Online review management services can make a huge difference in how your business’s online presence is perceived not only because they can mitigate the fallout from unfortunate reviews, but because they can do it with a cool head. As a business owner, this is a much harder task to do because you have a personal interest in a business you pour so much of yourself in to.
As an online review management company, we have plenty of experience in helping small and medium business owners deal with negative reviews and we have a lot of experience in helping these business owners to correct mistakes they’ve made in trying to respond to negative reviews themselves. That’s why today we’re going to share some tips on how you should NOT handle negative reviews of your business.
Online Review Management Services Share How NOT to Respond to Negative Reviews
Don’t Hide and Don’t Go in Aggressively
When it comes to reacting to negative reviews of your business online, you may be tempted to take one of three approaches. Either you are going to try to run and hide, you are going to approach the situation aggressively, or you are going to deal with the issue with a calm head. Very few business owners take the latter approach simply because they are too attached to their business (and rightly so!)
Firstly, it’s important to know that you cannot hide from negative reviews online. The very nature of the internet means that the information that is posted about your business is going to stick around for a very long while. Not only that but because it’s negative press, it’s going to get passed around like wildfire. Hiding will do nothing but give the impression that you don’t care about the experience of your customers or the opinions of your patrons – the last thing that you want to do.
Secondly, you need to know that approaching anything aggressively is always a bad idea. Aggression creates aggression and a hostile environment overall – this is not something that will do any good for any business. Acting aggressively in your response to negative reviews only serves to give the impression that you are short-tempered, someone to be avoided, and simply a dramatic force that no one needs in their life.
Don’t Postpone Your Reply Either
When you receive a negative review of your business online, it’s also important that you address the comment right away. The ideal response time to negative reviews of your business online should be between 24 and 48 hours. This lets clients know that you are involved with your business and that you are concerned about how they feel about your products and services.
Don’t Brush Off Their Experience
Don’t give excuses and don’t brush off the experience of an unhappy customer. Your customers are the lifeblood of your business and your aim should be to make them happy. This means that when they have a negative experience with your business, your sole goal should be to put things right. Whether this means offering a refund, offering a free product replacement, or otherwise compensating the unhappy client, do it.
Be Authentic in Your Response
If you’re like most people, then you can tell when someone is placating you and when someone is genuine in their response to you. Your clients and customers are just as astute and they can determine when you are placating them to make your business look good and when you genuinely care about their experience with your business.
Don’t Be Passive Aggressive
In keeping with the “be authentic” concept, it’s also important not to be passive aggressive in your response to customers who leave negative reviews of your business online. It’s easy to think that you can get away with a passive aggressive comment or remark if it’s buried in a longer apology, but even if it goes unnoticed by customers, it’s not only customers who are going to read it and develop an opinion of your business. Remember that you are always a representative of your business and your customers aren’t oblivious to the idea of passive-aggressive behavior.
Don’t Only Focus on the Now
The now is important when it comes to responding to negative customer reviews but it’s also important to keep your mind on the future. What you write now is going to be visible long into the future and it’s going to play into how future customers perceive your business and you as a company leader.
Don’t Just Make an Online Apology
While it’s important to make an online apology to the customer who leaves a negative review, it’s equally important to reach out to that customer offline. Making an online apology goes a long way in letting your customer AND everyone else know that you care about the situation. Making a one-on-one apology lets your customer know that you care about the situation and not just about your business reputation. It can be easy to give the impression that you are only apologizing because your business reputation is at risk but when you reach out personally, you let the customer know that you genuinely care about making things right.
Do You Need Online Review Management Services?
If you are in need of online review management services to help you to deal with negative reviews of your business online or to help to mitigate the fallout from responses to negative reviews that you have already written, Online Presence Manager can help! Just give us a call today at 727-475-6460 or drop us a line through our online presence management site and we’ll get right back to you!