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back to article Is iFlorist the greatest website in the universe, ever?

It's come to our attention that there's a bit of a ding-dong going down at Trustpilot as to whether online flower outfit iFlorist is the greatest company ever to do business on the interwebs or, well, not. Here's a random selection of reviews: Negative review for iFlorist Positive review for iFlorist Mixed reviews for …

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duh.. blatant self promotion

I guess their Customer service's bonus depends on average rating.. so they keep writing absolutely fake self loving reviews... Which customer writes "deliver in 140 countires..." ughhh.

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FAIL

Will never ever buy from these ppl

Thank Reg for pointing out another Sham Bollocks website.. Next cant even deliver to London so what hope do these people think they can!

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There are some problems with your post.

Perhaps Trustpilot could borrow our esteemed Moderatix for a few days, slap a bit of sense into them... :o)

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FAntastics service!!!!

EL reg is best site on the whole internets for news sources and the day's issue's! Thast really fnatastic story and good reportings from the best teams on the whoel net!!!!!

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FAIL

Had a spare 5 mins...

... rated them 1.

If anyone else can be bothered, it's always good to restore the balance, even though it does show trustpilot ... erm, can't be trusted... ;)

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Nice

So you're combating fake positive reviews by posting fake negative reviews? Nice.

Do you actually *believe* everything you read here?

Yay for mob rule!

(PS: you just committed libel.)

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Slightly obvious.

Not only do the positive reviews contain the grammar and spelling of an alcoholic teenager, but they read like spin pumped out by a PR droid.

I can only assume the PR droid in question has been outsourced to India.

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Brilliant...

...the 1st good one seems to be written in that type of English unique to Nigeria and the 2nd, well, talk about a press release cut n paste.

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FAIL

Oh yeah

It's a coincidence that they've had loads of great reviews after taking on what would appear to be an Indian PR company. Yeah, pure coincidence.

How companies think they can get away with it in this day and age boggles the mind.

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FAIL

Very good Register

Im very happy, only good register writes such good article. I hope for very long time register does many business and continue to be strong company. iFlorist.co.uk is clearly a very upstanding and legitimate company, I buy all my things from them now.

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I'm sure

That these people appreciate the £1.50 a day for filling in random 5 star reviews. It's indoors so they can warm up between bouts of selling the Big Issue.

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Whatever next?

Shocker!

At this rate we'll have film advertisements that only include good reviews, book promotions: likewise. "Customer surveys" where 8 out of 10 cat-owners ... and websites that delete bad feedback posts.

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Damning with fake praise

Could be a competitor.

Has to be easier to produce obvious fake good comments rather than convincing bad comments.

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Heart

this is not on-topic

but it is helpful. OH is in the floristry biz. If you want to deliver flowers to someone, don't go through Interflora or any of the big websites and order a Red Rose Arrangement #45. The website's commission will suck up money that could be spent on flowers, and then ordering off the fixed menu (which has no relationship to the flowers that are in season, in stock and look good) won't guarantee you decent results.

Better approach: find a florist in the town you want to deliver to, check a couple of reviews and then call them up and say "I've got X quid to spend, what fresh and good-looking stock do you have in that you can deliver?". A decent florist will advise you on what's looking good and will have the best impact, and it'll be cheaper bc you're cutting out the middleman.

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Untrusting?

Perhaps, rather than questioning iFlorist, you should talk to TrustPilot. It does rather look like someone is trying to game the system.

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Gav
Heart

greatest website in the universe ever

This is report is all lies. I can't believe that people would be so cynical to believe that companies would attempt to manipulate dumb review forums.

iFlorist saved my life. Reading this website gave new meaning and purpose to existence. It treasures your every mouse click, cradling it to its breast as if it were a new born baby. You feel bathed in an eternal love with every page refresh. iFlorist will free you of all life's burdens. Be reborn to a new and better life where your heart's desires are truly fulfilled for the first time.

You will never,ever wish to use any other place on the internet ever again. I'm going there right now.

It cures cancer too.

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You've...

...been reading the reviews of Katie Price's wonderful 'A Whole New World' on Amazon haven't you! I wonder if this flower site would serenade your love with a copy of this album?

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Whole-World-Katie-Price-Peter/dp/B000JU8FXK/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1269935879&sr=8-3

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Anonymous Coward

heh

Those positive reviews read exactly like the ones in just about every Viagra spam email ever.

"this is best store,made my penis big long time"

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There is a problem with their ordering system ...

