How to Delete a Google Review (The Quickest, Surest Way)

This guide gives you the most complete information on how to delete a Google review the quickest and easiest way possible. Simply follow each step below. Stop following the steps as soon as you get a satisfactory resolution.

Here are the steps to follow:

Step 1) Find out if the review violates the Google review policy
Step 2) Delete a Google review that violates the Google review policy
Step 3) Turn a bad review into a good review
Step 4) Respond with the best possible damage control
Step 5) Drown out bad reviews with good reviews

Step 1) Find out if the review violates the Google review policy

The fastest, surest approach on how to delete a Google review is to flag the review as “inappropriate.” To do this, the review must violate the Google review policy.

So that you don’t have to read the entire policy and figure it out on your own, we’ve compiled a quick, easy checklist for you.

Here are the kinds of reviews the Google review policy does not allow reviewers to write:

  • Reviews that are fake
  • Reviews that are intended specifically to manipulate your Google review star ratings
  • Reviews that are “off topic,” meaning that they describe anything other than experiences that a customer has had with your business
  • Reviews that deliberately deceive or mislead readers
  • Reviews that are intended to be promotional for the reviewer, usually including calls to action such as contact info, links, or special offers
  • Reviews with illegal content, including copyrighted content
  • Reviews that incite hatred or discrimination against someone or some group
  • Reviews that threaten, bully or harass someone
  • Reviews that talk about illegal products, services or acts
  • Reviews that promote or depict violence
  • Reviews that include sexually explicit language
  • Reviews that include profane, obscene or otherwise offensive language
  • Reviews that the same person has posted more than once from multiple Google accounts
  • Reviews that misrepresent the true identity of the person who wrote them
  • Reviews that were written by your current or former employees
  • Reviews that were written by your competitors
  • Reviews that were written by you (That’s right. Don’t write reviews about your own business.)

If a reviewer has violated any of these Google review policies, continue to Step 2 for detailed instructions on how to delete a Google review.

Otherwise, you can’t delete a Google review directly. However, you may still be able to turn a bad review into a good review. Continue to Step 3 to find out how.

Step 2) Delete a Google review that violates the Google review policy

In Step 1, did you find a specific Google review policy that a bad review violates? If so, keep reading.

If not, you won’t be able to delete a Google review that doesn’t violate a policy. So continue to Step 3 instead to find out how to turn a bad review into a good review.

Flag the review as inappropriate

Still reading Step 2?

Great! Let’s learn how to delete a Google review by flagging it as “inappropriate” according to Google’s policies.

Just follow these quick, easy instructions:

  1. Log into your Google My Business account. If you have multiple locations, open the location that has the Google review to delete.
  2. Click “Reviews” from the menu. You’ll see your reviews.
  3. Click the 3-dot menu for the review to delete.
  4. Click “Flag as inappropriate” to alert Google to delete the review.

Once you’ve started the process to delete a Google review, give Google a few days to process your request.

Escalate to Google’s support team

After a few days, if the review is not deleted and Google hasn’t responded, try contacting Google to expedite. Here’s how to expedite to Google’s support team to delete a Google review:

  1. Log into your Google My Business account.
  2. In the menu on the left-hand side, click “Support.”
  3. Follow the process to speak with a Google representative.

Escalate as a legal matter

If Google’s support team decides not to delete the Google review, you have one last “nuclear option:” Escalate the review as a legal matter.

Even if Google’s support team doesn’t think a review violates their policies, you can still delete a Google review that violates the law.

A Google review may violate the law if it commits libel or slander, or if it infringes a copyright, for example.

Before you spend a fortune on lawyers to prove your case, try using Google’s legal removal request tool. You can find more information about this tool on Google’s legal removal requests page.

Get a lawyer

Still no satisfaction? If you’ve gone through all of the above steps and still haven’t been able to get Google to delete a Google review, you still have one last (but expensive) option: Get the lawyers involved.

If you’re convinced the reviewer has violated the law with the offending review, look into hiring a legal firm to pursue the case.

