Did you just receive a negative review and are now figuring out how to deal with it?
Reading a bad review about your business can be gut-wrenching, and we totally understand why.
According to Reviewtrackers, negative reviews have convinced 94% of consumers to avoid a business, and four out of five shoppers admit to changing their minds about a recommended buy after reading negative reviews.
Negative reviews can drive away customers, decrease your profitability, and taint your online reputation. However, given that you can’t please everyone, and lapses do happen sometimes, they’re unavoidable.
Don’t fret just yet.
As your go-to Miami SEO company, we will share with you tips on how you can turn negative reviews into positive PR for your business, and use them to gain more customers.
But before that, let’s look at the bright side of things and discuss the benefits of negative reviews!
We know what you’re thinking, and no, we’re not crazy. As counter-intuitive as it may sound, negative reviews can actually do your business good. Here’s why:
According to a study conducted by RevenueJump, the number of your reviews can influence your business’ performance on local search results. They found that businesses with the highest-ranked listing have an average of 38 reviews, while those with the lowest ranks have an average of 14.3 reviews.
As a leading Miami SEO company, we believe that having a couple of negative reviews won’t hurt, especially if you respond to them appropriately. Think of it as a way to add to the total quantity of your reviews that can help boost your SEO performance.
We all know how Yelp and Google My Business are so keen when it comes to filtering out fake reviews - too keen that sometimes they also block genuinely satisfied reviews from customers.
Some shoppers feel the same way too. When they see too many positive reviews, they become skeptical about a business and assume that a good percentage of those reviews are fake.
So, having a few negative reviews can be helpful.
Gossips or bad word of mouth doesn’t give you the chance to redeem yourself because you don’t even know that people are talking badly about your business in the first place. With negative reviews, however, there is hope for you to turn things around.
By responding respectfully and promptly to complaints and acting upon them, you can change their perceptions about your business and even convince them to give you a second chance.
If a customer is being unreasonable with you even though you’ve already apologized and offered a refund, don’t worry because according to BrightLocal, 77% of consumers ignore reviews that are more than three months old.
Another reason that make negative reviews useful is that it alerts you of problems you never knew existed. It provides you the opportunity to fix them and improve your business.
Nobody wants to be ignored or treated poorly, especially your customers. Make sure you respond to every review, both negative and positive in a professional-yet-friendly manner. You also want to give them a hint of your brand personality in your responses by using emojis.
You might think that the best way to deal with negative reviews is to ignore them, but choosing to ignore them can actually give off the impression that you’re guilty or you don’t care.
Show your customers and those who are interested in buying your products or services that you care about them by being prompt with your responses.
You also want to make your interactions feel personal, which means addressing them by their first names and keeping your response as individualized as possible.
For negative reviews, acknowledge your mistake and keep your response humble and apologetic. Sometimes, a sincere apology from you is all it takes to change their review or give your business another chance.
Then again, there will always be angry customers who’ll want more. So, without them having to tell you, make it up to them by providing excellent customer service. Go the extra mile by offering them a refund (if necessary), discounts, free shipping, and other perks.
Here’s an example of how to genuinely express your gratitude to positive reviews:
Review: I love your latest lip balm collection. They’re light on the lips and so moisturizing!
Response: Hi, (customer name)! Thank you for your kind words. We do our best to make sure our products not only look good on our customers, but also feel good. Please give us your email so we can send you an exclusive discount for your next purchase. Your review is very much appreciated!
Now, here’s how you can apologize and appease an upset customer:
Review: Not recommended! When I opened the package, the item was not sealed properly. The gloss spilled and made a mess on my bed. See the picture attached!
Response: Hi, (customer name)! We’re very sorry that the item you received wasn’t properly sealed or packed. Even though we take quality control very seriously, things like this still happen. Let us make it up to you. Please provide us your email so our customer service team can reach out to you and send you a replacement. Have a great day!
You can leverage negative reviews to create a frequently asked question section on your website to clear things up, set the right expectations, and debunk fake reviews.
Sometimes, customers get disappointed because they feel like you didn’t live up to their expectations or because they misunderstood or there was a miscommunication. So, to help clear things up and eliminate any confusion your customers may be experiencing with your business, make sure you address common complaints on your FAQ page.
No business is perfect, but this isn’t an excuse not to improve.
Take note of the common reasons why people feel discontented with your business, and see to it that you address them by improving your customer service, products, processes, employee training, or whatever it is that they’re complaining about.
This is one of the best ways you can improve your business and keep your customers happy!
You can also use negative reviews to come up with social media content or blog posts that will help your customers avoid going through the same bad experience again.
For example, a customer complains about how the lipstick she bought from your store looks different on her compared to how it looks on the website. This means that the customer isn’t aware that lipstick colors may look different on different people because of various factors.
So, to resolve the issue, you can create a guide that will help customers how to choose the best shade of lipstick color for their skin tone. You can also make a fun infographic that aims to educate customers about how lipstick shades look differently on people because of factors like skin tone, pH level, etc.
Nothing feels better than resolving an issue and redeeming yourself, especially if it’s a problem that could potentially damage your online reputation.
Share resolved negative reviews on your social media pages and urge other customers who went through the same bad experience to reach out to you so you can make it up to them.
This will show people that you truly care about your customers and that you’re sincere towards providing excellent customer service. Plus, you get to save your reputation!
However, you do want to watch out for fake reviews or those who want to take advantage of you. Develop a system that allows you to confirm if a reviewer is telling the truth or not.
Below are some signs that you might be dealing with a phony review:
The best way to deal with fake reviews is to flag them as inappropriate and report them to Google Small Business support.
They say that what doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger. Don’t feel defeated when someone leaves a negative review about your business, but instead, use them to your advantage! Apply the five tactics we’ve shared with you above to turn negative reviews into positive PR for your business!
If you’re struggling with online reputation, we can help you!
Digital Resource is not only a Miami SEO company, but we also offer reputation management services. Let us assist you in building your credibility and establish trust among your target audience. Reach out to us today.
Think you've got what it takes to hang with the pros at Digital Resource? Check out our Careers page to browse current job openings!