Kerry London News

How to handle negative reviews online

Wednesday 21st December
How to handle negative reviews online

For many businesses, having an online presence and reputation has become an organic part of their business strategy.

For others there are serious concerns over reputational risk. Due to the internet being an almost entirely public forum, businesses may be concerned about complaints or other negative reviews online being permanently attributed to their brand.

However if your business knows how to deal with negative reviews when they appear, it can be a big step to establishing yourself online positively.

Responding is better than not responding

It can be very tempting when you see a negative review to leave it alone and not interact with it – the hope being that if it’s left without a reply it will eventually disappear.

This is faulty logic: if a customer review is online, it’s online permanently. The best thing that you can do with any negative comment online is to respond to it.

Not only is this the first step in resolving the complaint, but it also lets other customers who read it know that your business is responsible and cares about responding to negative customer experiences.

Take it offline

How to handle negative reviews online

It can be difficult to predict how a customer who has posted a negative review will react when you respond to them.

Negative reviewers often just want to be heard, and this can occasionally manifest in ways that are hard to handle. That’s why it’s imperative that you try and take the conversation offline as soon as possible.

Once the conversation is via private message, email or over the phone, it’s much easier to handle the conversation if it becomes more heated.

If you try to resolve the situation completely online, every response will be visible to potential and existing customers, which can greatly impact your ability to resolve the issue.

Get them to contact you

Depending on where the negative review is located, you may have the option to contact the customer privately i.e. With a direct message on Twitter on Facebook.

Alternatively, you should ask the customer to contact you so that you can resolve the issue. Best practice is to give a direct contact number or email to someone in your team.

Use empathy/apologise

How to handle negative reviews online

It can be disheartening or irritating to see a bad review for your business.

However, it’ not necessarily a bad thing. Insight research performed by Revoo in 2013 showed that 63% of consumers trust companies more when they see both good and bad scores.

This could be because a company with only positive reviews can seem unrealistic and untrustworthy. In the same research, 95% of consumers suspected censorship or faked reviews when they didn’t see any bad reviews.

So as long as your bad reviews are outweighed by good ones, they can still help solidify your online reputation.

Not only that, Revoo’s research shows that some consumers will actively seek out negative reviews, and the consumers that do this have a higher conversion rate than regular internet-users.

Respond to what you can

There’s a possibility that your business has too many negative reviews to respond to manually. Hopefully this isn’t the case, but if your business is larger and has a wider customer base then it can happen. In this scenario, respond to whatever you can practically.

If you’re going to resolve negative reviews, it’s important to have the resources in place to do it properly. Otherwise you could end up giving these customers a second negative experience.

Read more about managing your reputation online. Find out more about Kerry London Limited.

Categories: Corporate,

What to do when you get negative reviews