Negative reviews may be quite detrimental to your company, not to mention the stress and frustration they can bring. Fortunately, unfavorable internet evaluations don’t necessarily mean lost business, just like complaints voiced in person. Instead, by being proactive, you can use them to draw in more clients.
So, how does responding to negative reviews affect your business, and how can you use that in your favor?
How Reviews Impact Your Business
People used to trust word-of-mouth recommendations before the Internet took over. Nowadays, people are far more likely to read a few online reviews before visiting a store or making a purchase.
Studies show that before making a purchase, 90% of all customers conduct online research about a company. 85% of respondents think that online reviews are just as valuable as recommendations from friends and family.
There are many aspects in which online reviews can affect a business. Let’s take a look at some of them.
Loss of Income
According to a study’s findings, a company is more likely to have an average rise in sales of 5 to 9 percent if Yelp ratings go up by one star. On the other side, one unfavorable customer review can cost your company 30 clients.
Let’s be honest. When you Google potential businesses to buy goods or services from, you will go for the one with the most positive reviews, even if the other one has lower prices.
People are more likely to trust you after seeing a wide range of favorable customer reviews on your goods, which may result in more sales. A consumer will spend more money with you and is more likely to return for additional purchases if you exude greater confidence and trust in your business.
Most businesses lose potential customers when they have too many negative reviews on social media and review sites.
Affects Search Engine Results
Google, the search engine juggernaut, has developed a strict policy regarding the promotion of high-quality businesses to its users. Multiple negative reviews will consequently have an overall negative effect on your company’s online reputation.
It goes without saying that if a company has received bad ratings, customers will be reluctant to use it. That does not mean, however, that all of the reviews on your website should be five stars. It wouldn’t look realistic or reliable.
One or two bad reviews, according to Google, aren’t important enough to change where you appear in search results, though. However, it is crucial to have a reputation management strategy to avoid a big number of negative reviews.
Affects Business Reputation
Reviews are essential in determining whether people trust a company and, as a result, which companies they decide to purchase from. Before ever dealing with a business, many potential consumers decide whether or not they will work with them based on reviews.
For a business owner, losing their hard-earned reputation is the worst possible outcome, much worse than losing cash and customers. Whether they are true or not, unfavorable reviews lower the trust that potential clients have in your business.
Loss of Potential Customers
Customers typically have a variety of options for where to shop. Why would they squander their money on shoddy goods, services, or experiences with customers?
According to studies, a single unfavorable review might turn away two out of every ten customers. Up to 60% of clients may leave after reading three unfavorable reviews, and up to 70% may leave after reading four or more.
Many of these challenges stem from broader small business challenges that entrepreneurs face, making it essential for businesses to be proactive in addressing feedback and improving their services.
Should You Respond to Negative Reviews?
Absolutely. The real desire of consumers to interact with businesses is a key factor in the expansion of online reviews.
Customers expect to be heard individually and treated personally, just as they did in the past through conventional channels like surveys and customer support phone calls. There are several benefits to responding to bad reviews:
Builds Customer Trust
Responding to unfavorable reviews enables you to set your company apart from fraudulent ones, which is crucial for small enterprises. Nowadays, people are very aware of online scams and would go above and beyond to verify a company’s integrity before making a purchase, particularly if they read several unfavorable reviews.
The best strategy to portray the reliability of your company is to respond to unfavorable customer feedback. It’s the ideal way to address consumer concerns, perhaps refute unfounded allegations, and—most importantly—earn the customer’s trust back.
Shows Commitment to Potential Consumers
Before purchasing a local business, everyone wants to know how their future problems and requests will be handled. Responding to negative and positive reviews is the finest approach to demonstrating your commitment to prospective clients. Simply put, this demonstrates that you look out for your clients even after providing the services they paid for.
Fixes Your Reputation
Your internet reputation can be seriously damaged by just one negative review, especially if you don’t notice it or ignore it. Not responding to reviews would lead potential customers to think they are accurate.
Remember that even if your business has a solid real-life reputation, your internet presence still has the power to boost or destroy it.
Win Customers Back
You can perhaps regain lost customers by personally addressing negative reviews. Although most customers are inclined to share their negative experiences with a brand, you may still influence them if you demonstrate sincere accountability, empathy, and determination to improve.
When you create a dialogue with your customers, you help them feel heard and valuable because they will be actively involved in helping the business grow.
Learn From Your Mistakes
Not only should you evaluate and correct consumer complaints, but you should also consider using them to improve some areas of your company. That covers everything from giving only the best customer service to modernizing facilities or fixing mistakes made throughout the purchasing process.
