Dealing with customer reviews online
Never has having good reviews been more important, they are not just there to give your potential customers an idea about how well you provide a service or how great your product are they also have a large part to play in how well your company website ranks on Google.
Why is this???
Simply put Googles product is giving everyone what they want when they want it, part of the Google search ranks are calculated by the level of positive interactions visitors make on or about your website. For example do people visit more then one page, how long do they spend on a page plus does this website have lots of positive reviews, managing your Google, Trustpilot or face book reviews is vital in a) showing how great you are and b) clinging up the ranks of search engines.
Feel free to take a copy of the info-graphic above, but for a more details please read on.
Whenever you complain about something it is because you have a grievance, when you feel like you are being ignored it simply adds to your annoyance.
The same is true of online reviews, simply ignoring them is not an option in-fact it shows poor customer service.
For good reviews you should thank your customer for taking time to review your company.
For negative reviews, be prompt in addressing the issue in your reply., more about how to reply to negative feed back is detailed further down.
OK so someone has just written a stinking review, there are so many reasons why this may happen… Maybe a parcel didn’t arrive, you accidentally sent the wrong product, your normal high standards slipped.
Lets face it mistakes happen, put your self in the shoes of your customer they have got annoyed to the point where they have left you a bad review and it looks like they will never do business with you again.
Opening your reply with a simple apology and explanation of what happened and how this is not normally how things happen in your business can get them back on side.
For example Mr Davis received his parcel on time but the contents where broken because the packaging wasn’t properly packed.
Hi Mr Davis Thanks you for your feedback and taking time to review our company, we can only apologise for what has happened with your order, this falls below our normal standards, we are looking into why this happened
This is a simple opening, keep reading we have more tips how to build a great response.
Continuing on from the Mr Davis issue in the previous section of this post, the next thing to do in your reply is to try and get the reviewer to contact you or arrange for you to contact them.
Hi Mr Davis Thanks you for your feedback and taking time to review our company, we can only apologise for what has happened with your order, this falls below our normal standards, we are looking into why this happened. In the mean time if you could call me on 01234 56 7890 or email our customer services department [email protected] we will do everything we can to resolve this issue for you.
This has done 2 things, firstly Mr Davis doesn’t have any reason to reply to your response in a public forum, instead he is now going to contact you and give you the chance to resolve his issue.
It also shows people reading your reviews that you care when things go wrong and are willing to help when these things happen.
As previously mentioned it is important to thank everyone for their reviews good or bad, manors are free and when people see you have responded to their review or complaint they are more likely to remember your company.
Manors are free at the end of the day and remembering that most text in the internet it cannot hurt to put a bit more out there to help boost your company’s online portfolio.
If there is a specific issue raised albeit big or small address it.
If someone’s parcel was delivered late you should explain why this was the case and what is going to be done to stop this from happening again, if there was snow that day apologise but explain all parcels where delayed due to adverse weather conditions.
If there was an issue with the quality of a product ensure you offer them a replacement.
There are many issues people raise in reviews, sometimes these issues are from customers who leave 3-4 star reviews what ever the case apologise, empathise and take action.
So we’ve dealt a bit with dealing with actual customers but sometimes people for reasons unknown just leave you a bad review having had NO interaction with your company.
For eCommerce companies it is easy to see if someone has placed an order with you or not, however the same rules apply to start with, apologise, emphasise and then tackle any issues.
However most reviewing platforms give you the ability to appeal and request reviews to be removed, this can take some time and there is no guarantee they will actually get removed but you have to try. Click here to see how this can be done on Google reviews.
On the flip side you MUST NOT request legitimate reviews to be removed, we will tackle this in a different way or just leave them where they are.
Whilst not always appropriate if you have resolved an issue why not simply say or email your customer asking for a second chance. Simply stating at the end of your email “We trust everything has now been resolved to your satisfaction we would like to reassure you whilst mistakes do happen this is not the norm and hope you would consider us in the future.”
There are no guarantees here however it is a nice way to let your customer know you are sorry that an unlikely event has happened, they may or may not come back but if you don’t ask you don’t get right…
Your responses are another way to interact with your customer also they are visible to everyone reading your online reviews so why not put your marketing hat on and try for an up-sale.
For example if someone is giving positive feed back about a particular product why not mention other products in your response.
Lets say a customer loved the blue wall paper they purchased from you…. you could say in your response. “Glad you love your wallpaper blue is my favourite colour too, we offer many other products in blue” also when talking about home improvement you could take the opportunity to ask for a room shot with the wall paper hung to post on your social media pages…
Remember that online reviews and your responses are visible to search engines and as such may appear in search results, if you are replying to positive 4-5 star reviews why not try to get things like the product name, the service, your company name or words describing the product such as what it is, its colour or function.
Whilst this is probably not the first place you would think your customers would look for your products and services what better introduction then a good review.
OK so that 1 star review has been sitting there for a while now and you know your customer has received their good or the issue has been resolved to everyone’s satisfaction…
Now is the time to pick up the phone or email them to make sure they are happy, if they are just drop in a request for them to update their review, it doesn’t have to be a 5 star but we would appreciate a 3 star review.
Obviously be conscious of not alienating or upsetting them further simply tell them that you appreciate their patience and would appreciate it if they would re-consider their review especially the rating.
Online reviews are an important factor in how customers make decisions of where and what they are going to purchase, it is also getting more important for B2B websites to keep an eye on their reviews.
Whilst most will hopefully be good keeping on top of them will show you to be a responsive company that is looking to deliver a good service to its customers.
At AME WebTech we offer advice and consultation to build SEO strategies that can include getting more online reviews for your company, we also cover this and a lot more about how to respond and manage your reviews on various platforms.
Why not contact us to find out more