It’s impossible to please everyone. No matter how great your employees are or how well your business operates, someone is bound to be unhappy. And it’s hard not to feel upset when a customer leaves a negative review, especially when it seems unjustified.
Regardless of how you feel, it’s important that you handle it the right way. Below are six valuable tips that can turn a negative review into a positive experience for your customers.
1. Get in Front of the Problem
Communication is key, whether it’s a product or service that your business is selling. Provide your customers with as much information upfront as possible. Many negative reviews are partly due to a lack of information or awareness. When everything is laid out ahead of time and well communicated, bad experiences are often avoided. Prevent the situation before it happens by staying in front of it.
2. Keep Your Emotions in Check
Don’t compound the problem by arguing or firing back, even if you think the negative review is unfair or deliberately misrepresented. The situation will only further escalate and frustrate the customer if you fail to offer a resolution.
The best way to handle negative feedback is addressing the problem and finding a way to make it right. Regardless of how you feel, the customer had a less than stellar interaction with your brand. Even if they are insulting or disrespectful, it’s in your best interest to stay neutral, polite, understanding, and focused on the issue at hand. Additionally, by publicly responding to a review, potential customers will see how well you handle negative feedback.
3. Gather Your Facts – Quickly
Even though the customer is always right, it’s okay to do a little research to better understand exactly what happened. Circulate the reviews around the company and ask questions. You’ll not only get a bigger picture of what went wrong, but you’ll be able to provide a more informed response to the customer. It’s also helpful to ask open-ended questions such as “What would you like us to do to make it right?” or “What can we do better in the future?” Asking for specifics will help you address similar situations in the future.
4. Don’t Ignore or Delay Responding
Negative reviews are a valuable opportunity to reach out to your customers directly and show that you care about their interaction with your brand. Don’t waste it by failing to respond. Customers are more likely to either remove the negative review or return to the business if their concerns were addressed.
Additionally, it’s important that you tackle a negative review promptly. Don’t let a bad review go unaddressed for days or weeks while you think about how to respond. That will only send a message to the customer that you don’t care. Reviewers often just want to be seen and heard, so working to solve the problem quickly can turn into a positive result in the end.
5. Build a Steady Flow of Positive Reviews
Not only do positive reviews matter, but the number of positive experiences as well. Most customers will read through several online reviews before making a purchase decision. The best way to counteract a negative review is to create a steady stream of positive customer reviews coming in.
Provide an easy way for your customers to leave a positive review about your business. By setting up a review system for your business, you can empower customers to share their experience about your business, build trust in your brand, collect ongoing reviews, and build your online reputation.
6. Learn from the Process
You can’t keep track of everything, and mistakes are inevitable. However, negative reviews can help a business owner spot oversights or flaws in the system. This is one of the gifts negative feedbacks can bring. A negative review gives you an opportunity to make corrections within your organization and an opportunity to improve.
Customers appreciate businesses that can identify their shortcomings and a willingness to change. So take note of the errors, and don’t be afraid to adapt to better meet your customers’ needs. Progress can lead to more sales and opportunities for your business.
Imagine a world without negative feedback. You would have no way of knowing how to improve. No matter how terrible a review, it’s an opportunity to do better and show the integrity of your business.
What tools are you using to monitor your online reviews? If you need assistance in improving your online reputation or any other areas of digital marketing, we’re here to help. Contact our team at Fusion One Marketing to get started.