Finding a quick and straightforward technique to address bad reviews is crucial because there are still things to do to win back customers and enhance your goods and services.
Tips for Approaching Negative Reviews
We love responding to positive reviews, but we must respond to negative ones for customers to respect us. These are some tips you can follow to approach negative feedback:
Make sure to openly address negative reviews that customers may leave for your company. Be polite and appropriate in your response. It should also mention your effort to fix your customer’s problem. Other prospective clients check to see how companies respond to negative feedback. They will have a higher opinion of your organization if they witness you responding quickly, politely, and positively.
Even if the client is acting irrationally, professionalism must come first. When you read a bad review that disparages your company, it might make you lose your temper. Being respectful demonstrates to readers that you have complete control over the situation and the ability to correct any mistakes made.
In addition, acknowledge the client’s annoyance. Regardless of their complaint, do not attempt to minimize their annoyance. Tell them you understand and that you’ll come up with solutions.
Use Them to Improve
When someone has a legitimate grievance against a good or service, they frequently submit a negative review. You should carefully study them and make adjustments as necessary. You can stop further negative reviews by fixing your product’s or service’s fundamental issues. Customers can see that you value their opinions and are eager to address issues as they arise by seeing that problems are fixed.
Businesses that pay attention to their clients will prosper. People who own their shortcomings and make improvements to them to improve future client experiences are well-liked and trusted online and in the real world.
Personalize Your Responses
Every unfavorable review should receive an individualized response. When a company responds the same way to all of them, it seems unnatural and robotic.
Customers should feel that a real person is addressing their complaints and can provide solutions.
Acknowledge the reviewer’s comments and accept responsibility for any errors or problems that were brought up. Instead of disregarding their experience, this helps to legitimize it. It’s crucial to keep in mind that thousands of potential clients may see your answer to a review.
Even if you believe the customer is wrong, show empathy.
Encourage Clients to Leave Reviews
You might be debating whether taking the risk of accepting all reviews is worthwhile. If your clients enjoy using your product or service, and it is dependable, it is.
If you don’t, that’s okay. You can at least try to correct your flaws now that you’re aware of them. Asking your customers to review your product or service is a great way to increase your popularity and attract more clients.
Negative Review Response Examples
Avoid using the same canned responses. That would give the impression that you are only employing an auto-reply bot. We recommend having different templates and personalizing them to match your brand’s voice. Here are some responses you can use for any negative review:
Good day, [Customer Name]
I’m [your name], and I work for [business name] in [role]. I’m sorry that [problem synopsis] occurred.
We value our customers greatly, so we want to have this resolved for you as soon as possible. Would you please email me at [email] so we can continue the conversation? I’m interested in hearing from you.
Thank you in advance, [your name]
Dear [Customer Name], we appreciate you taking the time to tell us about your experience. We value all comments and consider them seriously. We are sorry that you had a bad experience, and we understand that your product did not live up to your expectations. You can be sure that we’re always looking for ways to make our products, including the materials and packaging methods, better.
This circumstance is not representative of the principles we uphold at [company name], where we work hard to be the best retailer by offering high-quality products and first-rate customer service. Based on our return and exchange policy, a representative will send you a private message with instructions on how to set up a replacement.
Regards, [company name]
We’re sorry to learn that you weren’t satisfied with our [product or service].
The proper department has been informed of the problem, and our team is now coming up with a solution as I write this email.
Thank you for bringing this issue to light since we go above and beyond to make sure that our clients are happy with both our products and services. If there is anything further I can do to help, kindly let me know.
Best, [your name]
How Do I Keep Track of My Online Reviews?
Reviews can be monitored manually or through a review monitoring program. Using a review tracking application is advised if you own a large business because it will reduce your workload and keep you organized. All your reviews will be accessible from a single, useful dashboard if you choose the correct tool.
What Are the Most Popular Review Sites?
Whichever review site your consumers use the most will be the greatest one for your company. You will learn more about your company and how people feel about you as you amass more reviews. Among the most popular ones we have:
- Google My Business.
- TripAdvisor. (for hotels, restaurants, bars, and entertainment places)
- Facebook ratings and reviews
What Should I Do After Addressing the Review?
Make sure to follow up with the customer to see whether they are satisfied with how the problem or issue was resolved once you have addressed it. Making sure to stay in touch with your clients can help them feel important and may improve how they view their interaction with your business.
Wrapping It Up
Businesses must maintain appropriate records of positive and negative customer feedback. Monitoring your online reviews will help you keep a good reputation.
The most crucial factor is to provide the greatest goods and services, which will result in positive evaluations for your company.