No matter how good your product is or how strong your team’s customer service skills are, it’s inevitable that you will receive some bad online reviews.

The good news is, it doesn’t have to turn into a catastrophe. With the right attitude and proper reactions, a negative review can be turned into a positive experience.

Why is it important to respond to negative reviews?

It’s natural to want to sweep negative reviews under the rug. No one enjoys confrontation and no one wants to hear negative things about their business. However, online reviews are more important than ever. 92% of consumers read online product and service reviews. What’s more, 40% of consumers form an opinion of a product after reading just the first one to three reviews.

These stats show just how important online reviews have become when trying to convert customers. If the first review shown in an unanswered negative review, it could be the last one the consumer reads, establishing a lasting, negative opinion about you.

How do you respond to negative reviews?

We’ll give you a hint; you don’t begin by calling the reviewer a liar. Even if that’s your first instinct, ignore it. Your response to negative reviews is just as much for future viewers as it is for the reviewer. To make sure that you appease the reviewer and impress future viewers with your customer service skills, remember the following tips when drafting responses.

Respond in a Timely Manner

Whenever possible, respond to reviews the day they are made. Doing so shows that you are actively monitoring reviews and that you care about what customers have to say.

Prove that You’re Listening

In your response, you want to restate the reviewer’s initial issue. This shows the reviewer that you have taken the time to read and internalize their concerns. You never want to be the business owner who asks for more information when it is already in the review.

Keep it Positive; Offer Action

Even if you know that the reviewer is flat out lying about their experience, or lying about being a client or customer, keep it positive and offer to take action to resolve the issue. If you want to point out that you have no record of them doing business with your company, do so, but keep it light and offer the same contact information you would any other reviewer. “We have no record of you as a customer, but please give us an opportunity to resolve this issue” is a lot better than “This reviewer isn’t really a customer and is lying.”

Offer Contact Information

Once you have showed the reviewer that you value their opinion and are willing to take appropriate action, it’s time to take it home by providing contact information. Giving specific contact information or requesting they send you a private message accomplishes two things. First, it shows the reviewer that you respect their privacy. Second, and most importantly, it takes the conversation out of the public eye. You have already shown other viewers that you are customer service driven with the initial response. There is no need to go back and forth with the reviewer in public.

Are you swimming in reviews and need help keeping up with responses? Or maybe you’ve never gotten a single review and you need help generating them. No matter what your review struggles, the Clearbridge Media team can help you reach your goals. Visit our website to learn more and find contact information.