Online reviews are a phenomenon that has become a part of almost any money transaction on the internet. You can write and read reviews for any product on Amazon – as trivial as a doorstopper. Products, services, neighbourhoods, recipes, doctors, you name it – if you can pay for it, it likely has a place where users share their reviews. Ever since the early 2000s, this has become a big factor in the relocation industry. Movers are now held accountable for how well they do their job, but with so many sources of information, which reviews for moving companies are the most trustworthy?
CityMove Verified Reviews is a unique system unlike any other. You can see users’ feedback to movers in different categories, as well as general information related to the move that was completed. All of our reviews are authentic, as only confirmed bookings through the CityMove system are able to leave a review. Here are some main categories of reviews you can find online, and the reasons why they are not as trustworthy as CityMove’s.
Public Mover Reviews
There are many websites where people can simply leave their feedback anonymously. These review aggregators serve little value to you, the customer, as any moving company can leave reviews for themselves. It also can mean competitors can leave reviews for each other. A company can be started yesterday and have no actual accountability, yet have hundreds of reviews on sites where there is no login wall, or the login wall only requires a valid email address. Examples of this include yellowpages.com or movingreviews.com.
Google reviews represent a step up from public reviews, as you do need to have a valid Google account to leave one. Unfortunately, creating a Gmail account only takes a few minutes and there are little checks in place to verify the identity. Despite how much effort Google has redirected to push their own reviews on their search results, there is a ton of content that is not that valuable. There are people who make a business out of leaving Google reviews, and until Google Local adds a filter or additional checks to prevent fake reviews for movers, this source also has to be treated with a grain of salt.
Websites such as Yelp represent a big step up from the previous generation of review websites. According to their website, they have an algorithm in place which filters reviews that seem less trustworthy. This has been a revolutionary feature of Yelp, and a fantastic tool for customers. As Yelp has become more and more popular moving services actually being one of the top earners for them. As it is with most business aspects, people made it their job to figure out how to get a business to 5 stars on Yelp. Some methods involve just aggressive solicitation for reviews, but others resort to gaming Yelp’s algorithm to their advantage. Websites like these also bring in a ton of money from advertising. As of this writing (November 2019), Yelp will push 10 sponsored results (not top-rated results) to a “Movers” search, before showing you the first organic result. This means that the first 10 moving companies to get in front of you paid to get there, rather than get ranked #1 thanks to having the best reviews. Even when you do click on an organic result and want to message the mover, they will once again ask you if you want to send the same message to many other movers – most or all of which will be sponsored. Overall, this is a good way to find reviews, but it can be better!
Introducing CityMove Verified Reviews
Citymove has been around since 2003, and the website has had over 30,000 review submissions in the New York City area for moving companies. As early as 2009, Citymove reviews started to get filtered based on a complicated system of checks preventing self-review by companies, and often removing reviews and even banning companies from operating on the site if caught.
In 2018, Citymove made another leap and removed all mover reviews on the site that were not tied to a confirmed booking through CityMove. As of 2019, only reviews tied to a specific moving job, booked through the platform are used to calculate a mover’s score. For example, a recent review from the end of October can be found here (https://www.citymove.com/reviews/18626). The person’s private information is hidden from the public (name, phone number, email and exact move location), but the review is internally verified to be valid.
Move details can help you place more weight on the right reviews. The great thing about Citymove Verified Reviews is that other users on the platform can see the scope and location of the job which can help you place more weight on reviews left for moves that are similar to the move you are planning for yourself. In the example above, it was a small move booked for $235 involving only a few items. If you have a small move, this may be very helpful to you. If you have a big move, or a long-distance move, you may want to look for a mover review that is more similar to the type of job you are looking to book when comparing different movers on the platform. There are no sponsored bids or mover pages on CityMove, so you can be certain that movers with the best reviews are their thanks to merit.