The internet has become a place for businesses to advertise and interact with consumers. Now that many businesses have broadened their customer demographics, it is harder for their reputation to be impacted by word-of-mouth.
The web provides an outlet for people to broadcast their thoughts and opinions. This level of freedom allows people to share experiences about all types of things, including business. This has made online reviews a huge outlet for consumers to express their feelings and experiences, both good and bad. This can be a great thing, as it helps the business understand what they are doing well and where they can improve, but it can also be detrimental for businesses if it is not handled correctly. So how do you deal with negative reviews online?
Firstly, it is important that you check your reviews regularly. You cannot ignore negative comments. This shows that you do not care about what your customers think. Respond to the review within twenty-four hours with a sincere and personal apology. Give the customer an e-mail address or other way that they can reach out to you so you can explain what went wrong and how you will fix the problem.
Try to make it up to them in any way you can, such as offering them a discount or giving them complimentary good or service to show that your business is much better than they may have thought based on their one bad experience. Follow up with the customer to see if they enjoyed their experience more the second time around. Then, you can politely request that they delete their negative review.
You will need to be able to differentiate between valid and invalid reviews. Valid reviews are ones that are written by real customers while invalid ones can be written by a number of people, such as competitors, staff members, and people that were paid to write a review. These reviews can be filled with lies to make a business seem bad in an attempt to lower sales. You should request that all invalid reviews be deleted.
Ask customers to leave reviews. Do not try to force them to leave a positive review, instead ask them to leave an honest review based on their experiences with the business. This way, you can learn what people actually think of your business while building the reputation and credibility of your business.
Make sure you take something away from every review you receive, both good and bad. You must value the thoughts and concerns of each of your customers to build a good relationship with consumers. If you notice that you receive several similar complaints over time, make a change to the issue. If there is a recurring issue, it’s unlikely that it is a random occurrence or a bad moment and there may be a larger problem in the structure of your business that needs to get fixed.
We hope that these tips on handling negative online reviews can help you and your business improve consumer relations and experience.
Daniel James Consulting is a Full-Service Business Consulting Firm based in New York that designs solutions tailored specifically to the needs of your business in order to ensure you achieve continued success by designing, developing and implementing plans, metrics and platforms, be it a one-man operation, non-profit, startup or large organization. Our packaged solutions or a la carte selections include Website Design, Marketing & Advertising, Search Engine Positioning, and Graphic Design. Business Management Solutions are also available for companies of all sizes.
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