How to Tackle Negative Reviews and Improve Your Online Reputation
Leaving reviews is as easy as it has ever been due to the overarching impact of digitization on society. With so many websites and social platforms at their fingers, consumers have become comfortable with leaving both positive and negative reviews for product they used or businesses they interact with.
While positive reviews don’t pose any risk to a brand’s reputation, negative reviews should always be taken in account. A negative review that’s left unanswered can look worse for your brand than the negative feedback itself. Responding to it can actually help your company.
Respond in a Timely Manner
Generally, when a customer takes the time to post a review, it’s clearly important to them. A short response time means that your brand cares about feedback. It also highlights the active engagement in conversations with its audience.
Conversely, the longer you wait, the more that person feels ignored. Sometimes, this can lead to further negative reviews and a bad reputation with your followers.
Offer a Genuine Apology
You might not agree with what the negative review says about your brand, but clearly something prompted someone to leave it. It’s important to acknowledge any mistakes or shortcomings in your customer service. Offer a genuine apology, so the reviewer understands that his complaint was listened to.
Keep a high level of professionalism in your responses. Don’t fuel the fire by a rude response. A negative response on your part will reflect poorly on your brand.
Right the Wrong
Responding is the first step, but solely providing a response isn’t enough. Your brand must take action and right any wrongs. After all, this is a chance to showcase your customer service and willingness to improve.
If the person was unhappy with your food service, offer them a coupon on their next visit. If they were unimpressed with your company’s assistance, ask them where you can improve.
Think of Future Customers
When you respond to negative feedback, always keep in the back of your mind what future customers will see. If the reviewer experienced a long wait time, assure them your business will work to make sure that doesn’t happen again. If the product wasn’t as advertised, let them know how you’ll address the issues.
Take It Offline
After addressing the feedback online, take the extra step and contact the customer directly. Call them or send them an email. Whatever you do offline will highlight your willingness to improve their experience. This type of interaction could even motivate the reviewer to change his opinion and return as a customer.
Avoid Keywords in Your Response
While generally you want to mention your brand name and related keywords in all online material, you probably don’t want a negative mention appearing on the first Google results page.