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How to Answer Your Online Reviews
Business Listing Optimization

How to Answer Your Online Reviews

March 22, 2024

Nowadays, online reviews are essential to the success of your business. Nearly 90% of customers online will only consider buying from a business if they have a rating of 3 or more stars, and a lot of the time, they will not even check or visit a page if it's less than 3 stars. Providing responses to online reviews such as on social media, Yelp, or Google is an essential component that not only builds a positive online presence but also motivates other customers to leave their feedback and invite potential customers to engage with your business.

Why is it important?

  1. Around 94% of customers say that a bad review has convinced them to stay away from a business.
  2. More than 53% of consumers expect businesses to reply to poor reviews within a week.
  3. About 63% claim that a business has never replied to customers' reviews at all
  4. 45% of customers claim that they're more likely to visit a business that responds to negative reviews and takes responsibility for the poor experience.

There are 7 steps to reply to Negative Reviews online:

  1. Address the customer. A simple "Good morning or Hi (first name)" suffices because your customer wants to be heard individually, not just a generic "Dear sir/madam". Calling them by their first name will make the reply personal and authentic.
  2. Say Thank You. This is a response to show the customer that you truly appreciate and value their feedback. It means you pay attention and take their review seriously.
  3. Sympathize and Apologize. By saying this, it shows that you care about the customers and you are not too proud to own up to your mistakes, even if another employee is to blame or the products are faulty. Customers don't appreciate businesses that are too proud or too big to apologize to the people.
  4. Take Responsibility. After saying sorry, the business owner should take responsibility and not attempt to make any excuses. No one cares or listens to your generic excuses. It also shows that you hold your business to the highest standard.
  5. Make things right. Not only addressing the issue, but also correcting it immediately, to show professionalism to your customers. If there is nothing you can do to correct it, convey any changes or improvements that you will do to make things right.
  6. Take the problems offline. There is nothing wrong with contacting the customer directly by sending a private message. This will show the customer that you do care about their issue and they may change their negative perception about your business or company.
  7. Ask for a second chance. Do not just say sorry or ignore them. You can always invite them back and show them just how great your business really is. This is also a good opportunity to create a connection between you and the customer. It will build confidence amongst your employees and customers that you are a great business that appreciates people.

Even though good reviews will not drive away consumers, it's a good chance for business owners to build relationships and gain new long-term loyal customers for their business. Responding to a Positive Review is a lot easier.

There are 5 easy steps to follow:

  1. Say Thank You. It sounds generic, but it has a big impact because you show appreciation for the customer that took their time to share their great experience with your business. Besides, good reviews and high ratings will be an effective tool to attract new potential customers and as a matter of fact, it will also influence their decision-making process.
  2. Reinforce the positive review. Consumers often will mention what they enjoyed best about their experience. You need to identify it and touch on that. It will be a good subtle marketing technique and it will add great value to your business for others to see.
  3. Pass along the compliment. If the customer mentioned the name of an employee, you need to address that and point out that you truly appreciate that and their hard work to make sure the customers have the best experience. It will show the people that you do value your employees and appreciate their hard work.
  4. Let customers know you would like to see them return. Make the customers feel happy and welcome by telling them that you are looking forward to them coming again. They will appreciate it and might even bring their family, friends or even coworkers to come and visit your business.
  5. Mention other products or services. When inviting customers back, be careful not to sound too needy or try to sell them something else. Make it short but clear.

P.S. You can also point out that you have social media or a website for them to follow up with new products or services or just wish to keep in touch.

Remember to always respond to any reviews. It can help you to build your business' online presence and create positive support for your brand.

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