When people want information about your business, they don’t go to the Yellow Pages, but to Google and social media. They want to see not only what you offer, but how you treat customers and the quality of their experiences.
Online reviews like those found on Yelp and Google My Business are valuable ways to engage customers and drive traffic to your business. The problem with many businesses is they don’t know about the reviews or how to respond to a review.
How you respond to bad reviews impacts not only the customer who placed the review but those that see it. We’ll examine the best ways to respond to reviews and why it’s important.
How Do You Know if You Have Reviews?
There are many review sites out there and it can be difficult to know what sites have reviews for your business. Many paid services offer to find these reviews, but they can be expensive.
If you search for “reviews for” name of business, then the most popular should come up. Once you have the sites, you need to claim the business listing. Claiming the listing lets you add information to the business listing, many have incorrect information, and respond to reviews.
The process of claiming a listing is different for every site, but you need to prove that you own or have control of the business’ online activity.
An unclaimed review has little information. Claiming the review lets you add pictures, videos, expanded information, and more. It’s a necessity not only for review response but also for marketing and search engine optimization.
A review with more information gets more attention than one without.
What if I Don’t Claim the Listing?
Reviews can be tricky and many businesses think that if they don’t claim the review, then no one can post a review. Even without a claimed listing, the listing still appears on the site. It’s common for review sites to have unclaimed listings with reviews.
By not claiming the listing, you lose control of the quality of the listing and responding to the review.
How to Respond to a Review That’s Positive
People are more likely to post a negative review because of a bad experience than one for a great experience. When someone does post a good review, it’s important to acknowledge it. The customer took the time to write a review about their fantastic experience and great reviews are worth their weight in gold.
Many review sites are searchable on Google and other search engines. If someone seeks reviews about your business, they see them on the search engine. You want them to see the best reviews.
Respond to a positive review thanking the customer for their review and how happy you are for their experience. Make sure to include the name of your business in your response, especially if the customer did not mention it in the review.
The opposite is true for bad reviews. Don’t include your business name, so it has less chance of coming up in a search.
The response doesn’t need to be long but should acknowledge the customer and the pride in your business.
Responding to an Average Review
If the customer posts a review of your business that is middle of the road, then you have the opportunity to improve the impact. An average review doesn’t give your business a good or bad rating. The customer felt the service or product was average.
They may list both positive and negative information. When you respond, you should thank them and be proud of the good aspects of the review. You then should inquire about the negative aspects and how you can do better.
Responding to a review shows you care about the customer’s experience and want to make it better. If the post gets too long, then suggest they direct message you.
What to Do About a Bad Review
Everyone has a bad day. When a customer’s experience is bad, they can skewer you on review sites. The most important rule of a bad business review response is never to be angry. Don’t blame the customer or insult them.
Instead, apologize for their experience and ask them to direct message you. You don’t want a long conversation trail on a bad review because it could lead to more negative information. You can mention that you’d be willing to provide them with a discount or other method of placation to have them come back.
If you can reach an understanding, then the customer may edit their review to show how well you responded or how good their next experience was. You can turn a negative review positive with the right attitude and motivation.
Dealing With Fake Bad Reviews
Some people enjoy posting completely fake bad reviews. They are often extreme in their negativity and include crude language.
Review sites are cautious about removing bad reviews. A person’s review, if credible, should be included because it was their experience. Fake reviews are a different matter.
You should first respond the same way you would to any negative review. Once done, contact the review site and ask for the review to be removed. You can also find businesses that specialize in Ripoff Report removal services.
There is likely a process in place to determine if the review is credible and to have it removed if not. The site examines your evidence and makes a ruling. If they decide to keep the review, there isn’t much more to be done.
Reviews Are Vital for Your Business
People trust online reviews because they come from people who had experiences with the business. You need to know how to respond to a review so that it impacts your business in the best way. If you choose to ignore reviews, then it can impact your online reputation and how new customers see your business.
If you want to learn more about the importance of business reviews, then please explore our site.