How to Handle Bad Reviews and Keep New Leads Coming In

By | July 22, 2017

Most businesses live or die by qualified Leads. Everyone loves good reviews online, but you need to know how to respond to bad reviews. Ignoring or mishandling bad reviews will have a dramatic, negative impact on new leads and sales.

Find Out What’s Being Said About You Online

There are three ways to find out how people feel about you online.

  • Monitor Yelp, Facebook, TripAdvisor, OpenTable or any other social media and review sites that are relevant to your business.
  • Reputation management software is becoming a must-have for businesses of all sizes.
  • Reputation management firms take care of this for you. If you’re being killed by bad reviews and in a crisis situation, you need expert help.

Negative Reviews

Everyone hates bad reviews, but you’ll inevitably get some. In fact, they can point you toward changes you should make in your service or product. Watch for patterns of similar complaints.

  • A small number of bad reviews mixed in with many more good reviews makes your business appear more credible.
  • Remember that the review reflects someone’s experience with your business, so react as a business owner and don’t take it personally.
  • Turn off the feature that allows original posts on your Facebook page. Others can comment to your posts. You can respond to bad comments with comments of your own.

How to Respond to Bad Reviews

  • Always respond in a timely fashion. Your competitors are.
  • Restate the complaint. This reassures both you and the customer that you understand their complaint.
  • Never make excuses. Don’t say “we were really busy” or give another excuse. Instead, say “this doesn’t usually happen and we’d like to make it right.”
  • Highlight your strengths. Reframe a negative as a positive. “We’re sorry you had a bad experience, but even though we’ve been serving thousands of customers every week for 10 years, each customer is important. We’d like to offer you…”.
  • Resolve it even if the customer is wrong. How you respond to angry customers says a lot more about you than good reviews. Refund the meal cost, take back the product, do something.
  • Discuss it off-line. If making a refund, it’s reasonable to see proof they bought from you. Ask them to call or email you with details so the refund can be processed.

Ignoring bad reviews or handling them badly will damage your business. Keep valuable leads flowing in by handling negative reviews appropriately.