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Don't Ignore Negative Reviews: 6 Reasons Why It's Better to Face Them and How

Brand Development

As a Florida SEO services provider, we know how powerful online reviews can be. They can either make or break a business.

According to Truspilot, 90% of consumers read reviews before buying online, of which 94% say that they will likely avoid a business that has been rated poorly or negatively.

On the other hand, 72% say that positive reviews make them trust a local company more and that they’re more likely going to spend 31% more on a business with exceptional reviews.

Without a doubt, reviews can influence a person’s purchase decision. This is probably why there are still some business owners who are afraid of negative reviews and choose to hide, delete, or ignore them.

But, did you know that negative reviews can be helpful for your business? It all depends on how promptly and properly you respond to them.

97% of people who read online reviews from other shoppers also read a business’ response to them. 68% of consumers are also more likely to trust reviews when they see both the negative and positive ones.

If you’ve been shying away from negative reviews, it’s time to face them and turn the situation around in your favor. And, here’s how to do it.

Why Is It Better to Reply to Negative Reviews?

businessman trying to respond to feedback

Some businesses prefer to hide, remove, or even ignore unfavorable reviews about their business, but this is a big no-no. As a Florida SEO services provider, we highly recommend that you display them on your website, Facebook page, or your Google My Business. Here’s why:

It Tells Your Customers That You Value Their Feedback

Removing or ignoring negative reviews will only give an impression that you don’t care about your customers. This can leave them even more frustrated or infuriated than they originally were. What’s worse is, they might tell their friends and family about this incident and discourage others from doing business with you.

Take a look at it this way: If a customer took time to leave a review, it’s because they care and want you to be aware of the problem, so you can fix it and improve. This presents an opportunity for you to mend the broken relationship, win them back, and convince visitors to buy from you.

It’s an Opportunity to Showcase Your Commitment to Providing Excellent Customer Service

88% of consumers read reviews to determine if a business is dedicated to providing a positive experience to their customers and if they truly value them. Shoppers are more likely to buy from you if they see that you respond and act upon negative reviews.

It Helps Build Trust, Win Back Customers, and Turn Them into Advocates

Did you know that 95% of unhappy customers are more likely to do business with you again if their concern was ironed out quickly and nicely? It turns out that winning back customers doesn’t have to be complicated.

All you have to do is to listen to your customers’ feedback, apologize, help them fix the issue, promise to do better, and make sure to act on that vow.

It Provides an Insight on How You Can Improve Your Business and Services

What better way to know how to improve your business than through the honest feedback of your customers?

Reviews give you an insight into what you’re doing right and which areas you need to improve on, as well as an idea of what your customers expect from you and how you can provide them the kind of experience they want.

Embracing negative feedback and turning them into positive ones will not only improve your business's customer experience and service, but will also turn you into a brand that actually cares for its customers and listens to what they have to say. Plus, seeing how you’re truly committed to serving your customers could convince a visitor to do buy from you.

A Page with No Negative Reviews Feels Sketchy to Consumers

30% of shoppers will assume that a business’ online reviews are fake if they’re all positive. Why? Simply because it’s too good to be true! It’s impossible to please everybody, and people know that.

Getting some negative feedback won’t hurt your business, as long as you respond to them promptly and show that you’re committed to making things right. In fact, when handled well, negative feedback can provide balance and build trust among your audience.

It Boosts Your Google Ranking and Local SEO

Just to make things clear, negative reviews won’t help your ranking - responding to them will. According to a Moz study, review signals comprise 15.44% of Google’s Local Pack ranking factors.

By responding to reviews promptly, you’re showing people that you value the feedback of your customers, whether good or bad, and that you’re striving to deserve that five-star rating.

Florida SEO services can help you rank better in the local search, manage your reputation online, and get you the leads you need to make your business grow.

Tips to Handle Negative Reviews Properly

Handling negative reviews promptly and properly will not only allow you to turn unhappy customers into brand advocates, but also encourage potential customers to do business with you. So, how exactly can one handle a negative review properly? Let’s find out below:

1. Respond Quickly

More than 53% of consumers expect companies to respond to their negative reviews within seven days. However, 63% of them say that they never received a response from a business about their feedback.

Whether you get positive or negative reviews, always aim to respond as quickly as possible. Doing this will show that you care about what your customers have to say, and demonstrates that you take customer service seriously.

According to Forbes, 45% of shoppers will likely visit a business that responds to negative reviews, and companies that respond to at least 20% of their reviews get 33% more revenue than those that don’t.

The bottom line is, you need to reply and communicate with your customers in reviews.

2. Acknowledge, Express Remorse, and Thank Them for Their Feedback

man holding megaphone saying thank you

They say customers are always right. Well, this isn’t entirely true, but it’s implying that you want to give high priority to your customers’ satisfaction.

It never hurts to apologize for the inconvenience and the lousy experience  in your reply because aside from the fact that it can actually make you look good from other people’s point of view, it can also help calm an enraged customer down.

3. Resolve the Issue Offline

To make your apology sincere, reach out to that customer via phone call or email. Apologize for the bad experience and promise them that it won’t happen again. Offer to resolve the issue offline.

What does the situation call for? Is it a refund? Replace the damaged item? Some find a simple and sincere apology enough to make them change their review.

It’s best to make an offer, and then if the customer isn’t satisfied, ask them what they want and come into an agreement. Then, in an attempt to get them to buy from you again, send gift cards or exclusive discounts for their next purchase.

4. Keep Your Brand Voice Consistent

To impress your customers and those who are reading your reviews, send the right message every time.

Reading your reviews might be a potential customer’s first encounter with your brand, so you want to make a good impression and improve brand recognition by making your messaging, voice, and tone consistent and memorable.

5. Keep It Short but Sincere

Nobody wants to read a lengthy reply. That’s why you should keep your responses short but sweet. And, don’t forget to personalize. Make sure to call your customers by their first names!

6. Use Your Templates Alternately

A single template doesn’t always work for all kinds of reviews, so it’s best to have a couple of them ready for you to choose from. It’s also important to rotate your templates to avoid making your replies seem robotic and insincere.

Are You Ready to Use Negative Reviews to Your Advantage?  

five people giving thumbs up

When handled well, negative reviews can help create balance, build trust, and turn a doubtful visitor into a customer.

Approach negative reviews as an opportunity to serve your customers better. When answering reviews, whether negative or positive, remember your values as a company and that your ultimate goal is to help your customers make better purchasing decisions.

Digital Resource doesn’t just specialize in Florida SEO services, but we also offer reputation management, social media marketing, and employer branding. If you need help handling your negative reviews or getting reviews, we can help!

Contact us today for a free consultation!

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