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Successfully Evaluating Online Reviews


Person looking at reviews on phone


Welcome back to the Fieldstone Farm Blog. Last month we shared tips for how to write a review of our Odenton, Maryland apartment community. This time we want to follow-up with a post about how to effectively evaluate online reviews. Whether you are looking for recommendations for a venue to hold a special event, you want to find out which flat-screen TV is the best, or you are looking for the best pizza joint in town, online reviews are your friend. Use our tips to rate them.


Evaluating Online Reviews

It’s no secret that reviews can range from helpful to ridiculous with everything in between. Cut to the chase and glean the information you need by following these tips:

  • Look for common themes among multiple reviews. If several people are saying the same thing, it’s more likely to be legitimate.

  • Prioritize the content. Focus on the reviews that are most relative to YOUR top concerns. Take an apartment review for example, if you don’t care if there is a specific amenity that isn’t  important to you, disregard reviews about that specific amenity.

  • Take reviews that resort to name-calling and hyperbole with a grain of salt, particularly reviews that resort to vulgarity — these could be a case of sour grapes.

  • Read the overall tone of the reviews — are they mostly positive or negative. Throw out reviews — both negative and positive — that are excessive and do not contain facts, details, and balance.

  • Note reviews that are well written with clear language, proper spelling, and grammar which indicates care was taken to present an honest opinion.

  • Consider what your purpose is for the product and service and take that into consideration as you evaluate reviews. Just because someone else didn’t like a product or situation doesn’t mean it won’t work just fine for your purposes.

  • Be aware that there may be false reviews among the legitimate ones that can be used to inflate or discredit whatever is being reviewed. Take time to learn how to spot a fake apartment review (these tips apply to most other types of reviews too).


We hope these tips will help you the next time you need to make a big purchase, find a great Airbnb for vacation, or order a new service! Thanks for taking time to read our blog post today.