... I thought I'd ordered flowers for a funeral from these turkeys a couple of years ago. Turns out that after you think you have ordered there is a final confirmation page which looks like a "Thank you for your order" please print this page, but actually needs to be clicked through before the order is finalized. At least that is only only reason I can give for the order still being in the shopping cart when I revisited the site after non-delivery.

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Happy

Why not...

... order some flowers for the lovely Ms. Bee? Then we can be sure of the quality of their service.

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Flame

Oh, fantastic

Now the fucking Indian sweatshops cock up online ratings systems as well as IT in general, thats just great.

Someone please do the needful and cut off that subcontinent from the internet.

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Dead Vulture

Hype

The reviews look like they are copied (with probably deliberate errors) from marketing brochures. Taken a bite at a time (to avoid a vomit-on-the-keyboard accident)

"complimentary gift" - nobody uses this term excepting marketers.

"never been easier" - also a marketing term

"140 countries" - is reviewer suggesting he sends flowers to people in 140 countries??

"most comprehensive in the industry - marketing brochure

And their waffle in reply to your email - "We have no real control over what is written about us" - probably means that they have outsourced the review writing.

Couldn't get the Paris icon in, but the tombstone fits nicely...

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Ugh

Those are some bad good reviews. But I rarely say it with flowers so maybe I am not the target market.

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that old 'poor spelling' scam...

I have noticed that poor spelling tends to be taken for authenticity, so the best way of faking up five-star feedback is to use 'definately' and 'sicne' and so on.

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Anonymous Coward

So what's new?

Half the firms on the planet submit their own 'customer reviews' to their own and other websites. Anyone ever thought otherwise?

Most of them aren't even subtle - they're usually not hard to spot. Anyone who doesn't allow for this when using 'reviews' to make purchases is living in a dream world.

Recently I submitted an honest review of my favourite local restaurant on a travel website. The proprietor thanked me later, but asked why I'd only given her 4 stars out of 5. My answer was simple - "If I'd given you 5 out of 5, dear lady, every sensible reader would assume you'd written it yourself !"

I often get a much bigger laugh, not at the transparently commercial 'reviews', but at people who write things like "I haven't even opened my new (whatever) yet, but it's the best ever!! 10 out of 10 !!" Now what's THAT about....? :o))

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Usually by firms at the seedy end of the market

Other 'review' sites that either seem to have nothing but "5* I cannot believe how wonderfull you are" or "1* you took my money you scummy gits" reviews include:

a. virtually every 'Post your old gold to us' site

b. virtually every 'Post your old phone to us' site

It is really funny to see just how many obviously fake reviews you can spot. It is not that difficult, just count the 5*.

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Flowers? Seedy?

I see what you did there.

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So...

Do you think it's an internal thing or perhaps (and here's a good business idea for the unscrupulous) it could be a third party set-up where there is financial remuneration for a quantity of positive reviews.

Of course if you wanted to deliver a good service then you might want to consider maybe not ALWAYS giving a 5 star rating, throw in a few 4 stars, maybe even a 3. Even better, maybe consider actually writing something that could have been written by a genuine individual. Rather than things like "GRATEST STORE EVER!" when referring to a purveyor of flowers. I mean let's be honest, it's a flower shop, it's not going to be the greatest store ever, it's just going to sell you flowers, it's not likely to source you a new kitchen, the needle for the 20 year old record player you've been searching for for the last 15 years as well as the latest game for wii.

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Dead Vulture

Shame on you, elreg

The bad reviews are clearly made up by jealous rival companies. The good reviews are clearly posted by honest, happy customers. And this article is playing the rival companies' game.

This is a display of biased, dishonest journalism at its worst. I can't imagine how you will make up for your stain on those decent businessmen's honour.

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Pint

It's Not So Much...

...that they hired fake reviewers, but more that they seem to have outsourced the work to India.

It's too early for a 211, but I'm heading to the fridge now!

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Ignore good reviews

In any product review website, you should ignore the good reviews: look at the bad reviews and decide if the writers are insane or not.

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OK!

Sounds legit to me. And as soon as my new found friends from Nigeria make me rich, I'll use Iflorist to send flowers to my wife.

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The best ever internet florist...

I'm sorry....I couldn't resist the temptation to post a review on Trustpilot after reading about iFlorist on El Reg......

The best ever internet florist...

My wife recently found out that I've been having sex with her older sister for the past 6 years. She was understandably very upset with me. She was threatening to divorce me. No problem, though, because I knew about iFlorist. A few minutes online is all the effort it took, and my wife was soon back in love with me after receiving a dozen red roses. Thank you Iflorist, YOU ROCK!!

