Tag Archives: online reputation

How to Respond to Bad Reviews 

If you own a business then online review management should be a consistent part of your marketing plan. Reviews affect your brand, but more importantly it’s how you respond to reviews that will have the most impact on potential customers. I would like to say that you will never get a bad review, but even the best of the best get less than 5 stars, even if very rarely. Your positive reviews should greatly outweigh your negative reviews. If not then you should look at the quality of your services or products. Here are 5 tips on how to respond to bad reviews:

  1. ALWAYS Respond – The biggest piece of advice I can give as the owner of a digital marketing company is to respond to every single review, good or bad. Positive reviews are easy to respond to because they make you feel all warm and cozy inside, so thanking someone for an awesome review comes naturally. Negative reviews are difficult to take, but you can turn the outcome into a positive experience with a professional response.
  2. Calm Down – I would say to remain calm but let’s face it, we all get a little ticked off when a bad review is submitted by a customer. It’s really hard not to take it as a personal attack, but those feelings will not lead to the best response. I manage my clients reviews for them, so it’s easy for me not to get emotionally involved after years of practice running Shayla Does It Marketing Services. If you get heated easily then wait at least 24 hours before responding and you will calm down some. I find that a glass of wine helps. how to respond to bad reviews
  3. Respond Directly – Almost every review site will allow the business to reply directly to reviews. Google even recommendeds to respond to reviews! DO NOT make a post about the review and/or rant about the person or the review – this is very unprofessional! Folks will likely be leery to give you any feedback or do business with you at all assuming you may treat them in the same manner.
  4. Apologize – Even if you know the review gives false information you should always apologize for a less than positive experience. Sometimes it’s obvious that the profile of the person submitting the review is either fake or not in your customer records. More often than not it actually IS a customer or someone who knows a customer and they are using a fake profile to hide their identity. It’s human nature to avoid confrontation, but the internet makes it a lot easier to complain anonymously. Respond to this type of review by saying something like:

    “We apologize if you had a less than positive experience with our company, however we do not have any record of you in our customer database. We would really appreciate calling us or sending us a direct message so we could discuss what happened.”

  5. Reach Out – Often times it’s appropriate to offer corrective action in addition to an apology, especially for a specific issue. I recommend to ask in the response if the reviewer would please send you a direct message so you can privately work to resolve the issue. Here’s an example:

    “We are sorry to hear about your experience with our company. We strive to offer excellent customer service and would like to discuss this with you further. Please give us a call, a direct message, or an email so we can work together to resolve this issue.”

    Another approach is to simply say you will strive to do better in the future without necessarily apologizing for anything. This especially works for a less than perfect rating or review without comments. Here’s an example:how to respond to bad reviews

If you remain calm, professional, apologetic, approachable, and prompt, then your business will still be seen in a positive light even after the darkest of reviews are submitted.

 

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Shayla Robertson, owner of Shayla Does It Marketing Services is a highly respected expert Digital Marketer. She specializes in webdesign, social media management, blogging, SEO, graphic design, and more! Learn more about Shayla and why she was nominated as one of the best digital marketing companies of OKC in 2017: www.shayladoesit.com

 

online reviews are important

Importance of Online Reviews

One of the many wonderful things about the Internet is the opportunity for people to express their opinions on almost anything. If you own a business, it’s a way for customers to comment on your service or products in order to share with others. These comments are posted on the web as online reviews, either directly to your business’s website, social media pages, or to other sites which aggregate online reviews.

How Important Are Online Reviews?

In the digital age, online reviews have largely taken the place of the word-of-mouth referrals. After all, it may be easy to ask your neighbor who mows his lawn, but harder to find someone you know who has ordered a polka dot cat sweater from an affordable website in the past year. Potential buyers can easily seek out online reviews of products and services offered by various companies all around the world — including people who have used your business in the past.

Positive online reviews also increase your appearance within search engine results. You will notice when you search for a service or product that Google Maps will appear in the results with the highest ranked businesses that you are searching for. This is also true for many other search engine sites such as yellow pages, yelp, bing, etc…

It’s easy to see why positive reviews are like gold, while negative ones can be toxic and dangerous.

Check out these online reputation statistics which reiterate the importance of reviews.

Check out these online reputation statistics which reiterate the importance of online reviews.

How Can You Monitor Your Online Reviews?

  1. Be proactive – Don’t just read a few online reviews when you feel like it. Schedule time regularly (weekly is a good goal) to check for new reviews. Also, when looking at various review sites, take note if your recent positive reviews are not current; the older they are, the less impact they have on the opinions of others.
  1. Respond quickly – Whether positive or negative, you should respond to every review. If positive, thank the reviewer for taking the time to spread their great experience with others. On the other hand, you may come across customers who express displeasure about their experience dealing with your business. Do not ignore these individuals, and do not procrastinate in responding. When you respond quickly, you send the message that you care about customer input and are taking steps to resolve the problem. Always be genuine and sincere because it reflects in your response.
  1. Keep the tone civil – Some online reviews can be scathing, juvenile, inappropriate, and downright unfair. Even if a certain review does awaken some strong emotions, do not mimic the reviewer’s negative tone. Instead, remain calm and civil while leaving out emotional words, and respond to the reviewer with class. If you get dragged into the virtual mud with a reviewer, both you and your business almost always lose.
  1. Address the issue and offer to make it right – If a reviewer has a legitimate complaint — even if it wasn’t the fault of you or your staff — try to find a way to make him or her happy. Offer a refund or a discount on future services. You’d be surprised how many positive reviews are born out of negative ones that were addressed properly and in a timely manner.

How Can You Get More Good Reviews?

Ask for reviews – Make it apparent to all of your customers that they have a voice in how you do business. This means not only having a place on your website where people can post or read reviews, but also promoting the appropriate online review destination (i.e. Google+, Facebook, Yelp, Yahoo, etc…) in print and email communications.

Newsletters and emails are the best way to ask for reviews on a regular basis. Email marketing is (and will continue to be) the most important channel any business can use to continually get their name in front of their past and present clients. It’s consistent, targeted, effective, inexpensive and used by over half of the world’s population. One way to do this is outsource your email campaigns to a reputable marketing company, or you could sign up for a service that automatically emails your clients to ask for their reviews after a service is performed or a product is purchased. Emails always increase the odds that happy customers will take the time to sing your praises online.

if a customer expresses his or her satisfaction to you verbally, be sure to respond by saying, “Thanks! Feel free to tell the world by putting that in a review online!”

Encourage people to read your reviews – Display a link to your online reviews or “testimonials” on your website, Facebook page, and anywhere else you have an online presence. Not only will potential customers read your glowing reviews, but your current customers are more likely to add their positive feedback as well.

If you need help with the task of online review management, Shayla Does It Marketing Services offers online review management as a part of monthly seo and link building packages. Contact us for more information or a free consultation.