Is It Possible to Leave an Anonymous Google Review?

Last updated: February 28, 2022

When you’re looking for a business to provide a service, the internet is a great place to start your search. You can find all sorts of reviews of businesses on Google, Yelp, and other review platforms. When you’re searching for a business on Google, it’s common to see reviews from past customers. But what happens when you want to write a review yourself, without attaching your name, specifically on Google?

You might be thinking of writing an anonymous Google review and want to know if it’s possible. The answer to that question isn’t so straightforward to answer, so continue reading to find out if you can still post an anonymous Google review. 

Is It Possible to Leave an Anonymous Review?

The short answer to this question is no, it is no longer possible to leave a truly anonymous Google review. To explain why, we need to take a look at what an anonymous Google review is, and go over some basic history. 

Before 2013, anyone was able to leave a review without needing to log in to a Google account, and the review was posted anonymously. While this was great for customers who didn’t want to be named, it wasn’t so great for businesses because there were a few problems associated with doing this. 

What Happened to the Reviews?

As mentioned above, by being able to leave anonymous reviews, problems were created for businesses. One of the biggest problems was the fact that any business could leave a review for another business. For example, Business A could spam many different negative reviews for Business B, decreasing the possibility people would visit them after reading the reviews. More than this, business could also write fake reviews about themselves, making themselves seem better than they were. 

Of course, in the interest of protecting businesses and offering a great service, Google made a few changes to anonymous reviews. In 2013, Google made it necessary to sign into Google+ in order to leave a review. Now reviews would show up as “a Google user”, but that didn’t stop users from creating multiple accounts. This led to Google finally removing the ability to leave anonymous reviews in June 2018.

Did That Affect Businesses?

The good news is that now it is much more difficult to leave anonymous Google reviews, the bad news is that with the removal of anonymous Google reviews, the average rating of many businesses actually dropped. Keep in mind that many people didn’t only leave negative anonymous reviews, and businesses that had curated a great collection of positive reviews with now only left with a few. 

Not all of this is negative however. Statistics show that around 54% of Googler users think they have a fake review at least once, and about 25% think they have read a few. Whether these reviews are good or bad, since almost every Google user will read a review before using a product, these anonymous reviews severely affected the trust economy. 

How to Leave an Anonymous Google Review

Even though it isn’t possible to leave a completely anonymous Google review, you can still leave reviews without the business knowing your name, and you can also leave a review with using your Gmail account. 

The first method is quite simple and easy to do. All you need to do is to visit your Google account, and then click on the option “Manage your Google Account”. From there, you will want to click on “Personal Info”, and then you should see a page with your first name and last name. Now, you can either just remove your last name, which will still make the review seem credible, or you can choose a nickname, or simply use “Anonymous” as your name. Keep in mind that business can flag your review if they notice that you aren’t using your real name. 

The second method involves using Google Maps. To use this method, open Google Maps and create a Google account. During this process, just click “Use my current email address instead”, which will open the map. Then search for the name of the business on Google Maps. Once you have found it, you can leave a review.