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How to Respond to Negative Business Reviews

Negative Business ReviewsA Negative Business Review… Some people say it’s a good thing to receive negative reviews because they give honest feedback and can improve your SEO, while others state that receiving negative feedback can only bring bad news to business owners. Either way, it’s important to understand why they happen and what you can do about it.

Although no one wants to receive negative criticism, sometimes we find ourselves to be the unwilling recipient. So what can we do when placed into this unfortunate situation? Being as transparent as possible is a really great start. When you make the choice to make your business transparent, you are showing the world that you have nothing to hide, which helps to remove any trust barriers that can exist between business and consumer.

Top Reasons Why People Complain
Although there are a multitude of reasons for why people feel they need to complain about a particular business, there are a few reasons that far and large stand out from the rest.

  1. Product and/or service failed to meet the consumer’s expectations.
  2. Lack of information and/or knowledge.
  3. A simple matter of a difference of opinions.

How do I Know If People are Writing Reviews About Me?
It’s your responsibility to seek out any reviews out there that are written about you and your website. This way you are able to keep up with any and all information in the online arena that is talking about you! Where to start? Perform a search on your company every few days or so, which will help you keep track of results that show when you input your company name. A really great idea is to set up a Google Alert and let them do the searching for you. If your business name comes up in any new content, they will send you an alert to let you know.

Google Alerts – Sends you an alert via email or RSS feed when a term is found on a new web page. Perfect for entering in your business name. Google Alerts Sign-up

Google Places – You should have a Google Places account anyway to make it easy to be found with local searches but Google also compiles your reviews to be displayed here and allows you to respond to them. Google Places Sign-up

What Does a Negative Business Review Really Mean?
If you find that your business is receiving negative reviews, it’s important that you look into the matter immediately. If there are only one or two negative reviews posted, address them both as quickly as possible in order to prevent any further reviews that may be related to the same topic coming in. If there happens to be a lot of negative feedback on a single issue, then look at this as a great chance to correct an issue that is obviously causing some of your consumers a lot of problems.

Steps to Take
The first thing you should do is respond. Responding to a negative business review shows that you care about the person and what they have to say, which can help to add a positive light to your business as people will see that you have taken the time to show that you care about your company and want to do your part in correcting any perceived wrong-doings. If you don’t respond, it may come across as if you don’t care about the negative review. This could be bad news for you and your business as you don’t want your customers thinking that you don’t care! There’s simply too much competition in today’s world making it so that great customer service is considered to be one of the top reasons for people deciding whether or not they want to do business with a particular company.

Response Tips

  • Stay Calm! When you get upset you may be more prone to making mistakes. Take a step back, inhale deeply, and think about the best way to go about responding to the negative business review.
  • Be Professional! Thank the reviewer for taking the time to let you know how they feel, address their concerns to the best to your abilities, and then apologize and state that you hope that they will continue to do business with you in the future.
  • Own it! If there was indeed an issue that caused your consumers to write a negative review and it has now been resolved, post a blog about it or create a press release to inform everyone of the issue and how you/your business resolved it. This will definitely help to establish that all-important trust relationship.

The most important part to remember when receiving negative reviews is to not take it personally. If you can step above any petty squabbling, reply with a genuine response that you heard the reviewer, and let them know that you will take steps to solve the issue, you can turn a negative review it into one of the reasons people will buy from you. Negative reviews are an opportunity for you to shine and show potential customers that you will solve problems if they ever arise.

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