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Anonymous Coward

globalisation, isn't it?

Please to be telling me why it is a suprising that companies such as the esteemed and lovely iFlorist are indeed now sourcing-out there corporate lying and forum trolling jobs to Bangalore to go along with the help desk, call centre and IT supportings?

this is the future, isn't it?

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FAIL

People paid to leave reviews - the evidence!

Here is a quote from the following site talking about iflorist http://webupon.com/web-talk/iflorist-smells-good/

"I am a member of one of those sites for workers and visit it daily in order to earn some useful extra cash. A few days ago I came across a peculiar task, that asked people to write a positive review of a site; the prize was 0.40 cents."

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Pint

This Must Be...

...annoying the crap out of Google AdSense fraud guys.

There are clicks worth $78.00 to a webmaster. Over $5 is not the least uncommon in certain categories.

Actual quote from human, "Damn AdSense, I was up to $23,000 and they cancelled my account."

That's a lot of 211.

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WTF?

I'm confused....

I'm confused because reading this I'd certainly call fake on the website and point and laugh at the poor scammers....

But I've used IFlorist several times...ok before I posted this I did a quick google and see there there is an IFlorist.co.uk and IFlorist.com...

I've used them mostly for USA and Trinidad, but once or twice for the UK so I can't be sure which I used...but whichever one it was were on time and as advertised for me....

I tried checking my mail (they send me regular mail shots for stuff like mothersday etc) but of course I've cleaned up my mailbox so until the next one I can't see if it's .com or .co.uk that I'm using....

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FAIL

Win an iPod!

just leave three, five star reviews on trustpilot...

Unfortunatly for iForist i feel that the problem is actually a trustpilot issue. looking through several reviews reveals that this problem is far bigger than just iFlorist.

However iFlorist do themselves no favours when they mention that they are linking anonymous reviews to customer orders to determine that some bad reviews are fake! yet it is clear that the problem is with the good reviews! iflorist should have said they could not associate the good reviews with orders either (afterall I bet they cant!). now thier credibility is in tatters too!

Both sites just qualified for the blacklist.

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Outsourcing

I sea a oppitunity four paying indeans too make money riting revews for moneh.

Or maybe someone's employing English teenagers to astroturf? Though to be honest the level of English is far too high for that to be the case ;)

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Vulture is symbol....

Vulture is symbol of picking flesh from dead bones of carrion.

El Reg takes this symbol to its campaign for shaming of moribund iFlorist and delivers with 100% accuracy.

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Coat

well, damn

Their attempts at astroturfing are more subtle and believable than either Monster's shitty headphones department, or Denon DJ division, at least..

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Come on Reg - go all Which? on us

Order some lovely flowers for the even lovelier Moderatrix (or Lester) and see what happens, then write your own review.

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Coat

Artificial flowers?

Perhaps they should register iAstroturf...

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A+++++ Great seller. Would do business any time.

Ah bollocks, wrong bot.

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just gave me an idea

Next time you're annoyed by a company, hire freelancers and make them write thousands of good reviews!

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RW
Coat

@ Armus Squelprom

"our esteemed Moderatix"

Talk about damning with faint praise.

Make that Our Divine Moderatrix, She Who Walks on Water, With a Crown of Stars About Her Divine Visage, Bringing Peace, Joy, and Happiness to the Denizens of the World; She Whose Outstretched Great Toe is Worthy of Worship and Adulation; She Whose Merest Glance Penetrates the Hearts of Believers. [and so on]

Cripey! Just like fake positive reviews, if you're going to suck up to ODM, go for the big time, eh?

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Badgers

Mechanical Turk

I wonder if this stuff might be being done using Amazon's 'Mechanical Turk' service? For those who don't know it, it's a fairly ingenious way of outsourcing and mechanising crappy tasks which require human effort (i.e. - reading street signs in photographs).

I quite like the basic idea of the service, but every time I look at the the site there seems to be more tasks like 'go to this site and write a glowing review' or 'make a link to my blog'.

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Anonymous Coward

RE: Mechanical Turk

Hi Steve - see here: http://webupon.com/web-talk/iflorist-smells-good/

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EU Directive on Unfair Commercial Practices

If these guys have been posting fake reviews to boost their own business within the EU, they would presumably fall foul of the EU Directive on Unfair Commercial Practices. As the .uk website lists a UK address, they should come under the remit of the OFT....

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Black Helicopters

amazon

Spooky a large portion of the reviewers left a 5 star review for amazon. I wonder if this was to raise their credibility, or the great book warehouse is also dabbling in nefarious marketing.

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