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Living in a digital age comes with its ups and downs and in the land of customer reviews, it's hard to ensure that your organization is represented accurately. The power of word-of-mouth is paramount for any business but online, your customers can see the good, the bad, and the ugly — and that's okay! It's how you respond as a company that matters.

 

According to Glance, it takes 12 positive customer experiences to make up for one negative experience.

 

So how do you turn a negative comment into a positive outcome? 

 

First things first: you have to listen to the wise words of Taylor Swift and "Shake it Off." Accept that not everyone is going to be 100% satisfied with your product, service, or company at all times. Rather than view the negative feedback as a failure, try to consider it as one of these three opportunities. 

  1. Fix an unforeseen issue

Sometimes a product or service can have issues that go unnoticed until fresh eyes have taken a peek. Your online audience includes millions of fresh eyes and powerful voices that will inform you of what's wrong. Stop, read, and consider what they have to say. They may provide a great idea to fix the problem before it becomes a larger issue.  


For example, let’s say you've gone to a new restaurant and ordered an entrée, but it's overcooked and does not meet expectations to what was advertised. You call over the server to explain the issue, and they take it back to the chef to fix it. The chef resolves the problem — you receive a new dish made to perfection, and your dining experience has been saved.

 

Now think about if you didn't say anything. You would have sat at dinner dwelling on how awful your meal was and possibly turned to a public outlet to advise everyone not to ever eat at that particular restaurant. 

 

Negative reviews can be like a bad dining experience. If the issue is not addressed, a bigger issue can arise that may quickly spiral out of your control. So, welcome all constructive criticism.  

  1. A chance to connect with customers 

In the words of American entrepreneur Alan Weiss, "Ask your customers to be part of the solution, and don't view them as part of the problem." 


Negative reviews are a great opportunity to connect one-on-one with your customers and directly address their concerns and offer help. Not only will this make the negative reviewers feel valued and heard, but it will also show the online community you are actively listening.


This is no time for automated responses. It's essential to interact genuinely with your public. 


Don't stop at just answering poor reviews but be sure to respond to positive ones as well. Show your platform that you are a community, not a hierarchy.


  1. Show your company culture 

Take this chance to let your company’s positive culture shine, showing customers you are inclusive and customer-focused. 


Don't be on the defense of negative reviews as this may be off-putting for customers who want to leave a positive review. Customers should feel comfortable and encouraged to leave reviews for you. Whether they are negative or positive, if you create a space that welcomes all individuals in an outlet to speak freely, then more people will want to leave positive comments and support your organization — even if a few negative reviews exist.


Remember to accept areas of improvement, embrace change, and welcome all potential opportunities to make a positive and impactful impression. 


Quickly turn negative reviews into a positive opportunity with ReviewMaxer. Watch the ReviewMaxer demo today.

 

Photo by Chris Liverani on Unspash 


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You’ve spent a great deal of time and effort training your employees, and you’re proud of the culture you’ve created within your company. Unfortunately, one day during a transaction with a customer, a misunderstanding occurs, and the customer leaves feeling unsatisfied with the level of service he received. Before you know it, you’ve lost half a star rating on your Google business page because the unhappy customer left a negative review. Here are three things you should do immediately.

  1. Read to understand. 

Take your time when reading the review. You want to understand your customer’s point of view. By putting yourself in your customer’s shoes, you’ll reply empathetically instead of defensively.

  1. Do your research.

Before responding to the review, do some digging internally to find out exactly what occurred when the customer interacted with your company. The more informed you are about the incident the better.

  1. Respond timely.

Now that you’ve had the opportunity to gather information, it’s time to respond to the customer. Begin by acknowledging the customer’s experience. Apologize, even if no one at your company made a mistake or acted inappropriately. Next, assure the customer that you have standards in place that you expect all employees to uphold. Last, invite the customer to return to your company.  

Negative reviews can do real damage to your company’s reputation. It’s imperative that you address each one. According to statistics provided by BrightLocal, 90% of consumers read online reviews before visiting a company and, of those, 97% will take the time to specifically read the company’s responses to reviews. Additionally, 84% of consumers think that reviews older than three months aren’t relevant, and 48% of consumers only read reviews written in the past two weeks. 


Applying these three steps when you’re dealing with a negative review is a productive way to respond effectively and maintain your online reputation. 


It can be challenging keeping up with your online reviews. ReviewMaxer makes managing your online reviews easy and improves your online reputation. Want to learn more about it? Sign up for a complimentary demo today.



Amide Jean is a spring intern at Axia Public Relations and a communication student studying at the University of North Florida. She is detail-oriented and passionate about exceeding expectations and goals. Amide joined Axia in January 2020.


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In the age of technology, online reviews are often the deciding factor for prospective customers. For instance, online statistics website Qualtrics found that 93% of consumers reported online reviews impacted their purchasing decisions. What happens when the good intention of online reviews goes awry?


Thew Brewing Company received backlash in the form of negative online reviews in August 2019 after hosting fundraising events for an LGBTQ organization. The brewery held two drag shows in support of Tanager Place LGBTQ Youth Center. The first drag show was for people over 21, and after many teens who attended the center shared their interest, the brewery held an all-ages bingo drag show. 


Once word about the shows spread, online reviews began flooding in, most of them displaying disapproval of the company’s LGBTQ support and events. Thew Brewing’s dedicated regulars took note and began posting positive reviews and recommendations on the company’s Facebook page. In just two hours the brewery received 24 positive reviews and 16 negative reviews. 


Many of the negative reviews were dishonest; however, they still had an impact on the company’s overall rating. Unfortunately, many other companies have been the subject of false reviews, and some companies have even taken legal action, like this business owner in Forest Lake, Minnesota. Luckily, Thew Brewing had the support of its regular customers and other individuals to combat some of the negative backlash. 


Online review sites are a platform for honest and helpful reviews of companies. Is it OK to use them to show disappointment or disagreement with a company’s business practices? If you’re disappointed in a company’s services, then a negative review is acceptable. However, reviewers shouldn’t tarnish a company’s image if they’ve never done business with the establishment. Negative reviews can be detrimental to an organization. Thew Brewing was able to recover from its negative reviews. Would your company recover from something similar?


Your reputation and reviews are a big part of how customers decide to do business with your company. ReviewMaxer can help your company build a positive online presence. Schedule a demo today!


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