If you can get a judge to rule in your favor, the chance is nearly 100% that you’ll get Google to delete a Google review.

Most law firms that pursue such cases can help you communicate the judge’s order to Google, and Google normally complies very quickly.

Give up (but not entirely… only on deleting a Google review)

Still can’t get the review deleted? No judge will rule in your favor?

Then it looks like you’re out of luck.

The best you can hope for is to turn lemons into lemonade.

Continue to Step 3 to find out how to turn a bad review into a good one instead of learning how to delete a Google review.

Step 3) Turn a bad review into a good review

If you can’t get Google to delete a Google review, your next best bet is to turn a bad review into a good review.

Speed is critical. The more time that goes by, the harder it will be to turn an unhappy customer into a happy customer.

Use some sort of review monitoring tool to make sure you find out quickly whenever you have new reviews, so you can respond quickly to any negative reviews while there’s still a chance to turn things around. We offer free review monitoring if you need it.

Contact the reviewer. Apologize for their bad experience. Ask questions to figure out the core problem that has made the reviewer so unhappy. Figure out a solution. Ask the reviewer if your solution would turn them from an unhappy customer into a happy customer. If so, do it!

Only after you’ve turned an unhappy customer into a happy customer, ask politely if the customer would please update their review. Don’t pressure the customer in any way, or you may turn a bad review into a worse review.

Make it as easy as possible for the customer to update their review. If it’s even slightly difficult for the customer to edit the review, your chances of getting the review changed go down dramatically.

Give the customer a user-friendly google review link by using our Google review link generator. This free tool gives you a link that will take your customer directly to their existing review of your business, including the text they wrote previously. All they have to do is change the text and star rating and click the “Post” button.

If you’re unable to turn a bad review into a good review, continue to Step 4.

Step 4) Respond with the best possible damage control

Still reading? So sorry. You should only still be reading if you haven’t been able either to delete a Google review or to turn a bad review into a good review. Keep reading. All is not lost.

Negative reviews are a fact of life in our modern digital age. You’re not the only one with negative reviews, and you certainly won’t be the last.

You still have a powerful weapon available to you: A response that demonstrates extreme customer commitment.

The single most important idea to keep in mind when responding to a negative review is this: The future customers who will read your response matter far more than the negative reviewer matters.

For specific details and examples on how to respond to a negative review like a master, check out Chapter 6 (“How to Respond to Negative Google Reviews”) of the Ultimate Guide on How to Get Google Reviews.

Then continue to Step 5.

Step 5) Drown out bad reviews with good reviews

They say an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. That’s certainly true for negative reviews.

For every 1-star review your business gets, you need 7 new 5-star reviews just to bring your overall average up to 4.5 stars. So preventing that 1-star review is literally worth more than 7 new 5-star reviews.

You may be surprised at how simple it is to get lots of good reviews and prevent bad reviews.

To summarize, the key to drowning out bad reviews with lots of good reviews is this…

Pre-screen as many customers as possible!

Reach out to as many customers as possible. Pre-screen them by asking how you did. Specifically, ask how they would rate you on a 5-star scale.

Then encourage reviews from a customer only after you know the customer will give an above-average star rating.

When a customer says they would rate you below your current average star rating, don’t encourage a Google review. Instead ask for feedback on how you could improve your business to earn a 5-star review in the future.

For more details on how to do this effectively, take a look at Chapter 4 (“The Surprisingly Simple Key to Success with Google Reviews”) of the Ultimate Guide on How to Get Google Reviews.

Summary

You can get Google to delete a Google review if it violates their policies or the law. (See above for details on how to delete a Google review.)

If you can’t delete a Google review, you may be able to turn the reviewer into a happy customer and get them to change their bad review into a good one.

Failing that, you may still be able to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. See above to learn how to respond to a negative review in a way that will win over countless future customers. Demonstrate to them that you’re truly committed to your customers.

Whatever you do to “fix” a negative review, the ultimate solution is to drown out negative reviews with positive reviews. You can do this by making customers happy and then pre-screening them before encouraging reviews.