How to recover from bad online reviews

Online reviews heavily impact the decisions of consumers with 83% of respondents using reviews to help them pick the right hotel.

Online reviews are increasingly important as they create the branding for your business.

The first place potential customers run to when they are trying to find new products and services – or maybe even recommended ones – is the internet.

A recent study from TripAdvisor revealed that 83 per cent of respondents said that reviews helped them pick the right hotel. Another 53 per cent of them said they wouldn’t commit to a booking until they had read reviews.

So, it’s very important that the positive reviews outweigh a few negative ones online. But sometimes you’ll be landed with a bad review – here’s how to recover.

Take action

The first step is to be proactive! Pay attention to all of the reviews you receive from your customers online as this will help you to understand how your customers are feeling about your business, products and services. This lets you make any necessary changes and improvements.

Try to respond to reviews immediately – you may have missed a negative review or forgotten to go back and respond to it. This will distract customers away from your business so you must be on top of every review and prepare yourself to respond.

See also: The importance of online reviews for SMEs

If you have received a negative review the first thing you should do is apologise to your customer and avoid becoming defensive of your brand if they continue to complain. Remember the aim is to prevent a negative review from dissuading others to buy from your business, so always aim to satisfy the customer rather than upset them more.

Making your response public will effectively show that you are a proactive company when it comes to dealing with issues. This is your opportunity to let others who visit the site see that you’re eager to please your customers. Try to respond to positive reviews just as much as it will show that you do listen to your customers and value their opinions.

Finding the right solutions

Always try to offer a solution offline. For example, you could personally call the customer and offer them an alternative to satisfy their needs, like a refund or a replacement. Aim to make the customer feel valued again; they will if they see that you have taken the time to respond to them personally.

If you have given an alternative offer to the unhappy customer, make sure you follow up on them and continue to interact with them. They need to be able to understand how much you wish to make them happy.

Once they’re happy and satisfied with your response ask if they’d consider updating their review. It’s important for others to see that you have successfully turned around a bad experience for this particular customer.

See also: How small businesses cope with bad reviews online

Negative online reviews do not have to damage your business. You simply have to be proactive and manage your responses to negative comments. By doing so you can continue to satisfy customers as well as build a good reputation for the business.

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Digital Marketing

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