For any business owner, everyone knows that reviews come with the territory. Any business will receive negative reviews at some point in their career or another and hopefully, your business has positive reviews too. Reading the positive reviews can leave you encouraged and help your business, but negative ones can often be hard to read, hard to take, and can sometimes even hurt your business sales drastically.
How you and your company respond to positive and negative reviews will determine how well your business does and how it’s perceived to your customers. How they see you is one of the most important parts of running your business. But with all these different reviews, how can you make sure you’re responding in a way that’s going to enhance your business and not hurt it? Well, this article is going to break down exactly how you can respond to both positive and negative reviews in a way that will help your business flourish.
Firstly, you need to make sure that all of your responses are formal and polite. It doesn’t matter if you’re commenting on positive or negative reviews, but how your customers see and read your responses will determine how they perceive you and their perception of you will determine if they’re going to continue to be your customers or not. You have to protect you and your company’s reputation, so when you respond to any reviews, you need to carefully think through it, especially when you deal with negative reviews. The last thing you want to do is take a negative review, which reflects badly on your company and makes it worse by responding in the wrong way.
To handle positive reviews, you need to make sure you do three major things:
1) Track reviews. If you’re getting reviews, especially positive ones, you want to make sure you know who is giving out those positive reviews for your business. There are a lot of sites that can help you keep track, such as Yelp, Product Review, Trip Advisor, and more. Each time your business is reviewed, they will let you know.
2) Decide who handles the reviews your business receives. You need to have someone assigned who will read and respond to the reviews you get. This person is one you want to make sure knows how to respond politely and someone who has experience in the area – an inexperienced person who handles this could hurt your company, so you want to make sure you get the right person for the job.
3) Claim or create your business page. Sites like Yelp (mentioned above), Zomato, and Google Places use data gathered from online to create a page for your business. Some do this automatically, which is great for you, but others will only do it after you’re reviewed.
Some of the things you want to keep in mind when handling any type of reviews for your business is:
1) Always respond to positive reviews. Most people’s automatic responses are to respond to negative reviews but when you read a positive one, you want to thank that person and show that you really care. If you don’t respond to your customers, people who went out of their way to review your brand or business, it tells others that you don’t care about them and that could cause you to lose customers, which is the last thing that you want.
2) Handle negative reviews well. If you get into an argument with anyone who leaves a negative review, customers are going to see that you aren’t calm and they may even choose not to work with your business because of the bad attitude they see. You are a business and therefore, should respond politely and professionally. Always remember that, even when a negative review is left. Another thing to help with negative reviews is to take what they say into consideration. It may not be correct and it may be ridiculous, but you never know when someone’s honest feedback can help you improve your business which may end with you getting more customers if these issues are addressed at some point.
3) Whatever you do, never ever post fake reviews. Do not hire writers to leave reviews of your content, do not write them yourself. It may take a while, but let the reviews come naturally on their own. If you’re ever caught doing fake ones, your reputation will be ruined and your business will be hurt because of it.
4) Follow the rules of whatever site the reviews are left on. If you don’t, it could also end with you having a bad reputation, which again, is the last thing your business needs.
Whatever you do, here are things you don’t want to do:
1) Do not bribe your customers in exchange for reviews. This reflects poorly on you and your brand.
2) Do not send emails asking everyone in your email list for positive reviews. Begging for reviews looks just as bad as bribing does.
Here are some things you can do to make reviewing more convenient for your customers.
1) Use the logos of review sites in your store and your website.
2) In your store, give away comment cards that include the logos and website addresses of review sites.
3) Put a review us now button on your website
4) Always give your customers new and good reasons to review your business (examples of this would be new offers, products, etc).
5) Politely ask customers who have expressed to you that they’re really happy with your brand or business to leave a review.
6) Set a goal to get a few new reviews each month.
Setting up your own business can be hard and keeping it running can be even worse at times. Getting reviews can make or break your business in so many different ways. Too many negative reviews can lead customers away from you and your brand and too many positive ones can make them suspicious. Even though you have no control over what reviews are left, there are things you can do to help and hopefully, this article at least broke down the ways in which you can respond. The last thing you want to do is to respond in a way that reflects badly on your business. You and your business have enough to worry about without the added trouble of a bad response on your part. Remember to respond to all reviews, show that you care, and never ever argue with someone or respond rudely to negative ones. Be professional, especially if you want to be taken seriously as a professional.