This Free Tool Can Help You Spot Fake Amazon And Yelp Reviews

Shopping online takes a lot of trust.

When it comes to clothing, you’re not sure how it will fit. With appliances or electronics, you want to make sure you’re getting the best product for your money, especially if you’re dropping some serious cash.

That’s where reviews can help on sites like Amazon and Yelp, which you likely hit up to read the thoughts of other customers before trying a new restaurant. Sometimes, however, reviews can be fake — either posted by the company itself or by someone who was given something in exchange for writing a positive review. While they may say the review is not biased even though they got free merchandise, it can be hard to be sure.

Getty Images | Quinn Rooney

A tool called Fakespot aims to help with this dilemma by using algorithms to spot “fake” reviews.

Here’s how it works.

First, simply copy the link to an Amazon product or Yelp business and paste it into the box at Within just a few seconds, you’ll get a report card of sorts regarding the reviews — they use letter grades like the ones you got in school.

Take a look at what Fakespot came up with for a product I randomly clicked on:


Aside from just letting me know 90 percent of the reviews could be trusted, it also broke the reviews down further, giving the total number of reviews, the fact that the word used most by reviewers was “comfortable” and that it was also described as sturdy, great, perfect and good.


The best part I found so far (aside from the fact that it’s free) is that all of this information was available within a few seconds. Considering there were 1,752 total reviews on the product, picking out the most commonly used word in all the reviews was exceptionally helpful!

So if you’re a big fan of reading reviews, you might want to consider using this free tool next time, just to see what you can learn. It’s certainly interesting!

How do you use reviews to make decisions?

About the Author

Kaitlin Gates

Kaitlin is a freelance multimedia journalist with a degree in journalism and psychology. Along with Don't Waste Your Money, she also writes for Simplemost, where she covers new product and food launches and overall general news. You can email her at or find her on Facebook at More.

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