually published on zillow.  

Mar 17, 2018 05:02 AM #11
Ambassador
2,259,811
Wanda Kubat-Nerdin - Wanda Can!
Prado Real Estate South - St. George, UT
So Utah Residential, Referral & Relocation REALTOR

Interesting post David! I received an email instructing me how to get my listings on Zillow (?)...also on the same line, I had a listing on their site and the square footage was incorrect, putting it at a disadvantage. They refused to change it! Zillow has no place in my business. Congrats on making Carol Williams Second Chance Saturday list and being featured on BananaTude's!

Mar 17, 2018 08:59 AM #12
Ambassador
4,108,817
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Hi David

Thanks for sharing this - I had no idea Z did this but it does not surprise me. Make we wonder if others who have submitted reviews for me were not successful. I just had a call from them yesterday about being a premier agent...nope, no thanks.

Jeff

Mar 17, 2018 03:21 PM #13
Rainmaker
1,493,504
Kat Palmiotti
406-270-3667, kat@thehousekat.com, Broker, Blackstone Realty Group - brokered by eXp Realty - Kalispell, MT
The House Kat

I didn't realize this either. I can understand reviews being reviewed to make sure there's no bad language, and it's not an evidently fake review, but to reject because it's not "useful?" If it's positive, it's useful to both buyers/sellers and the agent.

Mar 18, 2018 03:14 AM #14
Rainer
24,643
Jonathan Bowen
Hub Edge Realty - Stoughton, MA
Advice. Education. Guidance.

The number of people feigning ignorance here is frustrating. Of course Zillow manipulates reviews for its own benefit! You should not be asking for reviews on any site but your own... You don't have a site? You have issues with your site? Fine. The only reasonable third-party site wherein you should be asking for reviews is LinkedIn because you, as real estate agents, are professionals. Shocking, right? Gah!

Mar 18, 2018 09:24 AM #15
Rainmaker
1,212,797
Jay Thompson
Zillow - Seattle, WA

Jay from Zillow Group here. There are more than 3 million reviews of real estate agents and over 500,000 reviews of mortgage professionals on Zillow. The vast majority of them on agents and lenders that don't pay us a dime. 

Your claim that we give preferential treatement to paying customers is 100% incorrect. 

It's certainly not a secret that we moderate reviews. It's published all over the site, and supporting sites, and has been for years. 

https://zillow.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/228459868-Where-is-my-review-

https://www.zillow.com/agent-resources/trends-and-data/tips-and-advice/why-reviews-sometimes-get-rejected/

Mar 19, 2018 03:46 PM #16
Rainmaker
401,523
John Wiley
Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

Zillow makes a lot of claims about their operation that is not accurate.

They are not for the consumer, they are for making money off of agents.

Thanks for sharing another reason that we need to be aware of.

Mar 26, 2018 09:17 AM #17
Rainmaker
462,439
Michael Eisenberg
eXp Realty - Bellingham, WA
Bellingham Real Estate Guy

Yelp is even worse, they are always calling me asking me to spend money  advertising on their site. They have 4 hedden reviews from my past clients that left positive reviews, but they aren't regular Yelp users so they consider them unreliable.

Apr 08, 2018 05:53 PM #18
Rainmaker
319,610
Jeff Fisher
RE/MAX Fine Properties - Scottsdale, AZ
RE/MAX Fine Properties

I'm curious, what happened to the Stop Zillow movement? What happened to the money raised by Hague? There was a lot of self propmation, articles and even interview, but no results. Were the donations to the cause returned?

Aug 14, 2019 06:04 PM #40
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Dave Martin (703) 585-4687

Making Realty Dreams a Reality #WeWillGetYouHome
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